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Allen Ginsberg was one of the most renowned and admired poets in contemporary literature Allen was known for his antiwar movements and a founding member of the Beat Generation Ginsberg is best known for his poem Howl a long poem attacking American values of the 1950s The style of Jack Kerouac William Carlos Williams William Blake the teachings of Zen Buddhism and the words of Walt Whitman were major inspirations for his search to promote freedom of expression Irwin Allen Ginsberg was born on June 3rd 1926 in Newark New Jersey The son of Louis and Naomi Ginsberg Allen suffered form an emotionally troubled childhood As a young boy growing up Allen watched his mother give in to multiple psychotic episodes She was institutionalized throughout Ginsbergs youth She was also a card carrying communist and a member of many other radical groups of that time Allens father tried to fill the void left by his mother by being a very strict disciplinary figure Adding to this troubling time Ginsberg in his teens became aware of his homosexuality which he concealed from everyone until his late twenties Ginsberg attended Columbia University in 1943 with plans of being a lawyer At Columbia Allen began to build friendships with William S Burroughs Neal Cassady and Jack Kerouac who including his father influenced him to become a poet Ginsberg received his Bachelor of Arts in 1948 After graduation he set off on many spiritual journeys He explored his soul and his mind through poetry In 1954 Allen moved to San Francisco to explore his creativity and later become a founding member of the beat generation During his exploration in California Ginsberg wrote on of his most famous pieces Howl He dedicated howl to a psychiatric patient who inspired him to write the piece Carl Solomon Ginsberg attributes Carl to inspiring many of his great works In the early 1960s Ginsberg experiment heavily with drugs
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