Era 4: 1950-1957

Black Mountain College Era 4: 1950-1957

Black Mountain College underwent a period of administrative turnover after the departure of Josef Albers as Rector in 1949. Poet and scholar Charles Olson stepped in as Rector between 1953 and 1956 and the literary arts, notably poetry, flourished, which became one of Black Mountain College’s greatest, most lasting contributions to the arts. From this emerged a school of poets and poetry, a realized movement – known as the Black Mountain School of Poets – though that School would not be canonized until the appearance of The New American Poetry, edited by Donald Allen, in 1960. Robert Creeley edited seven volumes of Black Mountain Review during this time. One of the most influential and provocative little magazines of the era – and still considered legendary – it published critical and creative work by cutting-edge, often experimental, writers, who were at odds with the established literary establishment of the time.