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Ford’s Better Idea

To the Editors:

We, the undersigned writers and editors, wish strongly to protest the Ford Foundation’s recent $50,000 grant to the International Association for Cultural Freedom in Paris as “emergency assistance” for the publication costs of Encounter, published in England. This grant, by an organization that on many previous occasions has claimed a lack of funds for the support of American literary magazines, is grossly insulting to American editors and writers. It is also damaging to American literary magazines in putting them at a competitive disadvantage, since the grant will be used by Encounter, specifically to “seek increased circulation in the United States.” We are made uneasy, as well, by the political implications of this effort to promote and expand Encounter‘s influence in this country.

All in all, the action seems to us short-sighted, if not faintly scandalous, and we urge the Ford Foundation and other organizations concerned with cultural endeavors in the United States to take seriously their responsibility to our literary magazines.

Hannah Arendt, Donald Barthelme; Eric Bentley, Norman Birnbaum, James Boatwright—Shenandoah, Robert Boyers—Salmagundi, Peter Brooks, Robert Brustein, Jules Chametzky—The Massachusetts Review, Jerome Charyn—Executive Editor Fiction, William Cole, Paul Cowan, Stanley Diamond, Morris Dickstein, Martin Duberman, Thomas R. Edwards, George P. Elliott—New Critic, Barabara Epstein—The New York Review of Books, Jules Feiffer, Leslie A. Fiedler, Frances FitzGerald, William H. Gass, Richard Gilman, Allen Ginsberg, Jim Harrison—Sumac, Robert L. Heilbroner, Nat Hentoff, Caroline Rand Herron—Partisan Review, John Hollander, Richard Howard—The American Review, June Jordan, Alfred Kazin, Frank Kermode, Carolyn Kizer—founder, former editor Poetry Northwest, Christopher Lasch, Denise Levertov, Robert Jay Lifton, Jack Ludwig, Andrew Lytle—The Sewanee Review, Dwight Macdonald, Norman Mailer, Bernard Malamud, Steven Marcus, Mary McCarthy, Carey McWilliams—The Nation, William Meredith, Leonard Michaels—West Coast Editor Fiction, Arthur Miller, Mark Jay Mirsky—Fiction, Frederick Morgan—The Hudson Review, Julian Moynahan, Larry Neal, Jack Newfield—The Village Voice, Charles Newman—Tri-Quarterly, William Phillips—Partisan Review, Richard Poirier, Richard Pollak—[more], Adrienne Rich, Harold Rosenberg, Robert Silvers—The New York Review of Books, Theodore Solotaroff—The American Review, Susan Sontag, Stephen Spender, William Styron, Ronald Sukenick, May Natalie Tabak, Michael Thelwell, Reed Whittemore—The New Republic, Richard Wilbur, L. Woiwode—New Yorker, Rudolph Wurlitzer, Helen Yglesias, Jose Yglesias

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