Friday, December 16, 2016

The Enemy of all Civilized People

Dartmouth students over the years have produced scads of short lived journals. Most are venues for literary output, and some are devoted to specific causes. Surprisingly few have directly engaged in major issues outside of the confines of campus, but we just stumbled on one from the 1920s published by the "Round Table of Dartmouth College" that smacks of the witty, vaguely elite, cultural magazines of the time. It seems to be trying to emulate the American Mercury under H. L. Mencken, or maybe the early New Yorker.

Titled Tomahawk as a nod to Dartmouth's past mascot, it set out to "seriously but without solemnity publish informative and reflective articles on matters touching social well-being" to help determine "How liberal is a liberal college?" Their target is "the enemy of all civilized people, and it finds its expression in bigotry, muddle-headedness, and obscurantism: these are particular to no camp."  So, the presidential candidates all get equal treatment and there is a lament about how difficult it is to get conservative speakers relative to liberal or radical ones on campus. Tomahawk only lasted a year, but you can still read it here in the Library by a asking for DC HIST LH1.D3T6. It is a pretty interesting window (and counter to The Dartmouth) into the campus zeitgeist of the 1920s.

After break, on January 11th from 3:00-6:00, the Library will be holding an open house for students currently publishing journals and for those thinking of starting one. Who knows, with a little more support a journal like Tomahawk (hopefully with a better name!) might have thrived--we would have loved to see what it had to say when so many students were being radicalized on campus in the 1930s.

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