Hard Gras is the most well known Dutch magazine that combines sport and literature. It seemed for a long time, an impossible combination, but Hard Gras shows there is a market for a football magazine for readers. “The first issue of Hard Gras appeared on 1 september 1994, edited by broadcaster and columnist Henk Spaan and former editor of Het Parool Matthijs van Nieuwkerk. The spread of Hard Gras is 10,000, special numbers even 15,000.

In Hard Gras is contributed by people from journalism and literature. In recent years, among other authors such as August Willemsen, Herman Koch, Ronald Giphart and Theun de Winter and journalists as Kees Jansma, Frits Barend, Hugo Borst, Edwin Stores, French Oosterwijk and Jean Nelissen contributed to the newspaper.

Blending journalism and literature

Former boss Cock Gubbels posted by LJ Veen said at the launch of the first issue: “the newspaper is a blend of journalism and literature, where the game is to keep the ball centered, we start with it because we think there are readers who want to read next Voetbal International about soccer in.. Hard Gras is well-written football stories.”

“Intellectual little fool”

Media in the Netherlands available Hard Gras generally positive. Het Parool headlines: “Journal of supporters who can write.” De Volkskrant citing a football magazine Hard Gras with literary ambitions.’ Hard Gras does not satisfy in all respects from the requirement that the fees have a clear added value compared with the daily football costs to the newspaper to realize its ambition. ” NRC Handelsblad discusses the first number in the “Literary magazines. The reviewer found the blade still must prove. She gives the example that Ronald Giphart itself pulls no punches in his story as “intellectual little fool” who stands above the crowd.
Even after the publication of the following number of Hard Gras let the media themselves heard again.Free Holland is more impressed after the publication of the fourth question. ‘ Hard Gras has produced a unique number. If a magazine Voetbal International is only interesting for those who follow football really week to week, Hard Gras writes about football and football players in a way that also for a broader, more intelligent public care is worth. ”
The new Struggles magazine writes a review after the publication of the tenth question dealing with Johan Cruijff. “Poetry is not too high. Fortunately, there are a couple of presentable poems. ” The reviewer concludes: “The sincere admiration, there is no shortage of this issue, but successful literature is to be found in much.”

“An occasional outliers”

And indeed, it is concluded that all the media. Martin Bres wrote in his book “sport is for the wily” “no successful literature, temporary blip, but a magazine which is also a general, intelligent audience” is worth. A striking result of the desk study is that no less than 55 different reviewer writes about the blade. The newspaper seems not only to meet the needs of the football-loving writer, as well as for the football loving reviewers. “When we are over a year ago by the British author Nick Hornby collaboration beam My favorite read in, we knew that in the Netherlands, the time was ripe for a literary tinted football magazine”, writes in the foreword to Nieuwkerk Spaan and the first edition. ‘ According to Martin Bres they have been vindicated. Martin Bres believes that the Netherlands was ripe for a literary football magazine that the football-loving writers and readers finally cool and unashamedly dare eat. ”

Stranger in our midst

HP de Tijd saying that the previously described the boundary between low and high culture after the release of Hard Gras has disappeared. Bres “Magazine has had a clear impact on the acceptance of football as a literary subject, and thus on the development of modern Dutch literature. Therefore, it is a bit of an odd duck in asked the Dutch newspapers. Because of the subject and the content of course, but also to their form and composition of the editors like hardly other literary magazines in the Netherlands. ”

Literary sport newspaper

Martin Bres ‘ Hard Gras literary pop art magazine après la lettre. Martin Bres have come here after reading the book Literature and modernity in the Netherlands from 1840 to 1990. The authors of this book goes into the phenomenon of “literary pop art. They define this term as follows: “the work of many authors, poets and columnists is a desirable way, quite simply, is foreign to typical literary forms are out of focus in an almost leisurely manner and can be in many cases barely distinguishable from non-or half-literary genres including journalism, advertising or entertainment, see this type of work that we call literary pop art.”. This type of writing is spread especially in the first half of the seventies. According to Rider and Smulders you can’t designate a particular literary period or type of group that is typical of pop art. “Owning the literary pop art was precisely that they got caught.”

Soccer Magazine readers

Hard Gras is subtitled “Football Magazine readers. According to Henk Spaan has deliberately chosen this title and not an sub-title as “literary”. He says in the “Sport of the wily” “it sounds too pretentious, and pretend is so great because we have so many different styles together is all” literary tinted “stories, this means you have the style well. be that a personal tone to sit in and the reader will notice that the author loves football. It must be all the real and sincere. Whether this expression must call a “literary”, I don’t know. By far, the boundary between journalism and literature is blurry. A critic from the academic school, a story in the newspaper you will find no literature.Others might.”

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