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Grant number like: FA-53712-08

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Susan L. Goodman
University of Delaware (Newark, DE 19716-0099)

Fellowships for University Teachers
Research Programs

$50,400 (approved)
$50,400 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2009 – 12/31/2009

The Atlantic Monthly and the "American Idea"

The men who gave birth to The Atlantic Monthly believed that the magazine could not only raise the level of American culture but also determine its direction. They committed themselves to promoting an "American idea," which might be defined variously as an American perspective, voice, character, or philosophy. The Atlantic Monthly touched nearly all aspects of American life, and over the decades, contributors agreed to disagree on a range of issues from Reconstruction to education, suffrage, religion, and the humanities. My study--unlike Mark DeWolfe Howe's The Atlantic Monthly and Its Makers (1977) and Ellery Sedgwick's The Atlantic Monthly, 1857-1909 (1994), which give a history of the magazine through its editors and their shifting policies--will offer a cultural and biographical approach to the workings of the magazine, the range of its subscribers, and its role in the making of American culture.