Mad Generation? Gender and Queerness in US-American Culture from the Beatniks to Punk (Stream A)

“The Punks, led by Patti Smith and Richard Hell, adored the Beats and the Beats in turn were grateful to the Punks for drawing fresh, renewed attention to their work. The relationship between the two groups was from the start symbiotic, full of fun and, as Allen Ginsberg once said, chic’”. (Bockris p. 9)

The countercultural scene in New York City, once engrossed by the Beat Generation, gave way to a new movement in the course of the 1970s: the punks. Even though the aesthetics of the two movements seem quite different at first sight, the New Yorker punks have been highly influenced by the Beatniks. And even more so, the punks drew new interest to the Beat Generation writers and revived their influence. This mutual pollination led to a vibrant subcultural scene that Victor Bockris calls “the beat punks“ in his eponymous book.

Drawing on the close relationship of the two movements, our workshop will explore the common themes of gender, sexuality, cross-cultural and trans-medial borrowing, the city, unsteadiness and wandering. We will look at different works of art, including literature, photography, music and film.

Bockris, Victor. 1998 [2000]. Beat Punks. Da Capo Press: Boston.

Anna Müller and Ulla Stackmann met during their B.A. degree in Munich and are now both obtaining their doctorate in English literature. Anna Müller is working on the representation of homosexuality in contemporary cinema and is generally interested in the interelation of gender, film, and literary studies. Ulla Stackmann’s research is concern with modernism, aesthetics, and intermedia studies, currently focusing on audio-recordings that capture poetry readings of the 1960s and 70s.

Anna Müller studierte Anglistik, Amerikanistik, Kultur- & Medienwissenschaften sowie Frauen- & Geschlechterforschung in München und Kassel. Seit 2016 arbeitet sie an ihrer Dissertation, welche sich mit der Darstellung von Homosexualität im zeitgenössischen Kino befasst. Ihre Arbeitsschwerpunkte liegen in den Queer & Gender Studies, der Männlichkeitsforschung, und der Analyse von Literaturadaptionen und Filmen.

Ulla Stackmann studierte in München Anglistik und ästhetische Theorie. In ihrer Masterarbeit untersuchte sie die intermedialen Dynamiken zwischen Literatur und Fotografie in der Moderne. Zurzeit arbeitet sie an einem Promotionsprojekt zu Audio-Aufnahmen von Lyriklesungen. Im Fokus steht die experimentelle Lyrik der 60er und 70er Jahre. Ihr Forschungsschwerpunkt sind intermediale Zusammenhänge, die Moderne und ästhetische Theorien.