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About the book
  • Published: 2 August 2010
  • ISBN: 9780753522523
  • Imprint: Virgin Books
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 640
  • RRP: $29.99

Allen Ginsberg

Beat Poet

Formats & editions

Repackaged and refreshed, this seminal biography of a counter-cultural icon is re-issued to form a core part of the Virgin backlist

In part thanks to early friendships with renegades such as Jack Kerouac, Neal Cassady, and William Burroughs, and his publication of the electrifying and brilliant 'Howl', Allen Ginsberg occupies a significant and enduring position in American literature. Following Ginsberg's death in 1997, Barry Miles, drawing both on his long friendship with the poet and on Ginsberg's journals and correspondence, thoroughly updated and revised his immensely readable account of one of the twentieth century's most extraordinary poets.

  • Pub date: 2 August 2010
  • ISBN: 9780753522523
  • Imprint: Virgin Books
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 640
  • RRP: $29.99

About the Author

Barry Miles

Barry Miles is the critically acclaimed author of the biographies of Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs (all published by Virgin) and of The Beat Hotel. He also wrote Hippie and the authorised biography of Paul McCartney, Many Years From Now.

Also by Barry Miles

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Praise for Allen Ginsberg

“This is a scholarly work and also much fun.”


“Will surely be consulted as an Ur-text for decades to come. Read it at the end, along with Ginsberg's fifteen best books, and you'll know why he matters.”

Michael Horowitz, Sunday Times

“Skilfully evokes the poet's childhood, authoritatively expresses his opinions on sundry matters of later life and work, gives him his due as lifeforce of youthful rebellion and in the 1960s counter. Read it; you'll enjoy yourself.”

Paul Berman, New York Times

“Concentrating on the simultaneity of the public and private in Ginsberg's life, Miles gives us a richer insight into his poetic value - and a better read - than many a tight-lipped critical filleting.”

Saul Frampton, Time Out

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