I would call these fake beatniks, but then there were less "real" ones than I could count on two hands. Burroughs, Cassady, Kerouac, Ginsberg...that's IT. Plenty tried, but nope, WAY too square. Lawrence Lipton tried, but the beret was just to hide his bald spot. One could add Gary Snyder, Gregory Corso and Lawrence Ferlinghetti to the short list of the real thing, but certainly no more. That is seven beatniks in the whole damn tribe.
You COULD make an argument to include Herbert Huncke, but then you would have to dump all the others and he would be the ONLY beatnik. Herbert makes the original seven beatniks look like poseurs. Actually, so does Neal Cassady. So let's settle on two. There were two real beatniks.
Truly, Beatnik was much, much, much ado about nothing. But boy did the media jump on it. Sheesh...it was during the post-war Eisenhower years, and ANYONE who didn't have two kids, a garage and a mortgage had something suspicious going on, so let's give them a label and put them in Life Magazine.
Untitled (Beatniks) Original 8 x 10 photograph, No Date Collection Jim Linderman