Allen Ginsberg (1926–1997) was a poet and one of most prominent figures of the Beat Generation. His epic poem “Howl,” which denounced bourgeois conformity and capitalistic greed, became the subject of a landmark obscenity trial in San Francisco. Known for his celebration of the marginalized and the downtrodden and his opposition to American militarism, Ginsberg drew inspiration from the long lines and anaphoric rhythms of Walt Whitman. His 1981 collection Plutonium Ode won the National Book Award; in 1993 Ginsberg was awarded the medal of Chevalier Des Arts et des Lettres by the French government.