The Dharma Bums

KEROUAC, Jack. The Dharma Bums.

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KEROUAC, Jack The Dharma Bums. New York: The Viking Press, 1958.

8vo., original black cloth, lettered with title in metallic green to upper board, and in green, purple and silver to spine; upper edge green; with the dust wrapper ($3.95) designed by Bill English; pp. [xi], 4-244, [iv]; a fine copy, slightly pushed to spine ends and the upper edge a trifle faded; the very good, unrestored dust jacket with a couple of small nicks, lightly rubbed all over. A very nice copy of this famous work.
First edition.
Published just one year after On the Road, The Dharma Bums is also an autobiographical novel from Kerouac, telling the story of two ebullient young men searching for Truth the Zen way: marathon wine-drinking bouts, poetry jam sessions, 'yabyum' in San Francisco's Bohemia, and embracing solitude in the high Sierras. The main characters are narrator Ray Smith (based on Kerouac) and Japhy Ryder, based on the poet and essayist Gary Snyder, who was instrumental in Kerouac's introduction to Buddhism in the mid-1950s.
The book was another huge success for Kerouac, quickly becoming one of his most popular books. It would go on to have a significant influence on the Hippie counterculture during the 1960s.