Harriet Monroe



The New Beauty


Literatur: Monroe
Literatur: Poetry
Literatur: "1913"


Quoiqu'il arrive, ces premieres années de notre siècle annoncent une floraison qui sera parmi les plus riches. Et il fait bon de vivre en ces heures de rude combat pour la capture de la beauté nouvelle. Fritz-R. Vanderpyl and Guy-Charles Cros in the Mercure de France, December 1, 1912.

Of the countless offerings of verse which have reached us during the last half-year the greater number have been pathetically ingenuous in their intellectual attitude. Numerous books and more numerous manuscripts appeal importunately for time and space, whose eager authors seem as unaware of the twentieth century as if they had spent these recent years in an Elizabethan manor-house or a vine-clad Victorian cottage. This is true even of certain ones who assert their modernism by rhyming of slums and strikes, or by moralizing in choppy odes, or in choppier prose mistaken for vers libre, upon some social or political problem of the day.

It is not a question of subject, nor yet of form, this new beauty which must inspire every artist worthy of the age he lives in. The poet is not a follower, but a leader; he is a poet not because he can measure words or express patly current ideas, but because the new beauty is a vision in his eyes and a passion in his heart, and because he must strain every sinew of his spirit to reveal it to the world. He can not resign his ancient [23] prophetic office; and the technique of its fulfilment – the style which he achieves with joyous ease or more or less painful labor, according to his temperament – necessarily can not satisfy him until it matches the beauty of the vision.

All this is so obvious as to be usually forgotten. Art in general, and poetry in particular, are regarded as a decoration of life, not as its very pulse and heart-beat, inevitable like a sunrise or a flower. Being a decoration, it becomes a side-issue, something extraneous, a matter of pleasing fancies and pretty patterns, which may be taken conveniently from the past and modified for modern uses. And so each generation imposes its opinion on the next, and the poet, who should be born and brought up to freedom, finds himself shut up in ready-made conventions and prejudices. If he is weakly inspired, his little gleam of the new beauty will be extinguished and forgotten, and he will go along imitating the masters and pottering with inessentials. And even though he is a giant in strength and an apostle in faith, whose vision of the new beauty would lead him through fire and sword, storm and shame, he must yet spend a heavy toll of his precious power in fighting the lords of things as they are, in destroying barriers and winning through to freedom.

If poetry is to have its share of that promised efflorescence which is to be "among the richest" this old world has known; if the signs do not fail, and it is indeed "good [24] to live in this time of rude struggle for the capture of the new beauty," then our poets would seem to be in need of courage. They should pay less attention to old forms which have been worn thin by five centuries of English song. They should return rather to first principles, feel as if poetry were new, and they the first to forge rhythmic chains for the English language.

POETRY has given space, and will doubtless give more, to voices and fashions more or less reminiscent, convinced that it is only by such trial ventures that some men can discover their true place. A talent which seems authentic should be encouraged, even if it begins in a thin soprano or a rather raucous bass. The masterpiece is always a rarity, and it blooms not in a desert but in the midst of lesser growth. We have printed sonnets, but always with the arriere pensée that the sonnet is an exhausted form, whose every possible shade of cadence has been worked out and repeated until there are no more surprises left in it. Modern drama is waiting to be written, is part of that new beauty to be captured, but it will hardly be caught in classic or Elizabethan garments. Poetic narrative may have a future as great as its past, but it is rather late in the day for sea-dog epics like Mr. Noyes' Drake, and buccaneer ballads of blood and fire. Indeed, it may be questioned whether Mr. Masefield captures the new beauty in his tales of present-day squalor and struggle told in swinging Byronic [25] verse; for his plots strike melodramatic attitudes and his lines have an old familiar stride.

It may be that alien hands will uncover the new treasure, that in this twentieth-century welter of nations the beauty of the English language must be rediscovered by some Russian immigrant or some traveler from Turkestan. Today it is not a poet of Anglo-Saxon race but a Hindoo with divinatory power in English, who has the keenest vision of the new beauty, and the richest modern message, not only for the millions who speak his mother-tongue but also for those far-scattered millions who carry Shakespeare's mother-tongue over the world. If the great achievement of the twentieth century is to be its making friends of East and West, it may be that the one most important episode of England's rule over India will be the teaching of her language to Rabindra Nath Tagore.

It may be premature to express an opinion founded largely upon still unpublished translations from the Bengali. But this Hindoo shows us how provincial we are; England and America are little recently annexed corners of the ancient earth, and their poets should peer out over sea-walls and race-walls and pride-walls, and learn their own littleness and the bigness of the world.





Erstdruck und Druckvorlage

A Magazine of Verse.
Bd. 2, 1913, Nr. 1, April, S. 22-25.

Gezeichnet: H. M.

Die Textwiedergabe erfolgt nach dem ersten Druck (Editionsrichtlinien).

Poetry. A Magazine of Verse   online
URL: https://modjourn.org/journal/poetry/
URL: https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/000677633
URL: https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/008916521







Literatur: Monroe

Brandmeyer, Rudolf: Poetiken der Lyrik: Von der Normpoetik zur Autorenpoetik. In: Handbuch Lyrik. Theorie, Analyse, Geschichte. Hrsg. von Dieter Lamping. 2. Aufl. Stuttgart 2016, S. 2-15.

Ehlers, Sarah: Making It Old. The Victorian/Modern Divide in Twentieth-Century American Poetry. In: Modern Language Quarterly 73.1 (2012),S. 7-67.

Newcomb, John T.: How Did Poetry Survive? The Making of Modern American Verse. Urbana, Ill. u.a. 2012.

Newcomb, John T.: The Emergence of "The New Poetry". In: The Cambridge Companion to Modern American Poetry. Hrsg. von Walter Kalaidjian. Cambridge 2015, S. 11-22.

Pondrom, Cyrena N.: The Road from Paris. French Influence on English Poetry, 1900 – 1920. Cambridge: University Press 2010.

Schulze, Robin G.: The Degenerate Muse. American Nature, Modernist Poetry, and the Problem of Cultural Hygiene. Oxford 2013.

Szefel, Lisa: The Gospel of Beauty in the Progressive Era. Reforming American Verse and Values. New York 2016.



Literatur: Poetry

Carr, Helen: Poetry: A Magazine of Verse (1912-36), 'Biggest of Little Magazines'. In: The Oxford Critical and Cultural History of Modernist Magazines. Hrsg. von Peter Brooker u.a. Bd. 2: North America 1894-1960. Oxford 2012, S. 40-60.

Ernst, Jutta: Amerikanische Modernismen. Schreibweisen, Konzepte und zeitgenössische Periodika als Vermittlungsinstanzen. Würzburg 2018.

Marek, Jayne: Women Editing Modernism. Lexington 1995.

Massa, Ann: Form Follows Function: The Construction of Harriet Monroe and Poetry, A Magazine of Verse. Knoxville 1995.

Moody, A. David: Ezra Pound. Poet. Vol. I: The Young Genius 1885-1920. Oxford 2007.

Newcomb, John T.: Poetry's Opening Door: Harriet Monroe and American Modernism. In: Little Magazines & Modernism. New Approaches. Hrsg. von Suzanne Churchill u. Adam McKible. Aldershot, England 2007, S. 85-103.
URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/20771168   [2005]

Newcomb, John T.: How Did Poetry Survive? The Making of Modern American Verse. Urbana, Ill. u.a. 2012.

Olson, Liesl: Chicago Renaissance. Literature and Art in the Midwest Metropolis. New Haven u. London 2017.

Parisi, Joseph / Young, Stephen (Hrsg.): Dear Editor. A History of Poetry in Letters. The First Fifty Years, 1912-1962. New York 2002.

Schulze, Robin G.: Harriet Monroe's Pioneer Modernism: Nature, National Identity, and Poetry, A Magazine of Verse. In: Legacy 21.1 (2004), S. 50-67.
URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/25679482

Williams, Ellen: Harriet Monroe and the Poetry Renaissance. The First Ten Years of Poetry, 1912-22. Urbana 1977.




Literatur: "1913"

Asendorf, Christoph: Widersprüchliche Optionen: Stationen der Künste 1913 In: Internationales Archiv für Sozialgeschichte der deutschen Literatur 38.1 (2013), S. 191–206.

Berranger, Marie-Paule: "À quoi bon les poètes en ces temps de détresse?" In: 1913: cent ans après. Enchantements et désenchantements. Hrsg. von Colette Camelin u. Marie-Paule Berranger. Paris 2015 (= Collection: Colloque de Cerisy), S. 289-324.

Brion-Guerry, Liliane (Hrsg.): L'année 1913. Les formes esthétiques de l'œuvre d'art à la veille de la première guerre mondiale. 3 Bde. Paris 1971/73.
Bd. 3 (1973): Manifestes et témoignages.

Camelin, Colette / Berranger, Marie-Paule (Hrsg.): 1913: cent ans après. Enchantements et désenchantements. Paris 2015 (= Collection: Colloque de Cerisy).

Chickering, Roger: Das Jahr 1913. Ein Kommentar. In: Internationales Archiv für Sozialgeschichte der deutschen Literatur 39.1 (2014), S. 137-143.

Dowden, Stephen D.: Vienna 1913: dans le vrai. In: Internationales Archiv für Sozialgeschichte der deutschen Literatur 38.2 (2013), S. 452-468.

Emmerson, Charles: 1913. In Search for the World before the Great War. New York 2013.

Erhart, Walter: Literatur 1913. Zeit ohne Geschichte? Perspektiven synchronoptischer Geschichtsschreibung. In: Internationales Archiv für Sozialgeschichte der deutschen Literatur 39.1 (2014), S. 123-136.

Hamburger, Michael: 1912. In: Ders., Reason and Energy. Studies in German Literature. London 1957, S. 213-236.

Hübinger, Gangolf: Das Jahr 1913 in Geschichte und Gegenwart. Zur Einführung in den Themenschwerpunkt. In: Internationales Archiv für Sozialgeschichte der deutschen Literatur 38.1 (2013), S. 172-190.

Illies, Florian: 1913. Der Sommer des Jahrhunderts. Frankfurt a.M. 2015 (= Fischer-TaschenBibliothek).

Jauß, Hans R.: Die Epochenschwelle von 1912: Guillaume Apollinaires 'Zone' und 'Lundi Rue Christine'. In: Ders., Studien zum Epochenwandel der ästhetischen Moderne. Frankfurt a.M. 1989 (= suhrkamp taschenbuch wissenschaft, 864), S. 216-256.

Johnson, J. Theodore: The Year 1913: An Interdisciplinary Course. In: Teaching Literature and Other Arts. Hrsg. von Jean-Pierre Barricelli u.a. New York 1990, S. 108-115.

Klausnitzer, Ralf: "Literarische Kunst". Richard Moritz Meyers Beobachtungen des Jahres 1913 und die Gegenwart der Vergangenheit. In: Internationales Archiv für Sozialgeschichte der deutschen Literatur 38.2 (2013), S. 514-539.

Kushner, Marilyn S. u.a. (Hrsg.): The Armory Show at 100. Modernism and Revolution. London 2013.

Mares, Detlev u.a. (Hrsg.): Das Jahr 1913. Aufbrüche und Krisenwahrnehmungen am Vorabend des Ersten Weltkriegs. Bielefeld 2014.

McFarland, Philip James: 1913. Reflections on a Number. In: Internationales Archiv für Sozialgeschichte der deutschen Literatur 39.1 (2014), S. 144-150.

Rabaté, Jean-Michel: 1913. The Cradle of Modernism. Malden, MA 2007.

Sautermeister, Gert: Kultur und Literatur in Deutschland und Bremen um 1913. In: Bremisches Jahrbuch 93 (2014), S. 105-120.

Schaefer, Barbara (Hrsg.): 1912 – Mission Moderne. Die Jahrhundertschau des Sonderbundes. Köln 2012.

Werner, Meike G.: Warum 1913? Zur Fortsetzung des Themenschwerpunkts "Das Jahr 1913 in Geschichte und Gegenwart". In: Internationales Archiv für Sozialgeschichte der deutschen Literatur 38.2 (2013), S. 443–451.



Lyriktheorie » R. Brandmeyer