Thursday, November 16, 2006

Maysville & The God**** Hippies - Part I

What does Maysville Kentucky have to do with One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest's author Ken Kesey, Beat writer Jack Kerouac and his book On the Road, Gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson, and the literary movement that sparked the counterculture explosion of the 1960s, giving rise to such terms as beatniks and hippies? In this four-part series, we'll show the role our little town had in the greatest literary revolution in American history -- the Beat Generation that changed the course of a nation. It all begins with one man... Edward McClanahan.

Ed McClanahan is an American novelist, essayist, and professor. He was born in Brooksville Kentucky in 1932 but moved to nearby Maysville Kentucky with his family in 1948 where he graduated from Maysville High School. Later, he attended Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and the University of Kentucky where he received his Masters in English (1958).

McClanahan spent time at several universities out west before returning to Kentucky to serve as professor at the University of Kentucky and Northern Kentucky University. On a sort of sabbatical from NKU (they were gracious enough to fire him for a brief period), McClanahan completed his most recognized novel The Natural Man. The Natual Man had its inception in 1961 and was finally published in 1983 to great acclaim. McClanahan has frequently thanked Northern Kentucky University for firing him as it allowed him the opportunity to finish the novel, which was completely rewritten from first to third person.

McClanahan has been a writer since the mid 1950s with short stories, essays, and reviews in such magazines as Esquire, Playboy, and Rolling Stone. In 1972 and 1974, he received Playboy's award for nonfiction.

McClanahan currently resides in Lexington, Kentucky.

The story continues in Part II...

posted at 2:12 PM by Jeremy Parnell

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