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Agrarians, The

The Fugitive

a name given to specific Southern US poets and writers who espoused an ideology that championed regionalism and an agrarian economy for the South in the late 1920s and early 1930s. This group published The Fugitive (19225), a bi-monthly magazine based in Nashville, Tennessee, which combined poetry and criticism attacking the ‘high-caste Brahmins of the Old South’, in the phrase of the editorial. Perceiving themselves to have been invaded by Northern capitalist monopolies, their critique was aimed at what they took to be the cultural provincialism and fast-growing materialism of the region. Most of the contributors were associated with Vanderbilt University, among them Donald Davidson, Cleanth Brooks, Andrew Lytle, Merrill Moore, John Crowe Ransom, Laura Riding, Allen Tate, and Robert Penn Warren, and what came to be known as the ‘Southern Literary Renaissance’ sprang from the work centred on this group. The magazine was also a mouthpiece for the ideology, theory, and techniques of New Criticism, a form of critical analysis which focused on the elements of the isolated literary work as they illuminate the whole. It characterized itself as upholding, in the poetic and aesthetic realm, the sensuous integrity of human experience which was being demolished by the activities of scientific rationalism.

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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: 110A Piccadilly to Nelson Algren Biography