On the Road The Original Scroll ePUB Ô Road The

The legendary 1951 scroll draft of On the Road published word for word as Kerouac originally composed it Though Jack Kerouac began thinking about the novel that was to become On the Road as early as 1947 it was not until three weeks in April 1951 in an apartment on West Twentieth Street in Manhattan that he wrote the first full draft that was satisfactory to him Typed out as one long single spaced paragraph on eight long sheets of tracing paper that he later taped together to form a 120 foot scroll this document is among the most significant celebrated and provocative artifacts in contemporary American literary history It represents the first full expression of Kerouac’s revolutionary aesthetic the identifiable point at which his thematic vision and narrative voice came together in a sustained burst of creative energy It was also part of a wider vital experimentation in the American literary musical and visual arts in the post World War II period It was not until than six years later and several new drafts that Viking published in 1957 the novel known to us today On the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of On the Road Viking will publish the 1951 scroll in a standard book format The differences between the two versions are principally ones of significant detail and altered emphasis The scroll is slightly longer and has a heightened linguistic virtuosity and a sexually frenetic tone It also uses the real names of Kerouac’s friends instead of the fictional names he later invented for them The transcription of the scroll was done by Howard Cunnell who along with Joshua Kupetz George Mouratidis and Penny Vlagopoulos provides a critical introduction that explains the fascinating compositional and publication history of On the Road and anchors the text in its historical political and social context


10 thoughts on “On the Road The Original Scroll