December 1953

In This Issue

Explore the December 1953 print edition below. Or to discover more writing from the pages of The Atlantic, browse the full archive.


  • The Atlantic Report on the World Today: Washington

  • Accent on Living

  • Our Peruvian Turkey

    FLORENCE P. HODGSON is the wife of a doctor on the staff of the Mayo Clinic. This is her first appearance in the Atlantic.

  • Record Reviews

  • Groucho Sent Me

    KYLE CRICHTON was for fifteen years a staff writer on Collier’s, specializing in stage and screen subjects. He is the author of a biography of the Marx Brothers, and a novel recently was published by Crown.

  • The Hour

  • Colas on the Nile

    CHARLES J. ROLO,who writes “Reader’s Choice” for the Atlantic Bookshelf, spends several months each year traveling in Europe. Here is his report on his recent sojourn in Egypt.

  • Stillicide

  • Malaya

  • English as She's Not Taught

    Scholar, author, and teacher, JACQUES BARZUN was born and schooled in France, came to this country in 1919, was naturalized in 1933, and has been teaching history at Columbia University for more than two decades. A writer for the periodical press since the age of seventeen, he has published a dozen volumes of scholarship and social comment. His latest work, to appear in early spring, is God’s Country and Mine, which he calls “a declaration of love spiced with a few harsh words.”

  • The Violins of Saint-Jacques

    A wandering Englishman whose gift of languages and whose audacity remind one of Lawrence of Arabia, PATRICK LEIGH FERMOR was the British Commando who during the war commanded the operation which ambushed, captured, and evacuated General Kreipe, German Commander of the Sebastopol Division in Crete. His book, The Traveller’s Tree, a journey through the Caribbean Islands, was awarded the Heinemann Foundation Prize for 1950 and a Kemsley Prize. Now from that same rich and storied background comes this gay and original short novel which the Atlantic is happy to publish in three installments.

  • Western Germany

  • Billions or Bargains

    A graduate of Yale and a lawyer who served in Military Intelligence during World War II, JONATHAN B. BINGHAM was associated with the Point Four program as either Deputy or Acting Administrator of the Technical Cooperation Administration during the period from October, 1951, to March, 1953, when the program really got under way. The following paper is drawn from his book, Shirt-Sleeve Diplomacy, to be published early in the new year by John Day.

  • An Editor's Creed

    FREDERICK LEWIS ALLEN, who retired as Editor of Harper’s Magazine on September 30 of this year, began his editorial career as the assistant editor of the Atlantic Monthly in 1914, For thirty years he was affiliated with Harper’s Magazine and for twelve years was its able and discriminating Editor-in-Chief. At the dinner which was given in his honor, Mr. Allen expressed his credo in words which will be meaningful to all aspirants in American letters. The author of Only Yesterday, The Big Change, The Lords of Creation, The Great Pierpont Morgan, he now plans to devote more time to his writing; and in recognition of this we think it appropriate to reprint the poem by Oliver Wendell Holmes which follows Mr. Allen’s remarks.

  • Cacoëthes Scribendi

  • Faith and the Scientist

    Distinguished for his teaching and for his research in the field of optics, GEORGE RUSSELL HARRISON has been Dean of Science at Massachusetts Institute of Technology since 1942. A scientist who can write with clarity for the layman, he is the author of Atoms in Action and How Things Work; and last spring when invited to deliver the Stearns Lecture at Phillips Academy, Andover, he produced this memorable and affirmative address.

  • Second Chance for the South

    It is no coincidence that struggles over control in Louisiana and Texas were keys to the outcome of both Conventions in 1952. These two states especially, in the regions bordering the Gulf, have developed a rich new empire, as dynamic as any this country has seen, and what its future is to be is for a historian to decipher. OSCAR HANDLIN is Associate Professor of History at Harvard and the author of Boston’s Immigrants, Commonwealth, and This Was America. His fourth book, The Uprooted, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for History in 1951.

  • The Poet and His Poem

  • City Hall Politics in Italy

    EDGAR ANSEL MOWRER began his adventurous career as a foreign correspondent on the western front in 1914, little more than a year after his graduation from the University of Michigan. He scored several scoops in Flanders, was twice arrested for espionage, and in 1915 was shifted to Italy, a country of which he now possesses expert knowledge. He left Rome in 1922 when he no longer found it possible to work under Fascist censorship. He covered the last days of the Weimar Republic and in 1932 received the Pulitzer Prize for the “best correspondence from abroad.” He was the first American journalist to be expelled by Hitler, but neither dictators nor censors have been able to suppress his pertinent, penetrating, and passionate exposure of the touchy situations in Europe.

  • A Great Reckoning in a Little Room

    GEOFFREY BUSH is a writer who has lived most of his twenty-four years in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In 1950 he was graduated summa cum laude from Harvard; the next two years he spent at Oxford on a Rhodes Scholarship; and now he is back at Harvard as a Junior Fellow. He has recently completed a critical study of the idea of nature in Shakespeare’s plays; and like so many other young American writers who have made a temporary home in universities, he is trying to find out whether the creative and the academic life can be reconciled. This story first appeared in the undergraduate magazine, the Harvard Advocate.

  • Ideal Landscape

  • The Red-Headed Africans

    Physician and teacher, JOHN F. BROCK, M.D., is Professor of Medicine at the University of Cape Town and an authority on the nutritional diseases so widespread in South and Control Africa. A consultant in nutrition for the World Health Organization, he made a far-reaching survey of the equatorial belt from Zanzibar in the east to Dakar in the west; and his findings are clearly stated in the significant paper which follows.

  • Nearing Ninety

    Biographer and editor whose roots go back to Bristol, Rhode Island, MARK ANTONY DE WOLFE HOWE is the Dean of Atlantic contributors, having made his first appearance in our columns sixty years ago last spring. Mr. Howe published his autobiography, A Venture in Remembrance, at the age of seventy-seven; in the dozen years intervening, despite the physical handicaps which accompany his sapience, he has worked with unflagging zeal at six books and a postscript to his reminiscences, from which we have selected these appealing pages.

  • Private Thoughts of a Curmudgeon

    FRANCES PERKINS and Harold L. Ickes sat side by side through the twelve years of F.D.R.’s Cabinet, and she is admirably qualified to appraise his Secret Diary, the first volume of which Simon & Schuster have just published. A Bostonian, Miss Perkins took her A.B. at Mount Holyoke in 1902, made a name for herself as Industrial Commissioner for New York State from 1929 to 1933, and served as Secretary of Labor from 1933 to 1945, the first American woman to hold a Cabinet post.

  • Conrad Aiken: The Poet

    Most widely recognized as a poet, Conrad Aiken has achieved distinction for his short stories, novels, essays, and recently his autobiographical narrative, Ushant. On the occasion of his Collected Poems, published this fall by Oxford University Press, the Atlantic invited the distinguished critic and Princeton scholar,R. P. BLACKMUR, to evaluate Mr. Aiken's contribution to letters and to explore the creative process of the poet.

  • The Peripatetic Reviewer

  • Books The Editors Like

  • Reader's Choice

  • The Alleys of Marrakesh

  • New World Writing

  • Dear Mrs. Boswell

  • One

  • New Books for Children

    MARGARET FORD TVIERAN was Children’s Page Editor of the Boston Herald for twenty-three years. She is the author of a juvenile, David and the Magic Powder, and at present is working with her husband, John Kieran, on a young people’s Life of Audubon.

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