John Crowe Ransom (1888-1974)

American poet and critic, leading theorist of the Southern literary renaissance that began after WWI. Ransom's The New Criticism provided the name for the influential mid-20th-century school of criticism.


Born in Pulaski, Tennessee, Ransom was educated at Varderbilt University in Nashville. From 1914 to 1937, he taught English there. At Vanderbilt, he was also the leader of the Fugitives, a group of poets who published the influential literary magazine The Fugitive (1922-1925), and shared a belief in the South and its regional traditions. He was among those Fugitives who became known as the Agrarians. Their I'll Take My Stand (1930) criticized the idea that industrialization was the answer to the needs of the South.

Ransom taught from 1937 until his retirement in 1958 at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, where he founded the literary magazine The Kenyon Review


New Criticism


The works of John Crow Ransom include: Ransom's poetry is collected in two volumes

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