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The Dharma Bums Audiobook

The Dharma Bums

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Publisher's Summary

Two friends in 1950s San Francisco Bohemia explore Buddhism Zen - hipster style. On the road to finding Dharma, or truth, the story's narrator, Raymond Smith comes to a spiritual roadblock. Smith, based on Kerouac himself, discovers a role model in his friend Japhy Ryder, modeled after the real poet-Buddhist Gary Snyder. This autobiographical novel is one of Kerouac's most popular, and has served as an inspiration to the beat culture, hippies, and dharma seekers since the 1950s. This program is narrated by legendary poet Allen Ginsberg, a friend of Kerouac's and an early fan of his work.

Recording (P)1991 by Audio Literature; ©1958 by Jack Kerouac

What Members Say

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Performance


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Sort by:
  • S. Craig
    23/10/03
    Overall
    "jack at his best"

    on the road part two. with lots of buddism in the mix, just enough humor to keep it from being boring. mind expanding beat litt at its finest.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Benbarian
    Johannesburg, South Africa
    21/05/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "As it should be done"
    What made the experience of listening to The Dharma Bums the most enjoyable?

    Brilliant story, brilliant narration


    Have you listened to any of Allen Ginsberg???s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Ginsberg is the perfect narrator for this piece. There are probably narrators more qualified with better voices and better meter, but Ginsburg lived with Kerouac, danced and sang and sprouted mad poetry with him, he is Alvah Goldbook is the book.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • THOMAS
    26/03/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "You have to love Jack and Allen"

    Reading any biography, or just listening to an author in conversation quickly reveals the complexities of recalled and reshaped experience. Hearing Allen Ginsberg read Jack Kerouac will take you back in an instant and real way to those times, and the relationship between the two men. Your own version of The Dharma Bums will likely be different, just as Jack's own version will be different from your own. But it is also likely that your sense of your own version, and your imagined sense of what Jack's version was will be enhanced by hearing Allen's.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Cass
    2/03/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I didnt know this was abridged when i purchased"

    I didnt know this was abridged when i purchased. Nothing in the item description says so. However Ginsberg is probably the best reader for this captivating and poetic story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ronald C. Wagner
    Mount Auburn, IL United States
    28/12/09
    Overall
    "Don't buy abridged versions of novels."

    This is just not the true Kerouac experience. You need the whole thing. It is a waste of money.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Gabriel
    Askim, Norway
    3/04/09
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent book and narrator but bad sound-quality"

    The book in itself is definitely a 5-star book, and the narrator is perfect for it (he even sounds a bit tipsy, which suits this book perfectly), but the quality of the sound is pretty bad, at least it was so for me, which is why I give it 4 stars.

    All in all, a good book for those who search for the meaning of life and an even greater book for those who have already found out that life's all about having fun.

    (It is pretty hard to pay attention to the beginning of the book, where he presents the characters, but it is sort of essential so you really have to concentrate for the first 15 min.)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A User
    Torrance, CA, United States
    26/02/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Classic BS"
    What would have made The Dharma Bums better?

    A time machine. Maybe this work was cutting edge back in the day but now it just sounds like some hipster doofus babbling on about drinking hooch on the street and chasing tail with his "art" friends. Please, man, I live it, I don't need to hear about it from the sorry likes of you. LAME!


    What could Jack Kerouac have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Stop it with the crystal meth already Jacky! Where's the arc? How 'bout a little element of story thrown in to your jibber-jabbering? Oh that's a stylistic thing? Why the F didn't you say so?


    Would you be willing to try another one of Allen Ginsberg’s performances?

    I like his nasally old man voice. I'm not sure if I downloaded in the wrong quality or what but it sounded like he was at the bottom of a tennis balls tube with the lid still on it.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Boredom. After 1.5 hours I was just saying to myself repeatedly "I think I can, I think I can...finish this stupid book"


    Any additional comments?

    Bleh!

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • S. Crider
    Kansas City, MO, United States
    25/11/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not what I remember when I was a Beat in SF"
    What was most disappointing about Jack Kerouac’s story?

    I was so enchanted by Kerouac, but at my much older age found this story so out of date. I guess i missed the point.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Allen Ginsburg seemed so smug in his reading, I thought he was drunk or stoned. His voice was slurred. I think Mr. Ginsburg could do a lot better than what he did for this book.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    disappointment.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • JILL
    United States
    20/08/11
    Overall
    "Waste of Money!"

    Only 4 chapters for almost $10? The book new costs $15 or $2.50 on Amazon! I'm cancelling...

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Peter
    San Francisco, CA, USA
    22/08/03
    Overall
    "This is not"

    And I hated Ginsberg's overly accentuated reading. It's a short book but I simply could not get through it. Beware!

    3 of 12 people found this review helpful

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