Anarchism and the Beats

In Sharin Elkholy (ed.), The Philosophy of the Beats. The University Press of Kentucky. pp. 227-242 (2012)
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The paper charts both the interpersonal connections between historical anarchist figures and the beat poets as well as the philosophical similarities between them. Almost all the beat poets were anarchists, though their politics was secondary to their attempts to transform consciousness. Among the anarchists, the romantic socialist Gustav Landauer, who was especially popular in post-war American anarchist circles, came closest to the political perspective of the beat poets. Like the beats, Landauer was a poet, a pacifist, an anarchist, a communitarian, a romantic, and a mystic. In northern California, the circle of anarchists surrounding Kenneth Rexroth provided support and inspiration to the early beat movement. In New York, the beats had an affinity with anarchists such as David Thoreau Wieck and the publication "Why?" (later "Resistance"), as well as Dwight Macdonald's "politics" and Holley Cantine's "Retort".
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