Individual exhibits showcase such landmark works as Kerouac's 'On the Road' and Ginsberg's 'Howl,' and enlarged photos of Beat luminaries adorn the walls. Supplementing City Lights' holdings, a vast collection of books of Beat literature, poetry, and culture (as well as of the Hippie and rock cultures that followed) are for sale. There are also audio and video recordings, posters, postcards, and the like.
Cimino and his staff are fabulously knowledgeable and friendly. Check them out at kerouac.com and 1-800-KER-OUAC.
Photos: Elliott Erwitt, Burt Glinn, and Dennis Stock (all courtesy Magnum Photos); Jerry Stoll (courtesy Casey Stoll), C.R. Snyder; and courtesy ruth weiss, Larry Vuckovich, San Francisco History Center (S.F. Public Library), Corbis Sales
Ginsberg painting: Danny O'Connor (docart.co.uk)
Special thanks to Brad Rosenstein of SFPALM (sfpalm.org)
• For more on the Beat Generation, including some precious archival video footage, don't miss 'The Source,' Chuck Workman's compelling and intelligent DVD documentary on the subject.