American Beat Yogi: An Exploration of the Hindu and Indian Cultural Themes in Allen Ginsberg

University essay from Lunds universitet/Masterprogram: Litteratur - Kultur – Media; Lunds universitet/Litteraturvetenskap

Abstract: This paper is an analytical study of the Indian cultural elements in Ginsberg’s life and work, focusing on Indian Journals: March 1962 - May 1963. The aim is twofold: firstly the study explores close-readings of poetry and prose from Indian Journals. The study also focuses on his poetic aesthetics and specific themes in Indian Journals and relates them to incidents of his personal life in a larger Indian context, including the literary, cultural, and religious spheres. The purpose is to reveal that it was in India where Ginsberg experienced the most dramatic changes of his life. Hinduism is a way of living, inseparable from Indian culture. It is the world’s most ancient extant spiritual tradition, much more than just a religion, and spirituality extends far beyond the confines of temple wall. This study presents Indian culture and Hinduism as seen through Ginsberg’s eyes.

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