Menu

Guide to the Mark Perlman Papers, 1952-2001

Collection Overview

The papers of university professor and economist Mark Perlman span the dates 1952-1994, with most of the papers being dated between 1967 and 1989. The papers consist chiefly of professional correspondence to and from Perlman, indexes to these letters and a small number of subject files, but include none of his personal papers. The collection documents Perlman's career as an economist and author at Cornell, Johns Hopkins, and the University of Pittsburgh and reflects his interest in work arbitration, trade unions, and the economics of public health. Among correspondents are many noted economists, including Moses Abramovitz, Martin Shubik, and Martin Bronfenbrenner. While many of the letters are personal in nature, others contain considerable information about Perlman's work, particularly in the years around the publication of his works Judges in Industry: A Study of Labor Arbitration in Australia(1954) and Spatial, Regional, and Population Economics: Essays in Honor of Edgar M. Hoover(1972). Additional correspondence relates to the publication of the Journal of Economic Literature.

The correspondence during Perlman's early years at Cornell includes letters in which Perlman and his friends and colleagues discuss their work, their students, and academic life. These early letters also contain travel arrangements for a trip to Australia in connection with his book Judges in Industry and information regarding Perlman's research for the book.

During Perlman's years at Johns Hopkins (1955-1964), much of the correspondence between him and his colleagues concerned Perlman's writings on work arbitration and trade unions. It was during this period that Perlman's interest was drawn to the economics of public health, and his correspondence reflects this through dialogue with other economists and statisticians as well as through inquiries regarding his research and replies from organizations providing requested information. Correspondence also includes letters concerning academic administrative matters, such as recommendations for students and fellow faculty members.

The Journal of Economic Literature correspondence consists of correspondence relating to the publication of the journal, of which Perlman was the founder and editor from 1968 through 1981. The early letters contain information about the formation of the journal. While many letters concern subscription matters, others contain discussion of particular articles, and some have manuscripts attached.

A small series of Subject Files includes correspondence with printers who worked with Perlman on the publication of his monographic works as well as on the Journal of Economic Literature; Perlman's teaching material (including course outlines, syllabi, and tests); a file on seminars established at the University of Pittsburgh to address topics of interest to the cultural life and economy of the city; correspondence with the American Economic Association in Nashville, Tennessee; and printed material and research papers submitted to a conference of which Mark Perlman was on the Program Committee. The conference, entitled "Human Resources, Employment, and Development," was held in Mexico in 1980.

Addition (acc# 1997-0208)(1500 items, 1.5 linear feet; dated 1991-1996) contains professional correspondence for 1995, an alphabetical index for all letters 1991-1996, and numerical indexes for correspondence during each year from 1991 to 1996.

Addition (acc# 1999-0188)(1200 items, 3 linear feet; dated 1996-1997) contains incoming and outgoing correspondence for 1996 and 1997, arranged in numerical order as assigned by Perlman. It also includes a chronological index for 1996-1997 correspondence, and an alphabetical index for letters dated 1991-1997.

Addition (acc# 2000-0098)(750 items, 1.5 linear feet; dated 1998) includes professional correspondence from 1998 and a printout of the numerical index for correspondence of that year. Also includes electronic numerical indexes for correspondence 1994-1999. Computer files have been migrated to the electronic records server.

Addition (acc# 2001-0071)(1000 items, 1.5 linear feet; dated 1999) is comprised of primarily personal and professional correspondence from 1999, with frequent reference to Perlman's writings and lectures and to other economists and their views. Also included on paper and as 6 electronic documents are correspondence indexes: a chronological index for 1999 and alphabetical indexes for the years 1991-1999. All indexes contain summaries of each letter's contents. The computer files have been migrated to the electronic records server. A container list was not created for this accession.

Addition (acc# 2002-0119)(750 items, 1.2 linear feet; dated 1991-2001) contains primarily personal and professional correspondence from 2000-2001. Also includes on paper and as 6 electronic documents an alphabetical index of correspondence for 1991-2001 with summaries of each letter's contents. A container list was not created for this accession.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Mark Perlman papers 1952-2002
Creator
Perlman, Mark, 1923-
Extent
62.7 Linear Feet, 38,450 Items
Repository
Duke University. David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
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

Collection is open.

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 the Mark Perlman Papers have not been transferred to Duke University. For further information, see the section on copyright in the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Contents of the Collection

Consists of letters to and from Perlman chiefly concerning personal matters, academic affairs at the universities at which he taught; research for his books and articles; negotiations with publishers; and presentations and attendence at conferences. Letters occasionally include articles submitted to Perlman by other ecomomists for publication or proofreading. The correspondence series is arranged according to Perlman's original filing systems. Note: Box 35 contains alphabetical indexes to much of the correspondence.

Correspondence from Perlman's tenure at Cornell and Johns Hopkins is arranged chronologically by year, then alphabetically by the correspondents' last names within each year. This arrangement is continued through his first year at the University of Pittsburgh's Department of Economics (1967-1968).

Cornell: A-Z, 1952-1955
(8 folders)
Box 1
Johns Hopkins: A-Z, 1955-1957
(4 folders)
Box 1
Johns Hopkins: A-O, 1957-1958
(4 folders)
Box 1
Johns Hopkins: P-Z, 1958
(1 folder)
Box 2
Johns Hopkins: A-Z, 1959-1961
(13 folders)
Box 2
Johns Hopkins: A-M, 1962
(2 folders)
Box 2
Johns Hopkins: N-Z, 1962
(1 folder)
Box 3
University of Pittsburgh Department of Economics: A-Z, 1963-1966
(14 folders)
Box 3
International Congress of Historians: A-Z, 1963-1965
Box 4
University of Pittsburgh Department of Economics: A-Z, 1967-1968
(4 folders)
Box 4

The remainder of the correspondence from the Department of Economics of the University of Pittsburgh is arranged in numeric order. Letters were given a two digit date representing the year, then numbered in sequence in order of receipt, resulting in a nearly chronological order.

68-150R - 68-750R and unnumbered, 1967 Dec.-1968 Nov.
(7 folders)
Box 5
Unnumbered, 1967 Sept.-Dec.
(2 folders)
Box 5
68-150 - 69-830 and unnumbered, 1968 Jan.-1969 Dec.
(13 folders)
Box 5
70-002 - 72-321 and unnumbered, 1970 Jan.-1972 May
(14 folders)
Box 6
72-322 - 74-279, 1972 Feb.-1974 Apr.
(16 folders)
Box 7
74-280 - 75-439, 1973 Dec.-1975 Oct.
(17 folders)
Box 8
75-440 - 76-610 and unnumbered, 1975 Oct.-1977 Jan.
(14 folders)
Box 9
77-007 - 79-064, 1976 Nov.-1979 Mar.
(18 folders)
Box 10
79-065 - 80-545, 1979 Jan.-1980 Dec.
(16 folders)
Box 11
81-001 - 82-077, 1980 Dec.-1982 Feb.
(16 folders)
Box 12
82-079 - 83-240, 1982 Jan.-1983 June
(17 folders)
Box 13
83-241 - 84-500, 1983 Feb.-1984 Mar.
(15 folders)
Box 14
84-501 - 85-224, 1983 May-1985 Apr.
(15 folders)
Box 15
85-225 - 86-511, 1985 Mar.-1986 Nov.
(17 folders)
Box 16
86-512 - 87-680, 1986 Nov.-1987 Dec.
Box 17
88-001 - 89-130, 1988 Jan.-1989 Mar.
(18 folders)
Box 18
89-132 - 90-177, 1989 Mar.-1990 Apr.
(20 folders)
Box 19
90-178 - 91-334, 1990 Apr.-1991 June
(16 folders)
Box 20
91-334 - 92-355, 1991 May-1992 June
(16 folders)
Box 21
92-356 - 93-480, 1992 June-1993 Sept.
(15 folders)
Box 22
Later Correspondence 93-481 - 94-577, 1993 Sept.-1994 Dec.
(19 folders)
Box 23

Correspondence concerning the Journal of Economic Literature is arranged at the end of the series in numeric order. Letters were given a two digit date representing the year, then numbered in sequence in order of receipt, resulting in a nearly chronological order.

Journal of Economic Literature: 68-0000 - 70-0156, 1967 July-1970 Feb.
(14 folders)
Box 24
Journal of Economic Literature: 70-0156 - 71-0480, 1970 Feb.-1971 June
(15 folders)
Box 25
Journal of Economic Literature: 71-0481 - 72-0781, 1971 June-1972 Oct.
(16 folders)
Box 26
Journal of Economic Literature: 72-0782 - 74-0033, 1972 Oct.-1974 Jan.
(17 folders)
Box 27
Journal of Economic Literature: 74-0025 - 75-0062, 1974 Jan.-1975 Jan.
(15 folders)
Box 28
Journal of Economic Literature: 75-0063 - 76-0102, 1975 Jan.-1976 Feb.
(19 folders)
Box 29
Journal of Economic Literature: 76-0103 - 76-1155, 1976 Feb.-1976 Dec.
(22 folders)
Box 30
Journal of Economic Literature: 76-1156 - 78-0170, 1976 Nov.-1978 Feb.
(22 folders)
Box 31
Journal of Economic Literature: 78-0171 - 79-0336, 1978 Feb.-1979 Apr.
(19 folders)
Box 32
Journal of Economic Literature: 79-0336 - 81-016, 1979 Mar.-1981 Mar.
(17 folders)
Box 33

Printed material and correspondence concerning publications, courses taught by Perlman, and a conference in Mexico.

Arranged alphabetically by topic.

Banta, 1970 Oct.-1974 Mar.
(1 folder)
Box 34
Cambridge University Press, 1976 June-1978 Jan.
(3 folders)
Box 34
Congress: Mexico, 1978-1980
(2 folders)
Box 34
Kingsport Correspondence, 1973 Nov.-1976 July
(2 folders)
Box 34
Nashville, 1971-1980
(5 folders)
Box 34
Old Course Material, 1972-1980
(4 folders)
Box 34
University Seminars, 1978-1979
(3 folders)
Box 34

Indexes to material in the Correspondence Series include microfiches, computer printouts, and photocopied index cards. Indexes are alphabetical by name of the correspondent, and do not include all correspondents. There is no index for 1990.

Indexes are arranged chronologically.

Indexes
Box 35
Correspondence index (microfiche), 1963-1987
(1 folder)
Box 35
Correspondence index (photocopies of index cards), 1967-1981
(7 folders)
Box 35
Correspondence index (printout), 1987-1989
(2 folders)
Box 35
Correspondence index (printout), 1991-1993
(1 folder)
Box 35
Correspondence index (printout), 1991-1994
(2 folders)
Box 35
Correspondence index (printout), 1994
(1 folder)
Box 35
Correspondence 95-001 - 95-741
(10 folders)
Box 1
Bound yearly numerical indexes, 1991-1996
(6 volumes)
Box 1
Bound alphabetical index, all correspondence 1991-1995
Box 1
Alphabetical Index, 1991-1997
(7 folders)
Box 1
Chronological Index, 1996-1997
Box 1
Correspondence (unsorted), 1996-1997
(2 folders)
Box 1
Correspondence 96-001 - 96-622
(6 notebooks)
Box 1
Correspondence 96-623 - 97-474
(5 notebooks)
Box 2
Correspondence 98-001 - 98-555
(8 notebooks)
Box 1
Printout of numerical index for 1998
Box 1

Historical Note

DateEvent(s)
1923Born in Madison, Wisconsin
1947BA and MA, University of Wisconsin
1950Ph.D., Columbia University
1951-1952Assistant Professor, University of Hawaii
1952-1955Assistant Professor, Cornell University
1953-1955Editorial Board, Industrial and Labor Relations Review
1955-1964Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Visiting Professor, Johns Hopkins University
1969-1981Founder and editor of the Journal of Economic Literature
1976-1977Visiting Fellow, Claire College, Cambridge
1981-1982Fellow, Institute of Advanced Study, Princeton University
1982Professor, Oesterreichische Laenderbank, Schumpeter University, Vienna

In his dissertation, Judges in Industry, Mark Perlman applied his interest in the development of American industrial government (and particularly in approaches to collective decision-making in industry) to the Australian Arbitration Court. This study concerned the role of employer and union organization as well as the cost and price structure of particular industries in getting the losing party to accept its awards. It was used in 1954 in the Boilermakers Case as the basis for finding the 50-year-old arbitration system unconstitutional. His next book, Labor Union Theories in America: Background and Development, and other early work dealt with the history, practices and theories of American labor unionism.

While at Johns Hopkins, Perlman became interested in the economics of public health with an emphasis on preventive health care. In 1963 he began his collaboration with Edgar M. Hoover on Spatial, Regional, and Population Economics: Essays in Honor of Edgar M. Hoover, a work concerned with demographic economics, and particularly with the lag in the profession's consciousness between the demographic empirical changes and the modification of theoretical models.

In 1969, Perlman founded the Journal of Economic Literature. He remained its managing editor for 12 years, commissioning subfield survey articles and developing a classification system for articles in economics.

Subject Headings

Provenance

The papers of Mark Perlman were donated to Duke University in several installments from 1992 to 2002.

Processing Information

Processed by: Melissa Delbridge, Lisa Stark, Joann Kleinneuir, Keary Warner

Completed June 26, 1996

Last Updated November 15, 2002

Encoded by Stephen Douglas Miller and Cat Saleeby

This finding aid is NCEAD compliant.