Funding and the Making of Culture: The Case of the Evergreen (1895–1897)
Sourced mostly by documents from Patrick Geddes’s archive at Strathclyde University (SUA, Glasgow), including accounts and rough drafts, this article reveals the backstage organization of the Evergreen, a Northern Seasonal (Edinburg and London, 1895-97), as well as the financial and commercial concerns the amateur editors an aesthetic magazine had to face. The economics of publishing and the various stages through which the production of the Evergreen moved are explored. Three aspects, given the original editors’ project, inform the final product: the publishing venture (printing and financial aspects); the aesthetic medium (format, lay-out and artwork, as well as the magazine’s circulation); promoting culture (a Celtic Revival through international networks). Cultural activities related to the magazine served as platform for dialogue between literature, art, science, life, tradition, and modernity. A so-called ‘little magazine’ seen from the business perspective helps better understand the networks of periodicals’ diffusion and reception and the role they may play in a cultural marketplace. As methodology, this clarifies the compromises made under the hardbound cover of an aesthetically appealing magazine, and shows how the editors adapted their aesthetic and political ideals to material matters.
Copyright (c) 2016 Elisa Grilli
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