The Pageant and its Foreword



An editorial note is one of the best, most accessible ways to enter into a little magazine for it offers the reader some insight into the theory and ideas behind that specific volume. Interestingly, The Pageant replaces the editorial note (which was common in the little magazines, especially in The Savoy) with a Foreword that essentially restates the information that is on the Contents page and foregrounds the authorial property, rather than authorial intent, in the minds of readers.

This makes me question whether the editors of The Pageant, Charles Shannon and Gleeson White, did not have a specific editorial ideology behind their magazine or if they simply decided it was not relevant to share. The Foreword’s focus on the wood-cutting, frontispiece, plates, and picture interleaving suggests a focus on the physicality of the magazine and its printing procedures more than any kind of artistic vision. As was mentioned in class, Shannon and White did have artistic goals for their work, so it is very interesting that they do not include an editorial note. Did they perhaps want their work to speak for itself without the kind of initial bias that might be invoked with a note at the beginning of the edition? Or are they more concerned about clearly indicating what work belonged to whom?

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