Salient: Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 28, No. 7. 1965.
A New Vic. Publication
Students of the Faculty of Languages and Literature would be advised to watch for the appearance of a new literary journal under the name Words.
IT has been launched as a result of combined staff-student initiative, and will contain articles derived from and of particular interest to courses in English. Classics, and Modern Languages at Victoria. It is hoped that it will provide an outlet for the best academic work done by students in the course of reading for their degree, as well as provide a wider audience for material originally given in lecture-form by members of staff.
The first issue, due to appear shortly, will include an essay by Dr. R. T. Savage on "Nature and Second Nature; Swift's 'Descriptions'," an article by Mr. J. Fowler on eighteenth century pastoral, and a study by Professor H. A. Murray on the importance of the Prometheus myth to Goethe, Professor P. T. Hoffmann will contribute a critical essay on "words." Other articles will continue a general eighteenth century emphasis. The next issue, which may appear later this year, will deal similarly with the Renaissance period (including studies of Dante and Shakespeare); and the third, due to be released in 1966, will be devoted to nineteenth and twentieth century literature. A medieval issue has also been suggested.
The forthcoming edition will be of considerable interest to students in many University courses; but its emphasis is rather more upon the staff contributions that upon those from students, as is perhaps inevitable for a first volume. It is hoped, however, that this predominance will not continue. Students who wish to submit articles for publication, may do so to Mr. Peter Robb, care of the Student Union Office. Staff members will be sending their contributions to Professor P. T. Hoffmann of the Department of German.
Words is to be published by Professor D. F. McKenzie at the Wai-te-ata Press. It will be available at a price of five shillings an issue, and subscriptions for the first two issues may be sent in advance to the Publications Manager, Mr. Brian Opie, Department of English.
The most important characteristics of Words, claim the publication committee, are that it is to be firmly grounded in teaching and learning: that it will make usefully available to all other students of literature the best work which some of their number have done and so help to set higher standards for critical writing: and that it will bring together studies of the several literatures taught at this University and perhaps help thereby to broaden the literary interests of students.
These are high ideals. They correspond in an interesting way with the plans for further studies, perhaps a unit, in comparative literature. And should the members of departments such as Music, History and Philosophy, co-operate in producing articles relating their interests to those of the journal, then Words might well become a meeting-point for different disciplines. This prospect, coupled with a demand for higher standards, must make the future for Words seem as intriguing as its title.
Sirs,—In your last issue, in reply to my implication that some of his recent poetry was adolescent in character, Mr. Louis Johnson relegated me to the nursery. From there, a word: Not to perpetuate absurdity, but to qualify a remark that was attributed to me, that Mr. Johnson's letter was "amusingly irrelevant."
"Irrelevant" I certainly said. I might have added "totally uncritical" and "largely incoherent." But "amusingly" I did not say. For my impression was far from one of amusement. Mr. Johnson is a man who wrote some poems of outstanding promise, a long time ago. It can only be called sad that he should now indulge in this particular form of self-destruction.
P. G. Robb