The Dharma Bums

By Jack Kerouac
Read by Tom Parker

6.95 Hours 11/01/2004 unabridged
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Two ebullient young men are engaged in a passionate search for dharma, or truth. Their major adventure is the pursuit of the Zen way, which takes them climbing into the High Sierras to seek the lesson of solitude, a lesson that has a hard time surviving their forays into the pagan groves of San Francisco’s Bohemia with its marathon wine-drinking bouts, poetry jam sessions, experiments in “yabyum,” and similar nonascetic pastimes. This autobiographical novel appeared just a year after the author’s explosive On the Road put the Beat generation on the literary map and Kerouac on the bestseller lists. The same expansiveness, humor, and contagious zest for life that sparked the earlier novel ignites this one. The novel is based on Kerouac’s experiences during the mid-1950s while living in California, after he’d become interested in Buddhism’s spiritual mode of understanding. One of the book’s main characters, Japhy Ryder, is based on the real poet Gary Snyder, who was a close friend and whose interest in Buddhism influenced Kerouac. This book is a must-read for any serious Kerouac fan.

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Summary

Summary

Two ebullient young men are engaged in a passionate search for dharma, or truth. Their major adventure is the pursuit of the Zen way, which takes them climbing into the High Sierras to seek the lesson of solitude, a lesson that has a hard time surviving their forays into the pagan groves of San Francisco’s Bohemia with its marathon wine-drinking bouts, poetry jam sessions, experiments in “yabyum,” and similar nonascetic pastimes.

This autobiographical novel appeared just a year after the author’s explosive On the Road put the Beat generation on the literary map and Kerouac on the bestseller lists. The same expansiveness, humor, and contagious zest for life that sparked the earlier novel ignites this one. The novel is based on Kerouac’s experiences during the mid-1950s while living in California, after he’d become interested in Buddhism’s spiritual mode of understanding. One of the book’s main characters, Japhy Ryder, is based on the real poet Gary Snyder, who was a close friend and whose interest in Buddhism influenced Kerouac. This book is a must-read for any serious Kerouac fan.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“A vivid evocation of a part of our time.” New York Post
“Tom Parker reads Kerouac’s vividly descriptive narrative with sincere enthusiasm.” Library Journal
“The Dharma Bums, with its mystical, environmental, and cultural messages, is a meaningful and relevant piece.” Library Journal
“A poetic celebration of life…a fine, clear narration by Parker. Sound quality is excellent.” Kliatt

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Jack Kerouac

Jack Kerouac (1922–1969) was born in Lowell, Massachusetts in 1922. He attended local Catholic schools and eventually Columbia University, becoming in the late 1940s and early 1950s a member of what was soon to be called “the beat generation.” His first novel appeared in 1950, but it was On the Road, published in 1957, that epitomized to the world the beat philosophy. This novel created a sensation by chronicling a spontaneous and wandering way of life in a style that seemed founded both on jazz and on drug-induced visions. Kerouac published several novels, and Mexico City Blues is a volume of his poetry. 

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Fiction
Runtime: 6.95
Audience: Adult
Language: English