Kurt Cobain Journals
“If you read you’ll judge.” This is a hand-scribbled message written on the front of Kurt Cobain’s Journals. Published posthumously in 2003, Journals is a first-hand look into the mind of the brooding and confused rock star. As the vocalist and songwriter for multi-platinum grunge band Nirvana, Cobain inherited the attention of many individuals worldwide. However, the discomfort and perplexity he found in his fame were an overwhelming distress which ultimately contributed to Cobain’s decision to take his own life in 1994. While he never intended for these writings to be available to the public, Cobain’s journals are a literary connection that expose the emotions of the struggling musician to the enthralled and confused public he left behind. Though the anthology is an amalgamation of letters, drawings, and embryonic lyrics, the focus of my paper lies on the sections of spontaneous mental outpouring which allow readers a deeper, more intimate perspective of how Cobain viewed the world. In my essay I will discuss specific sections of prose in the journal that display Cobain’s innate ability to express himself vividly with words. These passages also show a deeper-rooted disparity between the thoughts of an artist and a world in which he did not feel comfortable. I believe these segments of Journals to be worthy of such attention because not only do they enhance clarification of Cobain’s tumult, they also show an incredibly intelligent mind that bled eloquently through a pen.