As one of the most famous American poets, Gary Snyder has been linked to the Beat Movement, the Black Mountain Poets and the San Francisco Renaissance. As a lover of nature and Zen Buddhism, Snyder focuses his works around those themes, and dedicates much of his life to environmental activism.
Gary Sherman Snyder was born on May 8, 1930 in San Francisco, California. He grew up on small farms in Washington state and Oregon. At an early age, Snyder became obsessed with nature and angered by the destruction of the Pacific Northwestern forests.
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As it happens for many writers and artists, Lew Welch was often marked by uncertainty and conflicted with his role in society. He lacked the ability to meet goals he had set for himself and usually changed them anyway.
He was prone to mental breakdowns from the time he was a baby and suffered with this condition for the rest of his life. Because he lived with such mental turmoil, Lew Welch is another brilliant mind from a brilliant generation to have suffered an early death.
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While it is said that Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, William S. Burroughs and Neal Cassady are the original Beat writers, there are a number of other key figures that would cause the movement to explode across the nation.
Kerouac and the Beats spent a lot of their time bouncing around the States, between New York and San Francisco. While on the west coast, they met a few other poets who were making waves and bonds were quickly formed.
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In 1948, three students at Reed College met, became friends and eventually became involved with the Beat Generation, the San Francisco Renaissance and the Black Mountain Poets.
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