Corrections to Article on Swarthmore Literary Review

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

Some information presented in the article International Poetry Magazine Created at Swarthmore; Charter Denied was incorrect regarding the charter-status of the Night Café and Pun/ctum!!!.

A total of 19 groups requested to be chartered, but only thirteen were accepted. Among those charter requests, several were publications of which the following were noted in the previous article: Night Café, a long-article literary magazine, Pun/ctum, a photography magazine, and the Swarthmore Literary Review, an international poetry magazine based at Swarthmore.

Although the Swarthmore Literary Review was denied approval, the decision for the other two magazines are still pending. “Either or both of them still may become chartered, the charter committee is still debating the issue,” said Charter Committee Chair Paul Apollo ’09.

Pun/ctum originally submitted a charter application last September, according to editor Linda Huang ’08. Upon being denied, the editors of the magazine reapplied this semester. The magazine originally requested $3300 annually in funding, said Huang. In an interview last month, Apollo said that the organizers requested $11,000-$15,000 when they came to Charter Committee this semester.

The Night Café originally submitted a charter application with a budget request for $24,000 annual. However, editors later revised their request to $12,000. “The 24,000 was for color gloss because the question of publishing art came up,” said co-founder Eli Epstein-Deutsch ‘10. “But we revised our estimate based on a black and white release. Currently that’s the amount of money we’re asking for the charter,” he said.

Both publications are competing with the Equestrian club for chartering and funding. “Furthermore, we are considering another very expensive group, the Equestrian Club. It is very doubtful that we will be able to charter all three,” said Apollo.

Apollo reiterated the reasons justifying the charter committee’s decision to deny the Swarthmore Literary Review’s proposal. “The Swarthmore Review looks to be an excellent publication. It was the opinion of the Charter Committee, however that this group did not fall under the criteria of the Student Activity Fund,” said Apollo.

Because students pay into the Student Activities Fund, that money is limited to providing student opportunities for student activities. “While it met second part of the requirement, it fell short on the first. While [the editors] said they would have a section of Swarthmore writers, it was not the primary mission of the group,” said Apollo.

Another reason was that the committee considered the relevant part of the magazine to be redundant. “Furthermore, … part of its missions is currently accounted for by Small Craft Warnings,” explained Apollo. “While there are so many on campus groups that are struggling to get all of the funding that they want and need to fulfill their mission, we felt that it would be impertinent for the activity fee to get in to the market of an international journal of poetry.”

While D’Silva said that he hoped the Review would gain the same prominence of the Yale Review, Apollo used the same reason to justify not supporting it with student budget funds. “I would like to point out that the Yale and Middlebury Reviews, at least, are not paid for out of the student activity funds of those particular institutions,” said Apollo. The Student Budget Committee currently funds 22 student publications.

Earlier this morning, Huang contacted the Gazette to say that Pun/ctum had been chartered late last night.


  1. ‘Another reason was that the committee considered the relevant part of the magazine to be redundant. “Furthermore, … part of its missions is currently accounted for by Small Craft Warnings,” explained Apollo.’

    While I can understand the committee’s decision to stick to the letter of SBC rules and deny us funding, what I do not understand is why they consider us redundant, especially in comparison to Small Craft Warnings. This seems to me to be an example of the committee looking at one facet of the magazine, and not the whole picture. Yes, we both publish poetry, but The Swarthmore Literary Review expands readership by creating a new audience outside the community, and brings in talented writers from outside the college, in one magazine. Small Craft Warnings does neither of these things.

    If the reason for denying funding is that we go outside the scope of magazines such as Small Craft Warnings in soliciting work from outside the student body, then logically we are not doing the same thing, i.e. our work is not redundant. It’s either one or the other.

    I read in the Phoenix article of April 3rd on new publications, that an editor from Small Craft Warnings is quoted about the creative writing submissions to Small Craft diminishing over the years. Given this background, it’s hard for me to understand why a magazine such as ours, which addresses this issue and both increases submissions and the audience for such work, is seen as redundant.

    Rahul D’Silva ’08
    Co-founder and co-editor
    The Swarthmore Literary Review

  2. It looked like what Apollo was trying to say was the part of your mission that could be paid for with the activity fee was redundant. Makes sense that he’d single that out, as it was what he could have justified paying for.

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