Author Archives: loribcole

Newspaper Fiction: The New York Journalism of Djuna Barnes, 1913–1919

A modest but compelling show of drawings and journalistic writings of Djuna Barnes is on view at the Brooklyn Museum. Comprised mostly of holdings from the University of Maryland archives, this show puts Barnes’ newspaper writing in an art context. It’s worth checking out!

What can he have Sown…, from the series “Types found in Odd Corners About Brooklyn,” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, August 5, 1913. Djuna Barnes Papers, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries

Call for Papers: Periodical Studies Panel at the ACLA

I’m organizing a panel at the American Comparative Literature Association, which is going to be held at Brown University March 29th to April 1st, 2012. Please encourage any interested periodical studies students/colleagues to submit papers.

Reading Beyond the Nation: Modern Periodical Communities

Seminar Organizer: Lori Cole (New York University)

How do artists and writers define their political and artistic affiliations through magazines? How do journals ranging from Der Dada to Tropiques position themselves internationally? This seminar will address how magazines serve to gather, define, and reflect communities formed in response to early twentieth century geopolitical shifts. Born of modern print culture, the periodical allowed for unprecedented communication across national borders, functioning as a collaborative space and a site for new forms of identification. While the seminar will focus on modernist magazines in Europe and the Americas, submissions on international themes are welcome.

To submit a paper:

Vintage Magazines

As I was preparing for my class on modernism and travel this summer I came across a website of vintage travel magazines that might be of interest. These magazines range from the The Sailors’ Magazine and Seamen’s Friend (September 1893)

to Harper’s Magazine (January 1888)

There is also a selection of National Geographics, turn-of-the-century women’s magazines, and The Literary Digest.


German Expressionist Magazines

In conjunction with its exhibition “German Expressionism: The Graphic Impulse” the MoMA has digitized and uploaded numerous periodicals featured in the exhibition. Because this was a movement enabled by and disseminated through print, it is clarifying to see the individual images that comprise these magazines.


What is the questionnaire?

“What is modernism? What should Latin American art be? What is your attitude towards art today?” Such are the questions posed to artists and writers through the questionnaire, a ubiquitous genre issued by magazine editors to their contributors to assess a community’s shared political or artistic purpose.

While the questionnaire can be traced to the paragone of the Italian Renaissance, wherein the merits painting and sculpture were actively debated, it first appeared in newspapers starting in the late 19th century. While some of these questionnaires focused on aesthetic preoccupations, such as the 1905 Mercure de France questions, “Is Impressionism finished? Can it renew itself?” others mined the intersection of art and politics, like the 1926 “Negro in Art” questionnaire in Crisis. As modernists adapted the questionnaire to suit its various projects, it also playfully reinvented it, as in the case of the 1929 Little Review questionnaire that culminated with the question “Why do you go on living?” Continue reading