Long News in the Short Century

Magazines & Presses

Long News in the Short Century

Barbara Henning
New York

Vol. 1, nos. 1–5 (1991–94).

Long News in the Short Century, vol. 1, no. 1 (1991).

In 1990, after a fierce tenure battle, I decided to put all my efforts (outside of raising children and teaching at Long Island University) into poetry and poetic community. I remember sitting in a dark cubical at LIU planning this magazine with Lewis Warsh, and then in cafés at night with Michael Pelias, Don Dombowsky, and Sally Young. Long News was always a communal project. Tyrone Williams, Chris Tysh, and Paul Buck joined us as contributing editors. Tyrone came up with “Long News.” I believe Michael Pelias added “in the Short Century.”  Sally Young was art editor for the first issue and then contributing art editor thereafter, along with Rick Franklin. Miranda Maher was the art editor for issues 2 through 5. However, we all contributed visuals and writing. Right from the beginning the magazine had a strong Detroit connection—Miranda, Chris, Tyrone, Sally, and I had lived in Detroit. Sally, Tyrone, and I were born there.

The father of my children, Allen Saperstein, another Detroiter, donated the first issue; he was a printer in Brooklyn. I typeset the first issue in the back of his store, Copycat; Allen printed it on resume paper; then we collated it and took it to his friend Elliot’s shop on 4th Avenue for cutting and binding.

Long News in the Short Century 5 (1994). Cover by Carolee Schneemann.

I spent many weekends in galleries with Miranda looking for possible artists to invite; in our discussions and throughout the five issues, we learned to see writing as visual and visuals as writing. The dialogue and even arguments between editors was exciting and opened up intellectual awareness and creative possibilities. We dedicated the second issue to mourning the losses in the Gulf War. In the fourth issue, Michael Pelias and Charles Wolfe edited a section commemorating the life of Felix Guattari, radical psychoanalyst and theorist; included was a beautiful eulogy by Toni Negri and some poetic essays on the concept of the One. Shortly before issue 5, David Rattray died. We had published some of David’s poems in almost every issue; I remember several times going uptown to his office at Reader’s Digest to pick up poems. A homage to David was included in issue 5 with a photo of him on the cover from an installation by Carolee Schneemann.

For the most part, we published experimental art and writing that addressed tyranny, oppression, censorship, and that made a social commentary. We wanted to transgress static ideas about culture and language, engaging social and political transformation. We had grants from the Fund for Poetry and NY Council for the Arts. Each issue was longer, more focused, and more conceptual. Later issues also included philosophical essays.

Why did we stop? It was a tremendous amount of work; I was also a single mother with two teenagers. Five was enough. It was time to move on to something else.

— Barbara Henning, New York, March 2017


David Abel
Iris Adler
Stavit Allweis
Richard Armijo
Stanley Aronowitz
Danny Barak
Anna Barak
Stephen Barber
Barbara Barg
Christelle Barois
Todd Baron
David Barton
Martine Bellen
Charles Bernstein
Christian Boltanski
Bogdan Borkowski
Nicole Brossard
Laynie Browne
Paul Buck
Jeffrey Byrd
Sophie Calle
Tom Clark
Clark Coolidge
William Corbett
Lynn Crawford
Denise Columb
Chris Custer
Tina Darragh
Don David Dombowsky
Peter de Rous
Johan de Wit
Diane di Prima
Leonardo Drew
Lynne Dreyer
Johanna Drucker
Françoise Duvivier
Peter Edel
Barbara Einzig
Cheri Eisenberg
Elaine Equi
Elke Erb
Cheryl Fish
Tara Francalossi
Rick Franklin
Deborah Freedman
Aki Fujiyoshi
Christopher Gallagher
Q.E.D. Giguere
John Godfrey
Philip Good
Paul Green
Joe Groppuso
Felix Guattari
Robert V. Hale
Molly Hankwitz
Harriette Hartigan
John Hartigan
Barbara Henning
Jerry Herron
Betty Sue Hertz
Bob Holman
Eric Holzman
Shigeo Honda
Fanny Howe
David Humphrey
Kim Hunter
Jeffrey Jacques
Kate Johnson
Thom Jurek
Maho Kino
Julius Klein
Richard Kostelanetz
Kathe Kowalski
Bill Kushner
Michelle Kwiatkowska
Thomas Lail
Françoise Laruelle
Annette Lemieux
Gary Lenhart
Lisa Lesniak
David Letendre

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