Guide to the Martin Bronfenbrenner Papers, 1939-1995 and undated
Economist on the faculty at Duke University. The professional papers of Martin Bronfenbrenner span the years 1939 to 1995 and consist of correspondence, research files, memoranda, writings (published and unpublished), teaching materials, reprints, clippings, and other papers, relating chiefly to Bronfenbrenner’s research and associations in the field of economics. Topics in his research files, which make up the bulk of the collection, include income distribution theory, economic development, Marxian and radical economics (including New Left economics), labor economics, monetary economics, international economics, trade, Japanese economy and Japanese history. The collection is organized into the following series: Personal Files, Printed Material, Research and Writing Files, and Teaching Material.
- Collection Number
- Martin Bronfenbrenner papers
- 1939-1995 and undated
- Bronfenbrenner, Martin, 1914-1997
- 16.2 Linear Feet, Approximately 12,000 Items
- David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
- Material in English
The professional papers of Martin Bronfenbrenner span the years 1939 to 1995 and consist of correspondence, research files, memoranda, writings (published and unpublished), teaching materials, reprints, clippings, and other papers, relating chiefly to Bronfenbrenner’s research and associations in the field of economics. The collection is organized into the following series: Personal Files, Published Material, Research and Writing Files, and Teaching Material. The Personal Papers Series includes an unpublished autobiography, a family history, and records of Bronfenbrenner's own U.S. loyalty hearings from 1954-1955. Files in the Teaching Material Series chiefly contain syllabi, course notes, and exams dating from Bronfenbrenner's time at Carnegie, Duke, and in Japan, while the Printed Material files mainly house reprints of many of his articles. The Research Files Series, divided into topical subseries, makes up the bulk of the collection, including Bronfenbrenner's research notes, articles, reprints, correspondence, lectures, and drafts of Bronfenbrenner's writings; the materials offer a rich source of unique research material on topics of interest to Bronfenbrenner such as income distribution theory, economic development, Marxian and radical economics (including New Left economics), labor economics, monetary economics, international economics, trade, Japanese economy and Japanese history. The Research Files also contains a subseries of research folders linked to individual economists in whose work Bronfenbrenner had an interest, or with whom he corresponded, or both; names include Adelman, Baumol, Friedman, Leijonhufvud, Minsky, Samuelson, Spengler, Solow, and Viner, with two folders of material on Kei Shibata, who wrote on Marxian economics and economic equilibrium during the 1930s.
Access to the Collection
Collection is open for research.
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Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.
Use & Permissions
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.
How to Cite
[Identification of item], Martin Bronfenbrenner Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
Contains files maintained by Bronfenbrenner which include his unpublished dissertation, curriculum vitae, family correspondence, personal office files, and a family history and family tree from 1977. There are two folders dedicated to Bronfenbrenner's loyalty hearings in 1954 to 1955 when Bronfenbrenner's commitment to the United States was publicly questioned as was his interest in Marxian economics. There is one folder of short humorous poems written by Bronfenbrenner throughout his career, often using the pseudonym "The Beardless Beatnik." Bronfenbrenner's unpublished autobiography is also included in this series.
Chiefly contains offprints of journal articles and journal issues containing articles by Brofenbrenner. Additionally, there are individual copies of Bronfenbrenner's collection of short stories Tomioko Stories, recalling Bronfenbrenner's time in Japan when it was under American occupation, as well as Is the Business Cycle Obsolete?, edited by Bronfenbrenner. The contents of the boxes are arranged in date order.
Representing the main component of the Bronfenbrenner Papers, the series is subdivided into the following subseries: Development, Heterodox Topics, Income Distribution, Orthodox Topics, People, and Japan.
Folders house materials relating to one of Bronfenbrenner's ongoing interests, economic development, focused mainly on developing Asian countries or regions. The files contains notes, speeches, draft and published papers written by Bronfenbrenner, papers written by other authors relevant to Bronfenbrenner's research, relevant correspondence, newspaper articles, and other miscellaneous documents. Arranged alphabetically by original folder title.
Bronfenbrenner conducted research, wrote papers and corresponded on topics which fell outside the range of traditional economic subject areas. In particular, Bronfenbrenner had a career-long interest in the work of Marx, Marxian economics, and radical political economy. While always critical of these approaches to economics, he was a strong proponent of academic freedom and respected Marxist approaches to economic analysis. Other topics include anti-Semitism, Reagonomics, black economics, futurology, and social responsibility. The folders contain notes, speeches, draft and published papers written by Bronfenbrenner, papers written by other authors relevant to Bronfenbrenner's research, correspondence, newspaper articles, and other miscellaneous papers. Ordered alphabetically by original folder title.
Bronfenbrenner's interest and research in income distribution spanned his entire professional career. Folders contain notes, speeches, drafts and publications written by Bronfenbrenner, papers written by others, correspondence, clippings, and other miscellaneous documents. Arranged alphabetically by original folder title.
After the Second World War, Bronfenbrenner played an important consultative role in economic relations between the U.S. and Japan. His work and research on the Japanese economy during this period and in subsequent years cover almost all relevant economic issues, with emphasis on development economics, banking, and trade. The series also houses a published collection of short stories regarding his experience in Japan. Formats include research notes, speeches, writings by Bronfenbrenner, papers written by other authors relevant to his research, correspondence, newspaper articles, and other items. The folders are ordered alphabetically by original title.
Topics covered include macroeconomics, especially in U.S. monetary economics, international trade and economic growth theory. Formats include notes, speeches, drafts and other writings, papers written by other economicsts on topics relevant to Bronfenbrenner's research, correspondence relevant to the subject, clippings and articles, and other miscellaneous documents. Arranged alphabetically by original folder title.
Following Bronfenbrenner's own filing system, this research-related subseries contains folders labelled with individuals' names, most of them notable economists, in whose research Bronfenbrenner was interested or with whom he corresponded, or both. There are also two "Miscellaneous" folders. The folders contain a mix of materials: correspondence between Bronfenbrenner and the economist named on the folder, annotated and unmarked articles, and papers by Bronfenbrenner or by others. There are two folders of materials concerning Kei Shibata, who during the 1930s wrote on Marxian economics and equilibrium balance. Arranged in alphabetical order by last name.
Consists chiefly of lecture notes, examination papers, and course syllabi covering subjects that Bronfenbrenner taught through classes and seminars at Carnegie-Mellon, Duke and in Japan, including microeconomics, macroeconomics, income distribution, international economics, trade, Japanese history and the Japanese economy. Box 27 is dedicated to correspondence between Bronfenbrenner and his graduate students.
Clippings, newspapers, and other items from the Research Series, Heterodox and Japan subseries. A group of six Japanese campus newspapers contain front-page articles in the English language on 1969 student unrest and violence on Japanese campuses.
Martin Bronfenbrenner was born in Pittsburgh in 1914 and died in 1997 in Durham, North Carolina, having just been made a Distinguished Fellow of the American Economics Association. He received his Ph.D. in 1939 from the Universtiy of Chicago and after a brief stint at the U.S. Treasury, enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He served in Japan during and after the war, and had a role in the rebuilding of Japan's economy and its relations with the U.S. Taking from his experiences in Japan, Bronfenbrenner published a volume of fictional short stories entitled Tomioka Stories from the Japanese Occupation. From 1947 on, Bronfenbrenner worked exclusively as a university professor. He served on the faculty of the University of Wisconsin (1947-1957), Michigan State University (1957-1958), the University of Minnesota (1958-1962), Carnegie Mellon (1962-1971), and Duke University where he held the Kenan Chair from 1971 until 1984. In 1984, he moved to Japan as a professor of international economics at the Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo, Japan, and in 1991 he returned to Duke University where he taught until his death in 1997. Throughout this period Bronfenbrenner's interests were very wide-ranging and included income distribution theory, labor economics, Marxian and radical economics, development, Japanese economics and history, comparative economic systems, monetary theory and the history of economics. Bronfenbrenner served as vice-president of the American Economic Association (1976-1977), president of the Southern Economic Association (1979-1980), and president of the History of Economics Society (1982-1983).
Click to find related materials at Duke University Libraries.
- Adelman, Morris Albert
- Baumol, William J.
- Bronfenbrenner family
- Bronfenbrenner, Martin, 1914-1997
- Bronfenbrenner, Martin, 1914-1997
- Leijonhufvud, Axel
- Minsky, Hyman P.
- Spengler, Joseph J. (Joseph John), 1902-1991
- Samuelson, Paul A. (Paul Anthony), 1915-2009
- Solow, Robert M.
- Viner, Jacob, 1892-1970
- Chicago School of Economics
- Demand for money
- Economics -- History -- 20th century
- Economists -- Correspondence
- Economists -- United States
- Economics -- Study and teaching (Higher) -- United States
- Friedman, Milton, 1912-2006
- Income distribution
- International trade
- Inflation (Finance)
- International economic relations
- Labor economics
- Loyalty oaths -- United States
- Monetary policy
- Marxian economics
- Theory of distributions (Functional analysis)
- Unemployment -- Effect of inflation on
- China -- Economic conditions
- Japan -- History
- Japan -- Economic conditions
- United States -- Politics and government -- 1953-1961
- United States -- Foreign economic relations -- Japan
- United States -- Economic conditions
The Martin Bronfenbrenner Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift in 1984, 1993, and 1997.
Processed by Danilo Da Silva, Chris Payne, June 2010
Encoded by Danilo Da Silva, Paula Jeannet Mangiafico, and Chris Payne, June 2010
The original accession from 1984 and additions 93-175, 97-071, and 97-134 were merged into one collection, described in this finding aid.