In and around the 1950s Allen Ginsberg, along with several other great poets interested in changing social consciousness and defying conventional writing, became known as the Beat generation. Beat poetry focuses on the battle against social conformity and literary tradition. These Beat poets, known for their unconventional lifestyle, unorthodox political views, rowdy behavior, and experimental drug use, caused a lot of controversy. In Ginsberg’s Howl and Other Poems, Ginsberg employs a particularly confrontational and crude writing style to challenge the heteronormative, nuclear driven society that promotes the marginalisation and ostracisation of minorities and individuals whose ideology does not agree with that of the rest of the nation. Ginsberg believes that American society remains gravely repressed and his writing works to challenge that. Ginsberg, along with the other poets of the beat generation, introduce all the social taboos of the time such as heterosexual as well as homosexual sex, drugs, and addiction, into their writings. Ginsberg became one of the most influential poets in literary history, preaching his personal truths and promoting the idea of breaking the mold of the idealistic nuclear American society. Bond 2At the time Ginsberg began to write, this idea of the perfect family, (working father, stay at home wife, kids and a dog), had been a widely spread idealistic way of life followed by the mass mainstream population of America. Although equality of opportunity is central to the concept of the American Dream, only those who fit the mold of the straight laced American man receive the privilege of equal opportunity. Ginsberg believes this concept of the idealistic “American Dream” proceeds to do nothing but harm minorities much like himself. Ginsberg “saw the best minds of his generation destroyed by madness… demanding instantaneous lobotomy…”(1-69). The harmful and destructive ideology of the great American dream remains engraved in our society dating all the way back to The Bill of Rights, 1789, ” No person shall be… deprived of life, liberty, or property” and Allen Ginsberg strived to dismantle this falsely constructed ideology. Ginsberg uses his sexaulity as a prime example of the way in which he is censured and exiled from the mainstream respected members of society. Ginsberg’s sexuality has been a source of conflict in his life from the beginning, causing tension with his family as well as playing a part in his expulsion from Columbia. Ginsberg uses his own homosexuality as a means of sabotaging the societal constructs, put in place by previous generations, that oppress the individual’s personal identity. “America I’m putting my queer shoulder to the wheel.”(America) Ginsberg describes how he sees the,Bond 3best minds of his generation… shrieking with delight in police cars for committing no crime but their own wild cooking pederasty and intoxication… Who were dragged off the roof waving genitals and manuscripts… let themselves be fucked in the ass by saintly motorcyclists and they scream with joy. (Howl)Ginsberg’s use of religious imagery, when describing the “saintly” motorcyclists, acts as a message that ridicules religion and, in turn, disparages the society whose cultural identity conforms with that of religion while remaining to uphold an obscene, homosexual identity in a way that remains viewed as highly inappropriate and unacceptable in the literary world at the time. Ginsberg’s writings protest against the destruction of youth, repudiate the violence of industrialism and becomes an anthem for homosexual freedom, rights, and visibility. Ginsberg questions the human beings sentiments as well as affirming her right to prevail. Giving the human being, from the alternative counterculture, her right to exist by allowing her live outside the binaries. Ginsberg believes that these societal constrictions birth a highly oppressive society and create conflict between previously peaceful parties. In his poem “America”, Ginsberg expresses his desire to end this conflict. “America when will we end the human war…I’m sick of your insane demands.” Ginsberg further analyzes this in “Howl”, using Carl Solomon as a preeminent example. Solomon, whom Ginsberg met while they were both briefly institutionalized in the Bond 4same asylum, driven mad as a result of the constricting structures and institutions society built that will prevent him from expressing himself through his art and speech. In this way, Solomon came to represent the Beat generation, forced to live underground and cast out of society. On this notion, Ginsberg suggests Solomon’s insanity remains no more than just a concept formed by society, used to isolate and incarcerate those who do not agree with the mainstream societal constructs.