Books: Sanity of Kerouac

Sanity of Kerouac VANITY OF DULUOZ by Jack Kerouac. 280 pages. Coward-McCann. $5.50.

How in the name of all the past and present editors of the Partisan Review did Jack Kerouac, cult leader of post-World War II intellectual vagrants, ever attain standing as a member (let alone chieftain) of the avantgarde? Vanity of Duluoz, his best book, is a picaresque novel in a tradition as old as Tristram Shandy and about as avant-garde as Laurence Sterne—a man in holy orders, puckish though he was.

Actually an autobiography, the book tells of Kerouac's rise (in Lowell,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!