Tag Archives: William S. Burroughs

The Death of Joan Vollmer Adams Burroughs

william s. burroughs shoots wifeDue to trouble with the law, mainly for drug possession and distribution, William S. Burroughs, his wife Joan and their children moved many times, ending up in Mexico City.

One night Bill and Joan attended a party and, while drunk, it is argued that they decided to play a game of William Tell. While accounts of the events and conversations leading up to Joan’s death differ, it is a fact that Bill did attempt to shoot a glass off Joan’s head and missed. Whether or not they had attempted this trick before is also up for debate.

On Sept. 6, 1951, Bill and Joan visited the apartment of John Healy in Mexico City. A few hours later, Joan arrived at Cruz Roja (Red Cross) where medics began emergency life-saving measures for a bullet wound to the head. Joan had been shot by Bill and pronounced dead at the hospital. She was only 28.

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Documentaries About the Beat Generation

beat generation documentariesSince the Beat Generation refers to a group of writers who were making history over half a century ago, it may be a little difficult to find video footage of them. But here is a list of some of the Beat Generation documentaries that best capture the counter-cultural phenomenon and the people that were involved.

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The Original Beat Writers

beat writersIn the mid 1940s, a group of writers that would spawn one of the biggest cultural movements of the 20th century came together in New York City. Writing about drugs, homosexuality and alternative forms of spirituality, these Beat writers pushed the limits of what was socially acceptable in the conformist 40s and 50s.

The core group of these influential writers were Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Neal Cassady and William S. Burroughs.

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