Jack Kerouac’s On The Road - Ranting of a Maniac or Precise Interpretation of Reality?

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Jack Kerouac's On the Road: Ranting of a Maniac or Precise Interpretation of Reality?

Jack Kerouac's On the Road is considered the bible of the Beat Generation, illustrating the wild, wandering, and reckless lifestyle chosen by many young people of the time. Despite all of Dean and Sal's partying and pleasure-cruising, On the Road ends up being a sad and disturbing story. During all the trips, through the good times and the bad times, there is a sense of darkness and foreboding following in the wake. Kerouac's point was not to put on display the wild and good times the Beats were having, but rather to expose their way of life as a simple flight from reality and responsibility. The sadness of this novel is due to the
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Sal's aunt makes a more pointed statement directed at Dean later in the book.

"Well, Dean," said my aunt, "I hope you'll be able to take care of your new baby that's coming and stay married this time."

"Yes, yass, yes."

"You can't go all over the country having babies like that. Those poor little things'll grow up helpless. You've got to offer them a chance to live." He looked at his feet and nodded. (253)

The choice to include this scene displays his intent to bring the consequences of their irresponsible lifestyle down into reality and into the readers mind. Sal does not comment on Dean's reaction. Kerouac manages to get his point across, one differing from that of the narrator, by means of the other characters' outward behavior.

Galatea Dunkel is the only young woman who has the gall to stand up to Dean about his irresponsibility and to stand up for herself where her delinquent husband is concerned. When Ed Dunkel and Dean leave her in Tucson Arizona, she is determined to find them and goes to wait for them at Bull Lee's house in Louisiana. When Sal and Dean show up at her door in San Francisco after Camille kicks them out, she tells Dean what she thinks of him.

"For years now you haven't had any sense of responsibility for anyone, You've done so many awful things I don't
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