"In spite of all that can be said against our age, what a moment to be alive in. What an epoch for a magazine to emerge in!"
THE McAULEY YEARS
THE SUMMARY OF THE CONTENTS OF THE McAULEY QUADRANTS IS BEING CONVERTED INTO AMAZON E BOOKS
A CONDITION IS THAT THE MATERIAL HAS TO BE TAKEN OFF THIS SITE
As of 12 April 2013 the contents of the other Quadrants can still be found on this site. See below for links.
Quadrant was founded in 1956 and the first four issues appeared in 1957. The organising genius in the venture was Richard Krygier, a Polish-Jewish refugee, and the founding editor was the leading poet James McAuley. Behind the magazine stood the Australian Committee for Cultural Freedom, the Australian arm of the international Congress for Cultural Freedom, dedicated to cultural freedom and the intellectual resistance to communism and its fellow travellers in the West.
Peter Coleman is one of the surviving members of that resistance movement. He wrote The Liberal Conspiracy to chart the rise and fall of the Congress, and he also wrote an account of the selection process when James McAuley became the first editor of Quadrant. McAuley was the sole editor for the first five years and the magazines that appeared during that time have become collectors items because he published the leading poets, essayists and critics of the day.
They stand as a monument to the spirit of freedom, of democratic capitalism and the best aspects of western culture and intellectual life. It will be good to see them put on line for the benefit of people who do not have access to the originals. The contents of the first five years (20 editions) of the McAuley Quadants can be seen below to indicate the riches that will become available when they are put into the public domain.
Rafe Champion, Sydney 2012
The guiding principles, from McAuley's first editorial comment.
To be Australian in our orientation, because we are interested in this country, its people, its problems, its cultural life, its liberties, and its safety;
To publish work of interest and merit on any topic without regard to the affiliations or repute of the author, the sole requirement being that the material should be worth reading;
To be guided, when an editorial attitude is called for with regard to questions of civil liberty or public standards, by the principles underlying the parliamentary institutions of this country and the Common Law - than which we know no better school of freedom and civility and prudence, in the old high sense of those words; for to be a good Australian is to be a local variety of that 'free and lawful man', the traditional ideal of Western civilization.