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Texas House investigates purchase of rare books

By Harry Ransom Center

In celebration of its fiftieth anniversary, the Ransom Center has published Collecting the Imagination: The First Fifty Years of the Ransom Center, a richly illustrated chronicle of its history, which is available in the ONLINE STORE.  The following is an excerpt from Collecting the Imagination.

On April 19, 1943, the Texas House of Representatives voted 99 to 17 to order an investigation into the 1939 purchase of nine rare books by The University of Texas.  The resolution, submitted by C. S. McLellan of Eagle Lake, charged that Read more

Items From Rehearsing the American Dream: Arthur Miller’s Theater

By Harry Ransom Center

In Arthur Miller’s play All My Sons, business partners Joe Keller and Steve Deever manufactured faulty military airplane engines during World War II, causing the death of 21 pilots. Both men were tried, but Keller was acquitted. By the start of the play he has returned to the community and rebuilt his life.

The surface fiction of normality is uneasily maintained until Keller’s son Chris, engaged to Deever’s daughter and under pressure from Deever’s son, forces his father to Read more

Rehearsing the American Dream: Arthur Miller’s Theater

By Harry Ransom Center

As the first exhibition organized from Arthur Miller’s entire archive, Rehearsing the American Dream: Arthur Miller’s Theater offers new insights on the author of such plays as Death of a Salesman and The Crucible. The exhibition reveals Miller’s active engagement with his era and examines his politics, his plays, and his legacy.

Curator Charlotte Canning, professor in the Department of Theatre and Dance at The University of Texas at Austin, conducted a curator’s tour of the exhibition. Below you can listen to audio excerpts from the tour by clicking on the icon above each section. Read more

Ransom Center acquires new Graham Greene materials

By Harry Ransom Center

An unusual set of circumstances brought four separate Graham Greene collections, from disparate parts of the world, to the Ransom Center over the past several months. The first of these collections arrived from Helsinki, Finland, the home of Rolando Pieraccini, an Italian writer who published limited editions of several of Greene’s books.  The collection includes 215 letters from Greene to Pieraccini and other correspondents, dating from the 1930s to 1991, the year of Greene’s death. Read more

Recent Bernard Malamud biography draws on Ransom Center materials

By Harry Ransom Center

Oxford University Press has published a new biography of Jewish American writer Bernard Malamud. It is the first major biography of Malamud to date. The book, written by Liverpool University Professor of English Philip Davis, is titled Bernard Malamud: A Writer’s Life. The Harry Ransom Center holds a substantial part of Malamud’s archive, comprising more than 37 boxes of correspondence and papers and recently acquired additional materials from the Malamud family. (Learn more about the recent acquisition.) Read more

Insider’s Perspective: The Hip and the Square

By Harry Ransom Center

In the fall 2006 exhibition Norman Mailer Takes on America, visitors were asked to record their thoughts on three different topics that Norman Mailer had responded to over the course of his writing career. Composition notebooks and pencils were provided for visitor response, and the notebooks have become part of the Ransom Center’s archive. Read more