Everyone is always happy in the ‘50’s. With the picket fence, perfect family, fresh cut grass, it is no wonder why everyone wished they lived in the ‘50’s. In Ginsberg’s poem, Howl, pages cut through the fantasy to deliver us the background of this media-portrayed lifestyle. The communism, failed education system, and corruption of the government – a century filled with enough injustice to drive one into madness. Sharing the same perspective as Ginsberg, Howl illustrates the corruption in education and government that remains indifferent to the present time.
Ginsberg and education could be compared to mixing blood with ketchup – completely and utterly horrid. The best minds, in the perspective of Ginsberg, are entrapped by education to only end up being “destroyed by madness” (Ginsberg, line 1). Ginsberg believed that the best minds had no restrictions and runs on its own independent choice. The best minds were able to open themselves up to different belief systems, including those “who bared their brains to Heaven under the El and saw Mohammedan angels staggering on tenement roofs illuminated” (5). The best minds could even cross borders and end up by being “… busted in their public beards returning through Laredo with a belt of marijuana for New York” (9). The best minds would express themselves in the way they choose to express, even if that meant being “…expelled from the academies for crazy & publishing obscene odes on the windows of the skull” (7). To Ginsberg, the doubted and rejected were the brightest, having nothing to deal with societies standard of intelligence based on merit.
Ginsberg uses the metaphor of Moloch to represent all things evil, with the government being a part ...
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The ‘50’s was not a walk through the park for Ginsberg, making it no different for us today. Howl is a timeless example of how corruption has taken its toll in our institutions – education and government. The best minds were not considered as United States finest, but were the best because it did not conform to society’s will but rather its own. Moloch was the reason for the corruption in the government dealing with war and capitalism. But all in all, an alliance is the key in withstanding all the corruption in the world. Who can best understand a mad society than a maddened man? Besides, Ginsberg was able to see something we all failed to see – that the problems did not end here but will still continue in the future. But like you and I, we can survive and coexist in a world Moloch governs – after all, “I’m with you in Rockland” (Ginsberg, line 94).
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