American Mass-Market Magazines

By Alan Nourie; Barbara Nourie | Go to book overview

There was another lapse from then until December 1902. In the meantime, another publishing house with a similar name had become established in New York. This apparently resulted in some loss of income for Tucker, as he cautioned readers to direct all postal communications to the "genuine Liberty" (December 1902, p. 2).

With volume 15, in February 1906, Liberty began to appear in a new, smaller format. The number of pages was increased to sixty-four (it had heretofore been from four to twelve), and it was sent via third class mail "to avoid governmental supervision, annoyance, and censorship" (p. 1). A fire destroyed the entire stock of Tucker's uninsured book-store in January 1908. He announced to his readers his intent to move to Europe and resume publication there. The last issue, published in April 1908, could scarcely sustain the defiant tone of issue number 1. It contained a maudlin story about a prostitute with the proverbial heart of gold who takes in a homeless girl on Christmas Eve. Liberty never resumed publication, and Benjamin Tucker died in Europe in 1939, having spent his last years filling some twenty volumes with clippings from the periodical press. 4

Though hardly a mass-market periodical in terms of circulation, Liberty exerted a wide influence in anarchist circles both in the United States and abroad. A leader among the nearly 500 radical periodicals issued in the last decades of the nineteenth century, 5 it preserves in print a tradition of individualism and independence.


Notes
1.
Charles A. Madison, "Benjamin R. Tucker: Individualist and Anarchist," New England Quarterly 16 ( 1943): 457.
2.
Bernard Shaw, Bernard Shaw: The Diaries, 1885-1897, ed. Stanley Weintraub (University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1896), p. 69.
3.
Madison, p. 448.
4.
Madison, p. 467.
5.
Wendy McElroy, "Benjamin Tucker, Individualism, and Liberty: Not the Daughter but the Mother of Order," Literature of Liberty, vol. 4, no. 3. 1981, p. 34.

Information Sources

BIBLIOGRAPHY

DeLeon, David. The American As Anarchist: Reflections on Indigenous Radicalism. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1978.

Gutman, Herbert. "Liberty." In The American Radical Press, 1880-1960. Ed. Joseph R. Conlin . Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1974.

McElroy, Wendy. "Benjamin Tucker, Individualism, and Liberty: Not the Daughter but the Mother of Order." Literature of Liberty, 4 ( Summer) 1981, pp 7-39.

-----. "The Culture of Individualist Anarchism in Late Nineteenth-Century America." Journal of Libertarian Studies, vol. 3, no. 5 ( Summer) 1981, pp. 291-304.

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