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Writing for The New Yorker

Critical Essays on an American Periodical

Edited by Fiona M Green

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Original critical essays on an iconic American periodical, providing new insights into twentieth-century literary culture

This collection of newly commissioned critical essays reads across and between New Yorker departments, from sports writing to short stories, cartoons to reporters at large, poetry to annals of business. Attending to the relations between these kinds of writing and the magazine’s visual and material constituents, the collection examines the distinctive ways in which imaginative writing has inhabited the ‘prime real estate’ of this enormously influential periodical. In bringing together a range of sharply angled analyses of particular authors, styles, columns, and pages, this book offers multiple perspectives on American writing and periodical culture at specific moments in twentieth-century history.

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Notes on Contributors
Introduction, Fiona Green
I. Magazine and Marketplace
The New Yorker, the Middlebrow, and the Periodical Marketplace in 1925, Faye Hammill
2. ‘We Stand Corrected’: New Yorker Fact-checking and the Business of American Accuracy, Sarah Cain
3. Marianne Moore and the Hidden Persuaders, Fiona Green
II. Self-Fashioning
4. Philip Roth’s Kinds of Writing, Bharat Tandon
5. Spark’s Proofs, Deborah Bowman
6. Sylvia Plath and ‘The Blessed Glossy New Yorker’, Linda Freedman
7. The Distractions of John Cheever, Tamara Follini
III. Lightness and Gravity
8. Portrait of the Rabbit as a Young Beau: John Updike, New Yorker Humorist, Thomas Karshan
9. Sports at The New Yorker, Kasia Boddy
10. The New Yorker Life of Hannah Arendt’s Mind, Duncan Kelly
11. On Blustering: Dwight Macdonald, Modernism and The New Yorker, Tom Perrin

About the Author

Fiona Green is Senior Lecturer in American Literature at the University of Cambridge, and a Fellow of Jesus College. Her recent publications include ‘Elizabeth Bishop’s “In the Village” in The New Yorker,’ Critical Quarterly 52.2, 2010, 31-46; her review essay of Bishop’s Correspondence with The New Yorker was the TLS lead article (15 April 2011).


‘Writing for The New Yorker is a rich and fascinating book that will receive considerable attention not only amongst academics, but also in the wider intellectual world.’

Professor Andrew Thacker, Professor of English Literature, Nottingham Trent University

- Andrew Thacker, Professor of English Literature, Nottingham Trent University

...conspicuously well-written and a pleasure to read.

- Jason Harding, Durham University, The Review of English Studies

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