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Guide to the Sacvan Bercovitch papers, 1940-2011

Collection Overview

Collection contains research notes, manuscripts on paper and floppy diskettes, and correspondence relating to the serial Cambridge History of American Literature, of which Bercovitch is general editor. Research notes chiefly relate to Bercovitch's work on colonial American literature and religion, particularly on the Puritans in New England, and American humor. Also includes drafts with corrections of A Cultural Model of Literary Studies, and Literary Context, both by Bercovitch. Another set of files consists of writings by others, curriculum vitae, and more correspondence pertaining to the Cambridge serial. Some correspondence and articles date from the 1940s and 1950s and were written by Bryna Bercovitch in Yiddish; English translations included. There are also some research materials and correspondence concerning Yiddish literature. Part of the Jay B. Hubbell Center for Literary Historiography.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Sacvan Bercovitch papers 1940-2011
Creator
Bercovitch, Sacvan
Extent
36.0 Linear Feet, Approx. 26,000 Items
Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
Location
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
Language
English

Administrative Information

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Access is restricted.

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

All or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.

Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.

warning Use Restrictions

The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Contents of the Collection

Research notes, manuscripts on paper and floppy diskettes, and some correspondence relating to the serial Cambridge History of American Literature, of which Bercovitch is general editor. Research notes chiefly relate to Bercovitch's work on colonial American literature and religion, particularly on the Puritans in New England, and American humor. Also includes drafts with corrections of A Cultural Model of Literary Studies, and Literary Context, both by Bercovitch. Another set of files consists of writings by others, curriculum vitae, and more correspondence pertaining to the Cambridge serial. Some correspondence and articles date from the 1940s and 1950s and were written by Bryna Bercovitch in Yiddish; English translations included. Some later correspondence is comprised of email printed out. There is also material documenting his work as an English professor at Harvard, such as student correspondence and papers, and material regarding Yiddish literature.

Correspondence (professional), 1969, Dec.-1986, Dec.
Box 1
Correspondence (professional), 1987, Feb.-1991, Nov.
Box 1
Correspondence (professional), 1992, Mar.-1994, June
Box 1
Correspondence (professional), 1994, Aug.
Box 1
Correspondence, 1997
Box 1
Writings with some Correspondence (professional): Deadpan Trickster
Box 1
Writings with some correspondence (professional)
Box 1
Correspondence (professional), 1995, Nov.-1998, Nov.
Box 2
Correspondence (professional), 1999, Jan.-1999, Mar.
Box 2
Correspondence (professional), 1999, Apr.-1999, May
Box 2
Correspondence (professional), 1999, June-1999, July
Box 2
Correspondence (personal and professional), 1984, Nov.-1999, Mar.
Box 2
Correspondence (personal and professional), 1999, Apr.-1999, May
Box 2
Miscellaneous
Box 2
Bryna Bercovitch: Writings, 1940s
Box 3
Bryna Bercovitch: Writings, 1940s-1950s, including photocopies of original drafts
(4 folders)
Box 3
Drafts (SB): Fragments, A Literary Approach to Cultural Studies
Box 3
Drafts (SB): Fragments, End-Game Gambit: A Model of Literary and Cultural Studies
Box 3
Drafts (SB): Fragments, A Cultural Model of Literary Studies>
Box 3
Drafts: Fragment, [End-Game Gambit?], undated
Box 3
Drafts: A Cultural Model of Literary Studies, 1994 and undated
(5 folders)
Box 4
Nathan Weinstein: Biographical information
Box 4
Culture in a Faulknerian Context
Box 4
The Claims of Rhetoric: Miscellaneous publisher information and outline
Box 4
Drafts: fragment, A Limitless Field: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Literature (keynote address for literary symposium, Texas Christian Univ., 1994; version of "A Cultural Model of Literary Studies"
Box 5
Drafts: fragment, A Cultural Model of Literary Studies, undated
(7 folders)
Box 5
Handwritten notes
Box 5
Bryna Bercovitch: Drafts (photocopies of translations), 1946-1950
(2 folders)
Box 5
Bryna Bercovitch: Rokhel (essay), 1946
Box 6
Library of America Volume on Nathanael West
(3 folders)
Box 6
Drafts (Printed from diskettes 1-9), 1993-1994 and undated

Includes The Winthrop Variation, Games of Chess: A Model of Cultural Studies, and other variations of the same works, with differing titles.

(10 folders)
Box 7
Drafts (Printed from diskettes 10-17), 1993-1994 and undated

Includes The Winthrop Variation, and other variants of the same work.

(7 folders)
Box 8
Student papers for literature classes
Box 8
Spanish language exam sample
Box 8
Gifts of Faith in the Atonement of Christ - graduate student essay [SB?]
Box 8
Diskettes 1-17 (3.5 floppies)
Box 8
Notecards, citations from literary works by Melville, Douglass, Dewey
Box 8

Addition (1999-0261) contains primarily e-mail correspondence with colleagues and students, and drafts of writings, including Deadpan Trickster: The American Humor of Huckleberry Finn. Additional items include clippings, printed materials, and an award.

Drafts of Deadpan Trickster: The American Humor of Huckleberry Finn filed with professional correspondence including e-mail
Box 1
1969 Dec. - 1994 Aug.
Box 1
1995 Nov. - 1999 July
Box 2
1984 Nov. - 1999 May
Box 2
Printed items and student evaluations
Box 2
Clippings
Oversize Folder 1
Printed Materials
Oversize Folder 1
Award from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
Oversize Folder 1

Addition (01-091) (1700 items, dated 1995-2001) contains primarily e-mail correspondence with colleagues and students. Also includes teaching materials, a 1996 lecture on John Winthrop, and translations of writings (1943-1950) in Yiddish by Bryna Bercovitch.

Addition (01-211) (1500 items, 1.2 linear feet; dated 1991-2001 and n.d.) consists primarily of email correspondence with colleagues and students (1995-2001). Also includes drafts of writings sent to Bercovitch (1991-1999 and n.d.) and materials relating to a public television series concerning American literature.

Addition (02-097) (375 items, .6 linear feet; dated 2001-2002) consists of professional and personal correspondence, primarily printed email.

Addition (02-255) (1200 items, 1.2 lin. ft.; dated 2001-2002) contains primarily email correspondence with colleagues, friends, and former students. Also includes publication drafts (undated) by Bercovitch, particularly proofs of "Deadpan Huck," which was published in the Kenyon Review, and information about Bercovitch's retirement at the end of 2001.

Addition (03-276) (2175 items, 3.4 lin. ft.; dated 2001-2003) consists primarily of printouts of email correspondence with colleagues, friends, and former students.

Addition (04-093) (1500 items, 2.4 lin. ft.; dated 2003-2004) contains primarily printouts of email correspondence with colleagues and friends regarding American literature, Yiddish literature, and other topics.

Addition (05-074) (4276 items, 7.2 lin. ft.; dated 1983-2005) comprises primarily personal and professional email correspondence (2001-2005); research notes; other correspondence; and teaching materials from courses taught in the 1980s.

Addition (06-057) (1,875 items, 3.0 lin. ft.; dated 2000-2006) consists primarily of printouts of email correspondence with colleagues, friends, and former students.

Additions (08-103 and 09-145) (7200 items; 9.6 lin. ft.; dated 1973-2009) includes printouts of email correspondence (both professional, personal, and class-related); research/lecture notecards on various books and authors; course packets with articles and readings on Puritans, Jewish-American literature, and general American literature; reviews of some of Bercovitch's books; materials from the publication of The Art of Sylvia Ary; and miscellaneous teaching materials and articles.

Although this addition has not been processed, materials have been arranged into loose series: Correspondence, Book Reviews, Materials from The Art of Sylvia Ary, Teaching Materials, and Research/Lecture Notes. Correspondence consists almost entirely of email printouts, and various folders have been marked as "professional" or "personal" when assigned as such by Bercovitch. The addition originally contained seven CDs and one floppy disk from The Art of Sylvia Ary; these materials have been copied to the library server, and the disks have been transferred to the custody of the Electronic Records Archivist.

Email correspondence, 2006 (9 folders)
Box 1
Email correspondence, 2006-2007 (8 folders)
Box 2
Email correspondence, 2007 (8 folders)
Box 3
Email correspondence, 2007 (7 folders)
Box 4
Email correspondence, 2007-2008 (8 folders)
Box 5
Email correspondence, 2006-2008 (10 folders)
Box 6
Email correspondence, February 2008-August 2008 (9 folders)
Box 7
Email correspondence, September 2008-February 2009 (10 folders)
Box 8
Email correspondence, February 2009-May 2009 (7 folders)
Box 9
Correspondence and drafts of correspondence, 1994-2001
Box 9
Miscellaneous correspondence, 2000-2008
Box 9
Professional email correspondence, 2004
Box 9
Curriculum Vitae
Box 9
Financial
Box 9
Seminar email correspondence, Spring 2009 (3 folders)
Box 10
Class email correspondence, September 2008-January 2009 (7 folders)
Box 10
Puritan Origins of the American Self (1975), 1975-1976
Box 11
Reconstructing American Literary History (1986), 1986-1988
Box 11
Ideology and Classic American Literature (1986), 1986-1987
Box 11
Typology and Early American Literature (1972), 1973-1986
Box 11
American Puritan Imagination (1974), 1974-1976
Box 11
Cambridge History of American Literature (1994), 1995-1998
Box 11
The American Jeremiad (1978), 1978-1989
Box 11
The Rites of Assent (1992), 1993-1995
Box 11
The Office of the Scarlett Letter (1991), 1992-1998
Box 11
Datebook, 2006
Box 11
7 compact discs, 1 floppy disk
Box 11
Drafts and correspondence (3 folders)
Box 11
Email correspondence, 2008 (5 folders)
Box 12
Correspondence and notes
Box 12
Final copy
Box 12
English text (2 folders)
Box 12
Illustrations
Box 12
French text
Box 12
Cover
Box 12
Proofs and drafts
Box 12
Street scenes
Box 13
Still lifes: not used
Box 13
The Actors, 1980: not used
Box 13
Kubla Khan silkscreen: not used
Box 13
Portraits: not used
Box 13
Various photographs and transparencies
Box 13
Artwork and figures
Box 13
Extra transparencies and photographs
Box 13
Publishers
Box 13
Book final
Box 13
English draft (3 folders)
Box 13
French text
Box 13
Book proofs with edits (3 folders)
Box 13
Supplement to American Literary History
Box 13
Emerson binder (2 folders)
Box 13
Sourcebook binder (1 of 2 folders)
Box 13
Sourcebook binder (2 of 2 folders)
Box 14
The Myth of America, 1993
Box 14
New England Puritanism, 1993
Box 14
Hawthorne and Literary History sourcebooks
Box 14
American Identities, 1997
Box 14
Three Modern Jewish Writers coursepack
Box 14
General teaching materials (2 folders)
Box 14
Puritanism in America, 1999
Box 15
Articles (2 folders)
Box 15
American Revolution
Box 15
Bellamy
Box 15
Douglass
Box 15
Emerson
Box 15
Emerson and miscellaneous
Box 15
Emerson and Self-Reliance
Box 15
Huck Finn
Box 15
Kerovac
Box 15
King (2 folders)
Box 15
Mailer (2 folders)
Box 15
Scarlett Letter (2 folders)
Box 15
Steinbeck (2 folders)
Box 15
Twain
Box 15
Professional papers (2 folders)
Box 16
American Literature to 1860 coursebooks, 2000 (2 versions)
Box 16
Sourcebooks (2 versions)
Box 16
English 17, 1999
Box 16
Syllabus materials
Box 16
Isaac Babel biography
Box 16

Correspondence, lectures, and lecture notes about various English literature authors.

Personal correspondence, 2008 (4 folders)
Box 1
Faulkner
Box 1
Absalom
Box 1
Fitzgerald
Box 1
Morrison
Box 1
J.D. Salinger
Box 1
The Scarlet Letter
Box 1
Edgar Allen Poe
Box 1
The Great Gatsby
Box 2
Hemingway
Box 2
Robinson Housekeeping
Box 2
West: Miss Lonelyhearts and The Day of the Locust
Box 2
Puritanism notes
Box 2
Lectures, 1995-2001
Box 2
Edwards notes
Box 2
Seminar 2009 emails (3 folders)
Box 2
Seminar 2009 emails (6 folders)
Box 3

Series consists of three subseries. The Books Subseries includes fourteen published works with Bercovitch's notations in the margins. Correspondence Subseries consists of one folder with letters ranging from 2002 to 2010. The bulk of the letter are from past students. The Printed Material Subseries holds two articles; one from 1967 entitled "Teenager's resentment dissolves in foster home" and an article published in the New York Times on March 28, 2010 titled "Mad As Hell. And..."

Subseries consists of 14 books with Bercovitch's annotations.

Box 1
Bellamy, Edward. Looking Backward: 2000-1887. New York: Hendricks House, Inc.
Box 1
Blau, Joseph L., ed. Social Theories of Jacksonian Democracy. Indianapolis: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, Inc., 1975.
Box 1
Clemens, Samuel Langhorne. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. San Francisco: Chandler Publishing Company, 1962.
Box 1
Clemens, Samuel Langhorne. A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. San Francisco: Chandler Publishing Company, 1963.
Box 1
Douglass, Frederick. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, Written by Himself. New York: Signet, 1968.
Box 1
Emerson, Ralph Waldo. Selections from Ralph Waldo Emerson. Edited by Stephen E. Whicher. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1957.
Box 1
Greene, Jack P., ed. The Reinterpretation of the American Revolution: 1763-1789. New York: Harper & Row, 1968.
Box 1
Hamilton, Alexander, James Madison, John Jay. The Federalist Papers. New York: Mentor, 1961.
Box 1
Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Scarlet Letter. New York: Penguin Books, 1970.
Box 1
Box 2
Hemingway, Ernest. A Farewell to Arms. New York: Scribner Books.
Box 2
Melville, Herman. Great Short Works of Herman Melville. Edited by Warner Berthoff. New York: Harper & Row, 1969.
Box 2
Melville, Herman. White Jacket or The World in a Man of War. New York: Signet Classic, 1979.
Box 2
Poe, Edgar Allan. Selected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe. Edited by Edward H. Davidson. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1956.
Box 2
Steinbeck, John. The Grapes of Wrath. New York: Penguin Books, 1976.
Box 2
Correspondence, 2002-2010 and undated
Box 2
Newspaper clippings, 1967 and 2010
Box 2

Series includes class and lecture notes on a wide range of American authors and novels, as well as a small amount of material related to Bercovitch's writings, including "Game of Chess" and American Jeremiad. The lecture notes have been arranged alphabetically using Bercovitch's original naming scheme.

Bellamy
Box 1
Cather
Box 1
Confidence-Man
Box 1
Declaration of Independence
Box 1
Easy Rider
Box 1
Emerson
Box 1
Enlightenment/Myth
Box 1
Farewell to Arms
Box 1
Hawthorne
Box 1
Hawthorne/Melville
Box 1
House of Seven Gables
Box 1
Huck Finn
Box 1
Henry James
Box 1
Mailer
Box 1
Marble Farm
Box 1
Melville/Emerson
Box 1
Melville, general
Box 1
Melville, Typee
Box 1
Myth
(3 folders)
Box 1
Pierre, American Myth
Box 1
Pierre, extra
Box 1
Prairie - James Fenimore Cooper
Box 1
Redburn
Box 1
Robinson
Box 1
Salinger
Box 1
Short stories
Box 1
Steinbeck
Box 1
Stowe
Box 1
The Spy
Box 1
Thoreau
Box 1
Thoreau - Puritans
Box 1
White Jacket
Box 1
Unidentified notes
Box 1
Game of Chess correspondence, 1995-1999
Box 1
Game of Chess notes and research
(2 folders)
Box 1
The American Jeremiad preface and notes, 2011
(2 folders)
Box 1

[Electronic records have been migrated to a library server. To request access, please contact a reference archivist before coming to use this collection.]

Correspondence for new edition of Puritan Origins of the American Self, 2010-2011
(2 folders, 268 files, 16.9 MB)
Electronic Folder E-folder
Preface to new edition of The American Jeremiad, 2012
(22 folders, 294 files, 86.5 MB)
Electronic Folder E-folder
American Jeremiad articles
(2 folders, 80 files, 21.5 MB)
Electronic Folder E-folder
Courses taught, 1998-2006: American Dissent, College, Extensions
(5 folders, 25 files, 21.2 MB)
Electronic Folder E-folder

Historical Note

Sacvan Bercovitch is a literary scholar and professor of English and American Literature and Language, Harvard University.

Subject Headings

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Sacvan Bercovitch Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Provenance

The collection was given as a gift by Sacvan Bercovitch from 1993-2011.

Processing Information

Processed by Paula Jeannet and T. Walker Robinson.

Completed August 26, 1997.

Encoded by Lisa Stark.

This finding aid is NCEAD compliant.

Finding aid updated by Meghan Lyon, 2009-2012, to include subsequent additions.

Subject headings updated and addition 1999-0261 encoded by Paula Jeannet Mangiafico, 2013.

Accession(s) described in this finding aid: 1993-0237, 1999-0261, 2001-0091, 2001-0211, 2002-0097, 2002-0255, 2003-0276, 2004-0093, 2005-0074, 2006-0057, 2008-0103, 2009-0145, 2010-0036, 2011-0082, 2011-1008.