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On the Road

On the Road

by Jack Kerouac

Criminality Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #28

As we passed drowsy Illinois towns where the people are so conscious of Chicago gangs that pass like this in limousines every day, we were a strange sight: all of us unshaven, the driver barechested, two bums, myself in the back seat, holding on to a strap and my head leaned back on the cushion looking at the countryside with an imperious eye - just like a new California gang come to contest the spoils of Chicago, a band of desperados escaped from the prisons of the Utah moon.

When we stopped for Cokes and gas at a small-town station people came out to stare at us but they never said a word and I think made mental notes of our descriptions and heights in case of future need. (III.9.25, III.9.26)

Dean’s criminality is immediately evident to those around him.

Quote #29

To make up lost money he pulled tricks in the lot, a change artist of the first order. I saw him wish a well-to-do man Merry Christmas so volubly a five-spot in change for twenty was never missed. (IV.1.3)

Dean’s criminality doesn’t seem to change over the course of the novel.

Quote #30

Henry Glass was riding the bus with me. He had got on at Terre Haute, Indiana, and now he said to me, "I’ve told you why I hate this suit I’m wearing, it’s lousy - but ain’t all." He showed me papers. He had just been released from Terre Haute federal pen; the rap was for stealing and selling cars in Cincinnati. A young, curly-haired kid of twenty. (IV.2.2)

Henry Glass is particularly reminiscent of a younger Dean Moriarty.

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