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Masses


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(1911–53),

weekly journal of news and social criticism, founded at New York by Piet Vlag as “an outgrowth of the cooperative side of Socialist activity.” Under the editorship of Thomas Seltzer, it pursued no consistent political policy, and stressed literature with a liberal bias, drawing largely upon European fiction by such authors as Sudermann and Bjorkman. In 1912 Max Eastman became editor, assisted by Floyd Dell, John Reed, and others, and the magazine followed a more consistently Socialist policy, until it was suppressed by the government (Dec. 1918). Three months later, the editors founded The Liberator, a weekly journal of social criticism with an increasingly radical point of view. In 1922 the staff voted to affiliate the magazine with the Communist party. Suspended in 1924, it was revived in 1926 as the New Masses and combined the political views of The Liberator and the aesthetics of The Masses. In 1948 it merged with another Marxist journal to become the monthly Masses and Mainstream.

Subjects: Literary Studies (20th Century onwards).


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