Hostname: page-component-848d4c4894-r5zm4 Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-06-20T15:14:51.361Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

Popular Modernism: Little Magazines and the American Daily Press

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  23 October 2020

Abstract

This essay looks at the American popular reception of modernist little magazines and of writers who were regularly published there, including James Joyce and Gertrude Stein. In the 1920s, book reviewers, syndicated daily book columnists who reached millions, and celebrity columnists took notice of authors or books that were considered news. Experimental modernist writing was frequently discussed, even when it had appeared in obscure little magazines. Even editorials in major newspapers debated literary trends. This national conversation about modernist writing has been largely ignored by critics, although it dramatically affected the canonization of writers in this period. Examining the popular understanding of modernism rather than the ways modernists understood popular culture reveals that there was an intimate exchange between literary modernism and mainstream culture and that modernist writers and texts were better known and, indeed, more popular than has been previously acknowledged.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 by The Modern Language Association of America

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Works Cited

Benedict, Anderson. Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism. New York: Verso, 1983.Google Scholar
“The Apotheosis of Miss Stein, 1934.” Vanity Fair May 1934: 21.Google Scholar
A. S. K. “Oil and Water: With Apologies to the Author of Tender Buttons.” Little Review July 1914: 63.Google Scholar
“Books Received.” Life 13 Oct. 1927: 30.Google Scholar
George, Bornstein. Material Modernism: The Politics of the Page. New York: Cambridge UP, 2001.Google Scholar
Heywood, Broun. “It Seems to Me.” New York World 20 Jan. 1924.Google Scholar
Fanny, Butcher. “The transatlantic review.” Chicago Daily Tribune 28 June 1924: 7.Google Scholar
Bennett, Cerf. At Random: The Reminiscences of Bennett Cerf. New York: Random, 1977.Google Scholar
Cheney, O. H. Economic Survey of the Book Industry: 1930–31. New York: Bowker, 1931.Google Scholar
Chinitz, David E. T. S. Eliot and the Cultural Divide. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 2003.Google Scholar
“Choosing the New Century's Best Books: A Discussion by Hilaire Belloc, Henry Seidel Canby, Gertrude Atherton, Van Wyck Brooks, Christopher Morley, William Lyon Phelps, Maurice Francis Egan, Carl Van Vechten, John Erskine, Richard Le Gallenene.” Literary Digest International Book Review May 1923: 13.Google Scholar
“Composition as Explanation.” Editorial. New York Times 24 Oct. 1926, sec. 2: 8.Google Scholar
“Confidential Guide.” Life 23 Aug. 1928: 26.Google Scholar
Conger, Myrtle. “Investigations and Oil (after Gertrude Stein—with Apologies).” Saturday Evening Post 21 June 1924.Google Scholar
“A Cubist Treatise.” Baltimore Sun 6 June 1914.Google Scholar
“Current Magazines.” New York Times Book Review 10 Apr. 1921: 27.Google Scholar
“Current Magazines.” New York Times Book Review 16 July 1922: 28.Google Scholar
“Current Magazines.” New York Times Book Review 5 Aug. 1923:28.Google Scholar
“Current Magazines.” New York Times Book Review 8 June 1924: 26.Google Scholar
Dettmar, Kevin J. H., and Watt, Stephen, eds. Marketing Modernisms: Self-Promotion, Canonization, Rereading. Ann Arbor: U of Michigan P, 1996.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
DiBattista, Maria. “Introduction.” Di Battista and McDiarmid 322.Google Scholar
DiBattista, Maria, and McDiarmid, Lucy, eds. High and Low Moderns: Literature and Culture, 1889–1939. New York: Oxford UP, 1996.Google Scholar
Theodore, Dreiser. “Mr. Dreiser Passes Judgment on American Literature.” Interview with Rose C. Feld. New York Times Book Review 23 Dec. 1923: 7.Google Scholar
“Dr. Lowes Finds Tender Buttons Poetic Asparagus.” Post Dispatch [Saint Louis] 29 Mar. 1916.Google Scholar
Max, Eastman. “The Cult of Unintelligibility.” Harper's Apr. 1929: 632–39.Google Scholar
Richard, Ellmann. James Joyce. New York: Oxford UP, 1959.Google Scholar
“Fame Contests.” New York Times 24 Feb. 1924, sec. 2: 6.Google Scholar
Barry, Faulk. “Modernism and the Popular: Eliot's Music Halls.” Modernism/Modernity 8 (2001): 603–21.Google Scholar
Fitch, Noel Riley. In Transition: A Paris Anthology: Writing and Art from transition Magazine, 1927–30. New York: Doubleday, 1990.Google Scholar
Donald, Gallup. The Flowers of Friendship: Letters Written to Gertrude Stein. New York: Knopf, 1953.Google Scholar
Wayne, Gard. Book Reviewing. New York: Knopf, 1928.Google Scholar
David, Garnett. “The Authors' Protest for Joyce—a ‘Typo’ in Gertrude Stein!Evening Post [New York] 23 Apr. 1927.Google Scholar
Genêt [Janet Flanner]. “Paris Letter.” New Yorker 30 Apr. 1927: 105–09.Google Scholar
Lyndall, Gordon. T. S. Eliot: An Imperfect Life. London: Random, 1998.Google Scholar
“Gyring and Gimbling (or Lewis Carroll in Paris).” Saturday Review of Literature 30 Apr. 1927: 1+.Google Scholar
Harry, Hansen. “Books Resist Commercialism.” Editor and Publisher 21 July 1934: 105.Google Scholar
Harry, Hansen. “The First Reader.” New York World 28 Nov. 1926.Google Scholar
Harry, Hansen. “The First Reader.” New York World 4 May 1929.Google Scholar
Harry, Hansen. “The First Reader.” New York World 2 July 1929.Google Scholar
Helen, Henderson. “Combining Art and Literature Is Decidedly Being Done during These Modern Days in Paris; James Joyce and Gertrude Stein Are Explained by Ardent Devotees.” Philadelphia Inquirer 4 Dec. 1927.Google Scholar
Andreas, Huyssen. After the Great Divide: Modernism, Mass Culture, Postmodernism. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1986.Google Scholar
I. M. P. [Isabel Paterson]. “Turns with a Bookworm.” Herald Tribune [New York] 31 May 1925.Google Scholar
I. M. P. [Isabel Paterson]. “Turns with a Bookworm.” Herald Tribune [New York] 17 June 1928.Google Scholar
I. M. P. [Isabel Paterson]. “Turns with a Bookworm.” Herald Tribune [New York] 14 Apr. 1929.Google Scholar
Manju, Jaidka. T. S. Eliot's Use of Popular Sources. Lewiston: Mellen, 1997.Google Scholar
[James Thurber]., J. G. T. “More Authors Cover the Snyder Trial.” New Yorker 7 May 1927: 69.Google Scholar
Kershner, R. B. Joyce and Popular Culture. Gainesville: UP of Florida, 1996.Google Scholar
Letter. Des Moines Register-Leader 9 Mar. 1924.Google Scholar
Morris, Markey. “Crime Passionel.” New Yorker 2 Apr. 1927: 3640.Google Scholar
McDonald, Florin I.Book Reviewing in the American Newspaper.” Diss. U of Missouri, 1936.Google Scholar
McMillan, Dougald. Transition: The History of a Literary Era, 1927–1938. London: Calder, 1975.Google Scholar
Mark, Morrisson. The Public Face of Modernism: Little Magazines, Audiences, and Reception, 1905–1920. Madison: U of Wisconsin P, 2001.Google Scholar
“Mostly at Random.” Louisville Post 15 Dec. 1929.Google Scholar
“New Outbreaks of Futurism.” Boston Transcript 11 July 1914.Google Scholar
Allison, Pease. “Readers with Bodies: Modernist Criticism's Bridge across the Cultural Divide.” Modernism/Modernity 7 (2000): 7797.Google Scholar
Theodore, Peterson. Magazines in the Twentieth Century. Urbana: U of Illinois P, 1964.Google Scholar
“Public Gets Peep at Extreme Cubist Literature in Gertrude Stein's Tender Buttons.” Chicago Daily Tribune 5 June 1914: 15.Google Scholar
Janice, Radway. A Feeling for Books: The Book-of-the-Month Club, Literary Taste, and Middle-Class Desire. Chapel Hill: U of North Carolina P, 1997.Google Scholar
Lawrence, Rainey. Institutions of Modernism: Literary Elites and Public Culture. New Haven: Yale UP, 1998.Google Scholar
Rainey, Lawrence., ed. Modernism: An Anthology. Maiden: Blackwell, 2005.Google Scholar
Marjorie, Reid. “Shopkeeper of Shakespeare and Company.” New York Times Book Review 3 Dec. 1922: 7+.Google Scholar
“Rotogravure Picture Section in Three Parts.” New York Times 13 May 1923, sec. 7: 2.Google Scholar
Rubin, Joan Shelley. The Making of Middlebrow Culture. Chapel Hill: U of North Carolina P, 1992.Google Scholar
Brenda, Silver. Virginia Woolf Icon. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1999.Google Scholar
Some Opinions.” Transition 18 (1929): 290–91.Google Scholar
Gertrude, Stein. The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas. 1933. London: Penguin, 1966.Google Scholar
“Steinese Literature.” Evening Post [Chicago] 7 Aug. 1914.Google Scholar
Frank, Swinnerton. “Ulysses Is Now the Most Discussed Book in England.” Chicago Tribune 12 Nov. 1927: 15.Google Scholar
“Talk of the Town.” New Yorker 7 May 1927: 14.Google Scholar
John, Tebbel. A History of Book Publishing in the United States. Vol. 2. New York: Bowker, 1978.Google Scholar
Alyson, Tischler. Massive Modernism: Reading Gertrude Stein and Company. Diss. U of Michigan, 2002. Ann Arbor: UMI, 2003. ATT 3068982.Google Scholar
Michael, Tratner. Modernism and Mass Politics: Joyce, Woolf, Eliot, Yeats. Stanford: Stanford UP, 1995.Google Scholar
Catherine, Turner. Marketing Modernism: Between the Two World Wars. Amherst: U of Massachusetts P, 2003.Google Scholar
Warner, Elinor Hope. “Officer, She's Writing Again”: Gertrude Stein's American Readers. Diss. U of Virginia, 1994. Ann Arbor: UMI, 1994. ATT 9424456.Google Scholar
Wilson, Ian, Gould, Warwick, and Chernaik, Warren, eds. Modernist Writers in the Marketplace. New York: St. Martin's, 1996.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Alex, Zwerdling. Improvised Europeans: American Literary Expatriates and the Siege of London. New York: Basic, 1998.Google Scholar