Saturday, June 09, 2007

Henry Miller in The New Republic

The New Republic is an American magazine first published in 1914. Today, it continues to be published out of Washington. It has a reputation for presenting a progressive, liberal perspective. The following Miller-related articles were found on the New Republic Archive section. I can't link directly to each article, so you'll have to do your own "Henry Miller" search request.
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1919: Henry Miller sends one of his earliest written works to New Republic for consideration. It's a "wild, abortive, thoroughly incomprehensible description of a moment when, entering a vaudeville theatre just as the curtain was rising, I caught the sight of a woman ascending a broad staircase with a marble balustrade." [Remember To Remember (Miller), p. 339]. The editor, Frances Hackett, sends the 27-year old Miller an encouraging rejection letter. "It was a brief, cordial note which sustained me throughout ten years of dismal failure" [ibid, p. 339].

APR 28, 1926. “Correspondence.” (by Henry Miller).
Letter to editor regarding the style of Theodore Dreiser’s play An American Tragedy.
This letter is an excerpt from a long article Miller had submitted to New Republic, but was rejected [Happiest Man Alive (Dearborn), p. 100].

1935: In Miller's Aller Retour New York (1935), he takes a swipe at Malcolm Cowley, editor of New Republic (though he doesn't mention Cowley or the magazine by name). Clearly bitter that he never received a review of Tropic Of Cancer--which he had sent to them at his "own expense"--Miller calls the magazine a "third-rate swindle sheet." (Aller Retour New York, New Directions 1991, p. 34.)
See Nov. 27, 1976 for Cowley's "Reconsideration" of Tropic Of Cancer.

MAR 9, 1938. “Twilight of Expatriates” (by Edmund Wilson)
Abstract: “Reviews the book The Tropic of Cancer, by Henry Miller.”
Quote: He wrote of the "strange amenity of temper and style which bathes the whole composition even when it is disgusting or tiresome." "[He] has somehow managed to be low without being sordid." [source: Henry Miller: A Life (Ferguson), p.270].
This was the first significant (i.e. most widely available) American review of Tropic Of Cancer.

MAY 18, 1938. "A Letter of Silence" (by Henry Miller).
This letter is not listed on the New Republic website, but is noted in the Bibliography of Primary Sources as item C52. It was re-printed in Henry Miller: The Man And His Works (1969). This letter was written in response to Wilson's review of Cancer in March.

JAN 8, 1940. “The Cosmological Eye” (by Dunstan Thompson)
Abstract: “Reviews the book The Cosmological Eye, by Henry Miller.”

1940: The New Republic turns down submissions by Miller [Biography And Humanity (Martin), p. 25].

DEC 30, 1940. “If We Had Some Eggs” (by Harry Levin)
Abstract: “Reviews the books, Hamlet, by Henry Miller and Michael Fraenkel.”

APR 21, 1941. “Peroration to a Book on Greece” (by Henry Miller)
Abstract: “Reports on the author's account of his journey in Greece. Report that the greatest single impression which Greece made upon the author is that it is a man-sized world; View that the link between the human and divine is broken in the Western world; Report that the skepticism and paralysis produced by this schism in the very nature of man provide the clue to the inevitable destruction of the present civilization; View that no nation on earth can possibly give birth to a new order of life until a world view is established; Report that the tragedy of Greece lies not in the destruction of a great culture but in the abortion of a great vision; Author's account of his friend George Katsimbalis and his association with him; Author's view that the light of Greece opened his eyes, penetrated his pores, and expanded his whole being; Influence of the journey on author's life.”
Shifreen & Jackson C87.

APR 21, 1941. “The Artist as Desperado” (by Philip Rahv)
Abstract: “Reviews three books by Henry Miller. Tropic of Cancer; Black Spring; Tropic of Capricorn.

SEP 8, 1941. “On Declaring War” (by Henry Miller)
Presents letters to the editor on the issue related to immediate declaration of war against Germany by the United States.
Shifreen & Jackson C90.

JAN 12, 1942. “The Colossus of Maroussi/The Wisdom of the Heart” (by Philip Rahv).
Abstract: “Reviews the books The Colossus of Maroussi, and The Wisdom of the Heart, by Henry Miller.”

MAY 10, 1943. "Prince Of Denmark" (by Henry Miller).
A review of Walter Lowrie's A Short Life of Kierkegaard. This article is not listed on the New Republic website. The Bibliography of Primary Sources states that this is Miller's first paid book review.
Shifreen & Jackson C109. Miller had hit a low point by soliciting magazine publishers for books to review. New Republic was one of the respondants, sending him the book on Kierkegaard and paying him approximately $10 for the review [Always Merry And Bright (Martin), p.391]. Miller planned on writing a more in-depth review of the book for another magazine [A Literate Passion (Stuhlman), p. 356].

AUG 30, 1943. "The Legends of Ignorance" (by Henry Miller).
Shifreen & Jackson C115. A Book review of The Devil And The Jews?

NOV 8, 1943. “From the New Republic Mail Bag.”
Abstract: “Presents information [about] Henry Miller, an author, [and] his four books Tropic of Cancer, The Cosmological Eye, The Wisdom of the Heart, and The Colossus of Maroussi; Report on publication of one of the books abroad; Efforts of Miller to remain faithful to his art; Information on selling of his water colors by Miller; Comment of Miller on irony of life.”
Shifreen & Jackson C118. This is an excerpt from one of Miller's Open Letter to All and Sundry, a plea for friends and fans alike to buy his paintings or donate painting supplies or old clothes. This one had been written in March 1943 and excerpted by New Republic. [Happiest Man Alive (Dearborn), p. 226]. Miller claimed that the N.R. publication of his letter made the charity appeal a "howling success." [The Devil At Large (Jong), p. 314]. Time Magazine found this appeal newsworthy, and wrote about it in their Dec. 13, 1943 issue.

DEC 6, 1943. “Another Open Letter” (by Henry Miller)
Abstract: “Presents a letter to the editor in response to the comments made to the article "Open Letter," published in the November 8 issue.”
Shifreen & Jackson C120. In this letter, Miller is critical of James Laughlin's inability or unwillingness to publish his banned books [source: H Miller And J Laughlin: Selected Letters (Wickes), p.39].

DEC 20, 1943. “Mr. Miller and His Conscience” (by A.G.S.)
Abstract: “Presents a letter to the editor in the form of a poem commenting on the author Henry Miller of the U.S.”

DEC 4, 1944. “The Return of Henry Miller” (by Nicola Chiaromonte)
Abstract: “Comments on the writing style and qualities of writer, Henry Miller. Author's views about Miller's perfection and compactness as a writer as expressed in his published works; Criticisms and praises for Miller's biographical works such as The Cosmological Eye, Return to Brooklyn and Tropic of Cancer; Reputation and popularity of Miller as a writer and personnel director for Western Union; Expression of Miller's moral struggle against sentimental ties in his family and his own frailty and helplessness; Author's views about Miller's ability to humanize the writer as a character in his biographical books; Views about Miller's seriousness and uniqueness as a writer and story-teller.”
This article is re-printed in the book Of, By And About Henry Miller (1947).

DEC 2, 1946. “Worth Reprinting.”
Abstract excerpt: “Focuses on a list of books that are worth reprinting and added to various libraries.” [includes Miller]

FEB 6, 1950. “Correspondence” (various authors).
Abstract excerpt: “Attack on Henry Miller's autobiographical novels by federal censorship.”

JUL 10, 1961. “An Old Shocker Comes Home” (by Stanley Kauffmann).
Abstract: “Reviews the book Tropic of Cancer, by Henry Miller.”
Kauffmann found it "dated and its reputation inflated." [Happiest Man Alive (Dearborn), p. 278].

MAR 5, 1962. “The Tropics Of Miller” (by David Littlejohn).
Abstract: “Reviews several books written by Henry Miller. Tropic of Cancer; Tropic of Capricorn; The Colossus of Maroussi; The Air-Conditioned Nightmare.”

NOV 27, 1976. “Reconsideration” (by Malcolm Cowley).
Tropic Of Cancer is one of three books reviewed.

NOV 27, 1976. “Genius And Lust” (by Martin Duberman).
Abstract: “Reviews the book Genius and Lust, by Norman Mailer and Henry Miller.”

OCT 21, 1978. “Reconsideration” (by Alfred Kazin).
Abstract: “Examines the life and works of American writer, Henry Miller. Emphasis on Miller's style in writing and his portrayal of sex and sexuality; Popularity of his works including Tropic of Cancer; Achievements and contributions to literature; Public opinion on Miller's published works.”

The abstracts are borrowed directly from the New Republic website. Archive articles may be purchased online throught their website.

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