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From Austin to Venice Biennale: 5,614 miles of trucks, planes, and a ferry

By Jennifer Tisdale

The Harry Ransom Center supports an active program of loans from its collections, balancing the task of preparing and processing materials for loan with its own exhibition program. The loans, which share the Center’s collections with a wider audience, are considered on the basis of their merit and contribution to the humanities.

Last year, more than 135 items were loaned to 16 institutions, placing the Ransom Center’s holdings in context with other collections throughout the U.S. and internationally.

One of the Center’s most recent loans is a nearly complete set of the photographs Walker Evans made for Read more

Washington Post Editor Ben Bradlee’s Archive Donated

By Jennifer Tisdale

The archive of Ben Bradlee (1921-2014), former editor of The Washington Post, has been donated to the Ransom Center.


Bradlee presided over the Post — first as managing editor and then as executive editor — and led the paper through the publication of the Pentagon Papers and coverage of the Watergate scandal. Under his leadership, the Post earned 17 Pulitzer Prizes and a reputation for excellence in investigative reporting.

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Gabriel García Márquez symposium marks opening of author’s archive

By Jennifer Tisdale

The University of Texas at Austin’s LLILAS Benson Latin American Studies and Collections and Ransom Center will host the symposium “Gabriel García Márquez: His Life and Legacy” on October 28–30 in Austin. In advance of the symposium, the García Márquez archive will open for research in the Ransom Center’s Reading and Viewing Room on October 21.

This news is available in Spanish.

The symposium will explore the life and legacy of the beloved author and public intellectual. International scholars, journalists, filmmakers, and former colleagues of García Márquez’s will speak about his global influence in the fields of journalism, filmmaking, and literature. Panel topics include “Gabo: The Storyteller,” “Global Gabo,” “Gabo the Journalist,” and “Gabriel García Márquez: Cinematic Scribe and Muse.” Panelists hail from Colombia, Mexico, and the United States.

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Annual report helps serve as a blueprint for future growth

By Jennifer Tisdale

The Ransom Center is pleased to share its annual report covering the 2013­­­­­­­­­­­­­–2014 academic year. Ransom Center Director Steve Enniss notes that “the annual report, coupled with the Ransom Center’s recently completed strategic plan, provides a blueprint for how we hope to grow.” The data and information included in the report not only document how the Center serves students, scholars, and the public, but also provide measurable benchmarks to track future progress.

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Drama in the Archives: Undergraduate Research at the Ransom Center

By Jennifer Tisdale

After discussing his own work in the Harry Ransom Center’s archives with students in his Humanities classes, Dr. Elon Lang realized that despite his students’ interest in what he suggested could be learned from archival materials, very few had actually visited the Ransom Center and even fewer had contemplated doing research here.


Lang made it his mission to design a course that would show how the Ransom Center could serve as a valuable and approachable research tool for all interested users—especially The University of Texas at Austin’s undergraduates—and to show how much students could gain from working with archival materials.


With these goals in mind, Lang developed “Drama in the Archives,” a Humanities Honors course he taught in fall 2014.


During the semester, Lang brought students from his class to the Ransom Center at least once per week to learn about the Center and to learn how to conduct original primary research in the Center’s theater and performing arts collections.


He chose important plays as the subject matter for the class partly because of the Ransom Center’s impressive collections and partly because the consequences of creative choices that can be revealed in an archive become clear very quickly when analyzing dramatic texts.


After several weeks of guided readings and archival work, Lang had students develop their own research projects that involved close attention to an item in the Ransom Center’s collections and its historical and critical contexts.


Below, undergraduates describe the research they conducted and the discoveries they made while working with collections at the Ransom Center. They show how, with creativity and a bit of support, they were able to create a singular experience for themselves at the Ransom Center that greatly enhanced their undergraduate education.


Maureen Clark’s “Notes from the Undergrad: Student uses archival materials to explore Nietzschean nihilistic reading of Beckett’s ‘Waiting for Godot’”


Colin McLaughlin’s “Notes from the Undergrad: Archive, cultural consciousness, and a semester in the reading room”


Lily Pipkin’s “Notes from the Undergrad: Feeling Samuel Beckett’s pain and ‘Godot’ in German”


Emily Robinson’s “Notes from the Undergrad: Investigating the ending in David Mamet’s ‘Oleanna’”


Haley Williams’s “Notes from the Undergrad: An alternate ending for ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’”


Kenneth Williams’s “Notes from the Undergrad: Reviving Linda Loman in ‘Death of a Salesman’”



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Easter weekend hours

By Jennifer Tisdale

The Ransom Center will be open throughout Easter weekend, including on Friday, April 3, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m, and on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.


Visitors can view the current exhibition Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland as well as Frida Kahlo’s Self-portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird. The First Photograph and the Gutenberg Bible remain on permanent display.


Free docent-led gallery tours occur daily at noon and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. No reservations are required.


Admission is free. Your donation will support the Ransom Center’s exhibitions and public programs. Parking information and a map are available online.


Please also be aware that the Ransom Center’s Reading and Viewing Room is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, April 4.



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