The Development of the American Short Story: An Historical Survey

By Fred Lewis Pattee | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VIII
LOWELL AND "THE ATLANTIC MONTHLY"

I

The early eighteen-sixties in the annals of the short story center about The Atlantic Monthly. For the first time in the history of the form Boston became the distributing center, a change of base perplexing to one who has followed thus far the course of American fiction. New England literature during the mid-century had been uniformly serious. The short story, especially in the Boston atmosphere, was regarded as a magazine product, ephemeral stuff, "light reading," or at best a miniature novel that might serve as good exercise for young writers who were pluming their wings for serious flight. Collections of short stories were seldom mentioned by the reviewers, even in the lists of "books received." One may read quite through the early volumes of the New York Nation, which aimed to furnish a complete record of the current literary product, and be unaware that such a form existed.

One is surprised, therefore, to find the tremendously serious Boston Atlantic Monthly, 1857, making a specialty of short fiction. From its first issue, three short stories for each number seems to have been the policy of the magazine--in the first two volumes thirty-six pieces of fiction may fairly be rated as short stories. And by no means were they all written by New England writers. Most of the Middle States group appear in the early numbers: O'Brien, and George Arnold from the New York Bohemians, and James D. Whelpley, Bayard Taylor, Caroline Chesebro', and Rebecca Harding from a wider field. The monthly had been started at precisely the right moment. American magazines in quality had reached their lowest ebb. The Nation, reviewing in January, 1866, the Boston Every Saturday, then in charge of no less an editor than T. B. Aldrich, summed up the situation in this characteristic sentence:

As for the articles themselves, we do not find them first-rate, and, indeed, they are of the flavor of too much literature printed for the first

-166-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Development of the American Short Story: An Historical Survey
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 392

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.