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KULCHUR - Vol. 2 No. 5 - Spring 1962

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THE GRAPHIC: New York's Craziest Newspaper [Original Working Typescript for THE NEW YORK GRAPHIC: The World's Zaniest Newspaper]

COHEN, Lester

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Price: $2,500.00

nd [ca. 1960]. 4to. 8.5î x 11î original typescript on a rather ad-hoc collection of papers (including hotel and other commercial letterheads). 375pp.+, heavily revised and corrected in Cohen's hand. Generally very good. First half of typescript rather toned and a bit brittle. Occasional chipping to edges. Else sound and complete. Originally housed in a box (now perished) to which was glued an apparent dust-jacket mock-up for a book by Cohen entitled THE FABULOUS WORLD OF HORACE LIVERIGHT. This and a portion of the spine (which was glued to the side of the box and lists Bobbs Merrill as publisher) have both been preserved. In black marker the Liveright title has been crossed out and ìN.Y. Evening Graphic The World's Craziest Newspaperî added with an arrow to Cohen's name on the mock-up. (We find no evidence of a book by that title ever having been published, nor of any Liveright biography by Cohen) (Item ID: 12775)

THE NEW YORK GRAPHIC (1924-1932) was one of the earliest and most notorious tabloid newspapers of the 20th century. Though sensationalism and yellow journalism had long been part of the American fourth estate, THE GRAPHICís unique mix of lurid detail, near-truths, half-truths, outright lies, doctored photographs, celebrity culture, and criminal antics made it the progenitor not only of THE ENQUIRER or WEEKLY WORLD NEWS, but also more recent exploitive tabloid incarnations such as TMZ. Cohen was the paper's Contest Editor ó another unique feature of the paper ó and one for which it would become famous. His memoir, published in 1964 by Chilton Books, is a chatty and opinionated behind-the-scenes look at THE GRAPHIC. The typescript here offered is apparently his working copy. Heavily annotated in his hand, it contains many hundreds of changes, with at least several -ó and more typically many ó corrections, revisions, edits, etc. to each page. Wildly popular in its day, THE GRAPHIC nonetheless was so reviled when published that no institution retained copies and there is no known complete run of the paper. Its most extensive holdings are at the New York Public Library, which has an incomplete microfilm version. This typescript, therefore, represents a rare primary document of one New York's most controversial but culturally important periodicals.

By This Author: COHEN, Lester
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