On the Road swings to the rhythms of 1950s underground America, jazz, sex, generosity, chill dawns and drugs, with Sal Paradise and his hero Dean Moriarty, traveller and mystic, the living epitome of Beat. Now recognized as a modern classic, its American Dream is nearer that of Walt Whitman than Scott Fitzgerald, and it goes racing towards the sunset with unforgettable exuberance, poignancy and autobiographical passion.
Jack Kerouac (1922 – 1969) was an American novelist, poet, artist and part of the Beat Generation. Most of his life was spent in the vast landscapes of America or living with his mother, with whom he spent most of his life. Kerouac's best known works are On the Road and The Dharma Bums.
Ann Charters, professor of English at the University of Connecticut, has been interested in Beat writers since 1956, when as an undergraduate English major she attended the repeat performance of the Six Gallery poetry reading in Berkeley where Allen Ginsberg gave his sencond public reading of Howl. After his death she wrote the first Kerouac biography and edited his posthumous collection, Scattered Poems. She was the general editor of the two-volume encyclopaedia The Beats: Literary Bohemians In Postwar America and has published a collection of her photographic portraits of well-known writers in the book Beats & Company.