In the Kerouac Archive
How did the novel On the Road evolve? What did Jack Kerouac hope the movie would be like? How did he view the advent of celebrity culture in America? Douglas Brinkley commented on how a trove of previously unpublished writings by Kerouac would shed light on these questions. (November 1998)

Ladder to Nirvana
"Part severe simplicity, part hep-cat jargon, part baroque fireworks." A month after Kerouac's On the Road was published, Phoebe Lou Adams reviewed it for The Atlantic Monthly. (October 1957)

The Only People for Him
In Lionel Trilling's distinction, Jack Kerouac is more than a writer; he has become a "figure" in our culture. By Ralph Lombreglia (August 1996)

A Modern Whitman
"Ever since he first recited "Howl" in a San Francisco coffeehouse, in 1956, Ginsberg has been railing against the horrors of urban life, the stupidity of our government, and the crimes of what used to be called the military-industrial complex." Literary critic James Atlas commented on the writings of Kerouac's compatriot Allen Ginsberg. (December 1984)

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.