The Beats in India
Soul of Asia Program funded by Harold and Ruth Newman
Time: June 14th
10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Location: New York
Asia Society and Museum, Auditorium, 725 Park Avenue, New York
Cost: $20 Asia Society members; $25 for nonmembers; $20 students/seniors
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Discover what drew the Beats to India and how they inspired
successive generations of Westerners to turn to the East for
spiritual and creative wisdom. Participants include Allen Ginsberg's
fellow travelers and poets Gary Snyder and Joanne Kyger, poets Sunil
Gangopadhyay, John Giorno, Anne Waldman, and Ed Sanders, musician
Steven Taylor, and authors Pankaj Mishra, Eliot Weinberger, Gita
Mehta, and Bill Morgan. Based on Deborah Baker's book "A Blue Hand:
The Beats in India," the program will focus on the Indian journeys of
the Beats in the 1960s.
Registration: 9:30 -10:00 am
Welcoming remarks: 10:00 –10:15 am
10:15 -11:30 am: The Original Journey
Gary Snyder and Joanne Kyger interviewed by Eliot Weinberger
Poetry 1: John Giorno
11:30 – 11:45 am
11:45 am – 1:15 pm: Indian Poets and The Beats
Sunil Gangopadhyay (Ganguly) and Anne Waldman discuss the Beats'
connection with Indian poets. Moderated by Deborah Baker. Includes 10
min. clip of Calcutta U. café with Subodh Sarkar.
LUNCH: 1:15 - 2:15 pm
Poetry 2: Ed Sanders and Steven Taylor
2:15 – 2:30 pm
2:30 – 3:45 pm: More Journeys to India
John Giorno in discussion with Gita Mehta about India journeys.
Includes 10 min. footage of Ginsberg in Calcutta taken by Giorno in 1971.
Poetry 3: Gary Snyder
3:45 – 4:00 pm
4:00 – 5:15 pm: Discussion on Westerners and Eastern Spirituality
Pankaj Mishra, Eliot Weinberger, and Bill Morgan
Poetry 4: Anne Waldman
5:15 - 5:30 pm
Book Signing and Reception:
5:30 – 7:00 pm
* * *
Photo, above right: Allen Ginsberg, Benares, Spring 1963. Courtesy of
the Ginsberg Estate.
"From roof of Brahmin's house, where we'd rented third floor room six
months December to May 1963, could see past temple mandir tops across
Ganges River to other shore. Our balconies hung over vegetable-meat
market one side, other side overlooked sacred Dasasumedh alley down
to bathing steps Ghat, peopled by pilgrims beggars & cows; monkeys
visited and snatched our bananas, Peter Orlovsky held my retina,
Benares India Spring 1963."