Search Site
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
MembersReviewsPopularityRatingFavorited   Events   
25,534 (28,181)339640 (4.13)840

Top members (works)

Member favorites

1001 (109) 1001 books (106) 1960s (157) 20th century (233) America (60) American (296) American fiction (86) American literature (475) anthology (219) beat (205) Beat Generation (89) classic (411) classics (382) counterculture (73) essays (63) favorites (71) fiction (2,896) insanity (108) Ken Kesey (89) literature (427) logging (60) made into movie (88) mental health (118) mental hospital (78) mental illness (436) mental institution (61) movie (76) non-fiction (63) novel (493) Oregon (179) own (120) paperback (72) poetry (318) psychiatry (84) psychology (234) read (336) short stories (67) to-read (1,092) unread (141) USA (130)

Ken Kesey has 2 past events. (show)

You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical name
Legal name
Other names
Date of birth
Date of death
Burial location
Country (for map)
Place of death
Cause of death
Places of residence
Awards and honors
Short biography
Kenneth 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.
Disambiguation notice

Member ratings

Average: (4.13)
0.5 5
1 48
1.5 14
2 202
2.5 46
3 940
3.5 228
4 2372
4.5 318
5 2437

Author pictures (3)


(see all 3 author pictures)

Improve this author

Combine/separate works

Author division

Ken Kesey is currently considered a "single author." If one or more works are by a distinct, homonymous authors, go ahead and split the author.


Ken Kesey is composed of 15 names. You can examine and separate out names.

Combine with…


About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 157,938,067 books! | Top bar: Always visible