The Kenyon Review is throwing a party—make that two parties—to commemorate its 75th anniversary. But the journal has more to celebrate than longevity.
The most recent issue of the Review sported a new rectangular design, featuring 120 pages instead of the usual 200. Because the journal will now publish six times a year instead of four, the amount of content over a year won’t change but it will come in more manageable increments, said editor David Lynn ‘76, professor of English. The format also fits more easily not only in mailboxes, but in purses, jackets, and backpacks.
“I had increasingly become of the persuasion that when a 200- or 220-page issue arrived in their mailbox, people were intimidated,” Lynn said. “They would set it aside for later when they had more time. And of course the ‘more time’ never happens.” He calls the new design “fresh and inviting. The covers make you want to pick it up and look through it—which is, of course, the goal.”
To mark the occasion, a party at Kenyon will coincide with the Kenyon Review Literary Festival. The festival opens on October 23 with featured readings by Kenyon Review fellows Jamaal May and Melinda Moustakis in the Community Foundation Theater in the Gund Gallery, followed by a cake reception (it is a birthday party, after all). The novelist Ann Pratchett, named as the recipient of the Kenyon Review Award for Literary Achievement, reads from her work during the Denham Sutcliffe Memorial Lecture on October 25 in Rosse Hall.
The Review is also throwing a casual party in New York City on November 5 at the Archive Bar at 36th Street between Madison and 5th avenues, as a prelude to the formal literary achievement gala which will honor Pratchett the following night at the Four Seasons.
Lynn said that while he is proud to acknowledge the journal’s long history of publication, the real celebration is the look to the future. “What I’m trying to do with the redesign is position our print publication to take us into another generation.”