The Hound and Horn: A Harvard Miscellany (1927 – 1929)
The Hound and Horn (1929 – 1934)
Date of Publication:
Sept. 1927 (1:1) – July/Sept. 1934 (7:4)
Place(s) of Publication:
Concord, New Hampshire
Camden, New Jersey
Frequency of Publication:
2500 to 3000, average
The Hound and Horn, Incorporated
10″ x 6″. Approx. 150 pages. Featured poetry, fiction, reproductions of visual arts, and criticism of theater, film, music, dance, and architecture.
Bernard Bandler II
A. Hyatt Mayor
Yvor Winters, Allen Tate, R.P. Blackmur
Select Libraries with Original Issues:
Harvard University Library; Duke University Library
New York: Kraus Reprint Corporation, 1966.
Born from the mind and the bank account of Lincoln Kirstein, The Hound and Horn ran from 1927 until 1934. Although the undergraduates who started the magazine eventually dropped the subtitle – A Harvard Miscellany – the magazine showed its Harvard roots by featuring many alumi in its pages of criticism, poetry, and art. Editors Allen Tate, Yvor Winters, and R. P. Blackmur combined this 1929 title alteration with a shift in critical style, making The Hound and Horn an early home to the school of New Criticism.
Although The Horn and Hound focused primarily on these critical reviews, editors typically reserved a quarter of each issue for poetry and fiction (Hoffman 208). Though they did not “discover” any poets as other magazines did, they perpetuated the careers of authors like T. S. Eliot, Henry James, e. e. cummings, Conrad Aiken, Wallace Stevens, William Carlos Williams, and Henry Adams, while offering critical essays from modernist favorites like Marianne Moore (Hoffman 208-9). Their poetic picks leaned toward the experimental and revolutionary. Despite brief flirtations with Marxism, Humanism, and Agrarianism, Kirstein did his best to keep the magazine focused on art rather than on politics. Along with modernist poetry and prose were reproductions of visual art and criticism that touched upon many artistic fields, including theater, music, film, dance, and architecture (Chielens 144).
Kirstein’s true love turned out to be ballet rather than literature, and in 1934 he moved his interests (and with it, his money) to the founding of what would eventually become the New York City Ballet. Having become the sole editor in the final years of The Hound and Horn, this move marked the demise of the magazine (Chielens 142). Although Kirstein would go on to be remembered for his contributions to both the schools and literature of ballet, The Hound and Horn helped perpetuate literary careers, enhanced the school of New Criticism, and helped to inspire future magazines like The Southern Review and Kenyon Review (Hoffman 210).
When Lincoln Kirstein founded The Hound and Horn, he wanted it to strongly reflect its Harvard background:
“Its pages will be open to creative work in any field and on any subject, provided that work is of a sufficiently non-technical nature to assure a general Harvard interest. Of the miscellaneous nature of the proposed magazine the present issue can be but an indication: in addition to prose and verse, critical studies of art and architecture, reviews of current books and periodicals, and reproductions of painting and sculpture, future numbers will contain articles on music, history, philosophy, science, and sport. The Hound and Horn will supply a fresh medium for creative expression to all members of the University who desire it… It is the intention of The Hound and Horn to provide, in a measure, a point of contact between Harvard and the contemporary outside world, both here and abroad. It will endeavor to represent Harvard’s potential best, and it calls upon sympathetic subscribers, contributors, and critics to help reach such a goal.”
“Introduction.” The Hound and Horn 1:1 (1927): 5-6.
When the magazine shifted from being an undergraduate publication, it saw itself assuming a much broader role than at its conception:
“Started seven years ago by undergraduates of Harvard University as a college paper based on the London Criterion, it has come to take the place of the Dial in some respects, and in others has provided an American medium not unlike the Nouvelle Revue FranVaise. It has attempted to provide a repository for distinguished critics and creative writing which, on account of its technical or experimental nature, could not otherwise have been paid for or published, and to acquaint Americans with similar international work”
“Preface.” The Hound and Horn. 3:4 (1934): 563.
Lincoln Kirstein (May 14, 1907 – Jan. 5, 1966)
Editor: Sept. 1927 – Sept. 1934
While a sophomore at Harvard, Kirstein founded The Hound and Horn using “liberal funding” from his father that assured “both financial stability and high production standards” for his magazine (Chielens 141). He shared editorship with freshman Varian Fry when the magazine first began publishing, with eventual help from Alan Tate, Yvor Winters, Bernard Bandler II, and R.P. Blackmur. By 1931, however, he was the sole owner and head editor. During his tenure he helped transition The Hound and Horn from a “Harvard Miscellany” to a leader in New Criticism. He worked to keep the magazine away from politics: though various editors leaned towards Agrarianism, Humanism, and Marxism, he tried to keep their political influences from overtaking the pages. His choice to switch his focus from literature to the ballet in 1934 marked the demise of his little magazine, but also the beginning of a brilliant career directing ballet and founding what would go on to become the New York City Ballet, for which he is now famous (“Kirstein, Lincoln”).
R. P. Blackmur
“Bock Beer and Bermuda Onions”
e. e. cummings
“[so standing, our eyes filled with wind and the]”
“[somewhere i have never traveled, gladly beyond]”
John Dos Passos
Excerpts from 1919
T. S. Eliot
“Second Thoughts about Humanism”
“Difficulties of a Statesman”
“From a Banned Writer to a Banned Singer”
“The Plumet Backet”
“Scenery and George Washington”
“Academic Discourse in Havana”
Vincent Van Gogh
William Carlos Williams
“In the ‘Sconset Bus”
“Hymn to Dispel Hatred at Midnight”
“The Fall of Leaves”
Chielens, Edward E., ed. American Literary Magazines: The Twentieth Century. New York: Greenwood Press, 1992.
Hoffman, Frederick J., Charles Allen, and Carolyn F. Ulrich. The Little Magazine: A History and a Bibliography. Princeton, NJ: Princeton UP, 1947.
The Hound and Horn. 1927 – 1934. New York: Kraus Reprint Corporation, 1966
Image, rollover. “New Arrivals.” Stephen Rose Fine Arts and Books. January 2003. 28 Oct. 2008.
“Kirstein, Lincoln.” Encyclopedia Britannica. 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Davidson College Lib., Davidson, NC. 16 Sept. 2008.
“The Hound & Horn” compiled by Kelly Franklin (Class of ’09, Davidson College)