Lasky, Melvin J.

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British Library Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue : Person : Description : ark:/81055/vdc_100000001039.0x000270

Der Monat, a German-language political and cultural journal, first appeared in Germany in October 1948. After the Allied occupation of Germany in November 1944, all German media services were suspended. The Office of the Military Government for Germany (US) [OMGUS] filled the information gap, which resulted from this prohibition with the issuing of various so-called "overt publications," of which Der Monat was the fifth to appear. Melvin J. Lasky, the first editor of Der Monat, worked out of the Political Information Branch of the Information Services Division of the OMGUS, and in close association with the New York Field Office. German editors joined the staff in later years.

Der Monat's purpose was two-fold: to serve as a weapon against communism and fascism, and to be a voice for Western ideals, assisting Germany and German intellectuals in finding their place in the western orbit after years of isolation. Der Monat's orientation was unmistakably American, but its founders intended the review to be international in range and impact, avoiding narrow, doctrinaire positions. Its contents reflected a concern for covering a broad range of political and cultural issues, and included articles, book excerpts, short stories, book reviews, and theater and film articles and reviews. Internationally acclaimed figures such as Bertrand Russell, Arnold Toynbee, Jean-Paul Sartre, James Agee and Rebecca West contributed to early issues.

Initial response in the West to the publication of Der Monat was enthusiastic. Critics hailed it as an intellectual journal of the first rank. In addition, Der Monat also played an important role as a weapon in the cold war. Large numbers of the journal were smuggled into East Germany and other Soviet bloc countries, despite Soviet efforts to keep it out.

By 1954, after six years of U. S. government sponsorship, Der Monat became a private journal, independently published by the Gesellschaft für Internationale Publizistik. The end of the allied occupation of Germany and a growing concern for Germanization called into question the propriety of the U. S. government's ongoing sponsorship of Der Monat. A grant from the Ford Foundation made possible Der Monat's transition to private status. During its remaining years of publication, Der Monat enjoyed a close association with the International Association for Cultural Freedom.

As more and more publications similar in scope and interest to Der Monat appeared in Germany, its readership began to decline. The magazine suffered financial setbacks, which eventually made continued publication impossible. The last issue appeared in March 1971.

From the guide to the Der Monat. Records, 1948-1971, (Special Collections Research Center University of Chicago Library 1100 East 57th Street Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Macdonald, Dwight. Dwight Macdonald papers, 1865-1984 (bulk 1920-1978) Yale University Library
referencedIn Ruth Fischer papers, 1925-1961 (inclusive) 1940-1961 (bulk). Houghton Library
referencedIn Robert Pick papers, 1915-1977. Houghton Library
referencedIn Eastman mss., 1892-1968 Lilly Library (Indiana University, Bloomington)
referencedIn Dwight Macdonald papers, 1865-1984 (bulk 1920-1978) Yale University. Department of Manuscripts and Archives
referencedIn Nicolas Nabokov Papers TXRC98-A21., 1907, 1950-1978 Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
referencedIn Bradbury, M. mss. II, 1949-1993 Lilly Library (Indiana University, Bloomington)
creatorOf Nabokov, Nicolas, 1903-1978. Nicolas Nabokov Papers, 1907, 1950-1978. Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
referencedIn Papers of Robert Graves: Correspondence (arranged by correspondent), c1909 to 2004 St John's College, Oxford
creatorOf Strachey/Holroyd Papers. Vol. xlvii (ff. 146). 1968-1993.includes:ff. 1-3 George K. Simson, of the University of Hawaii: Letters to M. Holroyd: 1964-2001: Partly photocopy.ff. 5-6 Robert Halsband: Letters to M. Holroyd: 1968.f. 7 Christopher ..., 1968-1993 British Library
referencedIn New Directions Publishing Corp. records, ca. 1933-1997. Houghton Library
referencedIn Michael Josselson Papers TXRC98-A0., 1914-1991, (bulk 1960-1978) Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
creatorOf Josselson, Michael. Michael Josselson Papers, 1914-1991 (bulk 1960-1978). Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
referencedIn Anthony Burgess Papers TXRC00-A18., 1956-1997 (bulk 1970s-1980s) Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
creatorOf Lasky, Melvin J. Letters, 1948-1954, to Lewis Mumford. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn New York Times Company records. A.M. Rosenthal papers, 1955-1994, 1967-1986 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
creatorOf Der Monat. Records, 1948-1971 Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library,
creatorOf Halle, Louis Joseph, 1910-. Papers of Louis J. Halle [manuscript], 1938-1987. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Levin, Harry. Harry Levin Papers. 1920-1995. Harvard University, Houghton Library
creatorOf Vol. xv (ff. 242). Jebb, Eleanor – Lewin, Ronald.includes:f. 1 Evelyn Arthur St John Waugh, novelist: Eleanor Jebb, daughter of Hilaire Belloc; wife of R Jebb: Letter to Evelyn Arthur St John Waugh from Eleanor Jebb: 1951.ff. 2-7v Evelyn Arthur ... British Library
referencedIn Kermode, Frank, 1919-2010. Sir Frank Kermode papers 1951-2005. Princeton University Library
referencedIn Robert Manning papers, 1938-1993. Houghton Library
creatorOf Healing, Bryan. Letters, 1960-1966, to Lewis Mumford. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Ruth Fischer papers, 1925-1961 (inclusive) 1940-1961 (bulk). Houghton Library
referencedIn Boris Souvarine papers, 1915-1984 (inclusive), 1940-1984 (bulk). Houghton Library
referencedIn Ruth Fischer papers, 1925-1961 (inclusive) 1940-1961 (bulk). Houghton Library
creatorOf Burgess, Anthony, 1917-1993. Anthony Burgess Papers, 1956-1997. Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
referencedIn The Nation, records, 1879-1974 (inclusive), 1920-1955 (bulk). Houghton Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Bradbury, Malcolm, 1932-2000 person
associatedWith Burgess, Anthony, 1917-1993 person
associatedWith Eastman, Max, 1883-1969 person
correspondedWith Fischer, Ruth, 1895- person
associatedWith Graves, Robert Windham, 1858-1934 person
associatedWith Halle, Louis Joseph, 1910- person
associatedWith International Association for Cultural Freedom corporateBody
associatedWith Josselson, Michael. person
associatedWith Josselson, Michael, 1908-1978 person
correspondedWith Kermode, Frank, 1919-2010. person
associatedWith Levin, Harry, 1912-1994 person
associatedWith Macdonald, Dwight. person
associatedWith MacDonald, Dwight. person
associatedWith Manning, Robert, 1919- person
associatedWith Nabokov, Nicolas, 1903-1978 person
correspondedWith Nation (New York, N.Y. : 1865). corporateBody
correspondedWith New Directions Publishing Corp. corporateBody
correspondedWith Pick, Robert, 1898- person
associatedWith Rosenthal, A. M. (Abraham Michael), 1922-2006 person
correspondedWith Souvarine, Boris. person
Place Name Admin Code Country


Birth 1920-01-15

Death 2004-05-19




Ark ID: w6wq0612

SNAC ID: 8627501