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Syracuse University

Roycroft Quarterly

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Full-Text Articles in Theory and Criticism

Hobby-Horses, Horseplay, And Stephen Crane's "Black Riders", Donald Vanouse Oct 1976

Hobby-Horses, Horseplay, And Stephen Crane's "Black Riders", Donald Vanouse

The Courier

Not long ago, on a visit to the George Arents Research Library at Syracuse University, I saw a bizarre little illustration on the cover of the Roycroft Quarterly occasioned by the publication of Stephen Crane's first volume of poems, The Black Riders and Other Lines. (Boston: Copeland and Day, 1895). The Roycrofters had substituted polka-dotted rocking horses for the death symbols of Crane's black horsemen. The imagery seemed a surprising anticipation of the Dadaism which occurred about twenty years later in the wake of World War I. The Beardsleyesque, Art Nouveau style of the drawing exemplified the ironies ...