Ken Kesey

Ken Elton Kesey (September 17, 1935 – November 10, 2001) was an American novelist, essayist and countercultural figure. He considered himself a link between the Beat Generation of the 1950s and the hippies of the 1960s.

Kesey was born in La Junta, Colorado, and grew up in Springfield, Oregon, graduating from the University of Oregon in 1957. He began writing ''One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest'' in 1960 following the completion of a graduate fellowship in creative writing at Stanford University; the novel was an immediate commercial and critical success when published two years later. During this period, Kesey participated in government studies involving hallucinogenic drugs (including mescaline and LSD) to supplement his income.

Following the publication of ''One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest'', he moved to nearby La Honda, California, and began hosting happenings with former colleagues from Stanford, miscellaneous bohemian and literary figures (most notably Neal Cassady) and other friends collectively known as the Merry Pranksters; these parties, known as Acid Tests, integrated the consumption of LSD with multimedia performances. He mentored the Grateful Dead (the ''de facto'' "house band" of the Acid Tests) throughout their incipience and continued to exert a profound influence upon the group throughout their long career.

His second novel, ''Sometimes a Great Notion''—an epic account of the vicissitudes of an Oregon logging family that aspired to the modernist grandeur of William Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha saga—was a commercial success that polarized critics and readers upon its release in 1964, although Kesey regarded the novel as his magnum opus.

In 1965, following an arrest for marijuana possession and subsequently faked suicide, Kesey was imprisoned for five months. Shortly thereafter, he returned home to the Willamette Valley and settled in Pleasant Hill, Oregon, where he maintained a secluded, family-oriented lifestyle for the rest of his life. In addition to teaching at the University of Oregon—an experience that culminated in ''Caverns'' (1989), a collaborative novel written by Kesey and his graduate workshop students under the pseudonym of "O.U. Levon"—he continued to regularly contribute fiction and reportage to such publications as ''Esquire'', ''Rolling Stone'', ''Oui'', ''Running'', and ''The Whole Earth Catalog''; various iterations of these pieces were collected in ''Kesey's Garage Sale'' (1973) and ''Demon Box'' (1986).

Between 1974 and 1980, Kesey published six issues of ''Spit in the Ocean'', a literary magazine that featured excerpts from an unfinished novel (''Seven Prayers by Grandma Whittier'', an account of Kesey's grandmother's struggle with Alzheimer's disease) and contributions from intellectuals including Margo St. James, Kate Millett, Stewart Brand, Saul-Paul Sirag, Jack Sarfatti, Paul Krassner and William S. Burroughs. After a third novel (''Sailor Song'') was released to lukewarm reviews in 1992, he reunited with the Merry Pranksters and began publishing works on the Internet until ill health (including a stroke) curtailed his activities. Provided by Wikipedia
Showing 1 - 20 results of 31 for search 'Kesey, Ken', query time: 0.21s Refine Results
  1. 1
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 2010
    Other Authors: ...Kesey, Ken...
    Video Blu-ray Disc
  2. 2
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1994
    Book
  3. 3
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1990
    Book
  4. 4
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1991
    Book
  5. 5
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1973
    Book
  6. 6
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1992
    Book
  7. 7
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1965
    Book
  8. 8
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1973
    Book
  9. 9
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 2003
    Book
  10. 10
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1971
    Book
  11. 11
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1976
    Book
  12. 12
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1973
    Book
  13. 13
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1987
    Book
  14. 14
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1995
    Book
  15. 15
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1977
    Book
  16. 16
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1992
    Book
  17. 17
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1990
    Book
  18. 18
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1990
    Book
  19. 19
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1997
    CD Audio Book
  20. 20
    by Kesey, Ken
    Published 1962
    Book