Mapping on the road with Jack
Just over 60 year’s ago, Jack Kerouac made his momentus journey across America. While googling around looking for hotels where other famous writers wrote classic books (any tips most gratefully recieved), I came across this map, apparently from one of Kerouac’s own diaries, which shows the itinerary of that fateful journey across America between July to October 1947, much of which would later serve as the backdrop for On the Road. I’ve always loved the early writings of Jack Kerouac, indeed I would go so far as to say that reading On the Road when I was seventeen probably changed my life.
The most beautiful map connected with Kerouac is this one by artist Stefanie Posavec who has drawn a most beautiful representation of the opening chapters of On The Road. Her maps explore the patterns of the text in a literary space. According to NOTCOT, “the maps visually represent the rhythm and structure of Kerouac’s literary space, creating works that are not only gorgeous from the point of view of graphic design, but also exhibit scientific rigor and precision in their formulation: meticulous scouring the surface of the text, highlighting and noting sentence length, prosody and themes, Posavec’s approach to the text is not unlike that of a surveyor.”