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Robert Sward Papers

Overview

Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Correspondence, Box 1-16, Folders 1-197

Poetry, Box 17-29, Folder 198-353

Fiction, Box 34-37, Folders 354-369

Drama, Non-fiction Prose, Miscellaneous Works, Box 38, Folders 370-384

Journals, Box 39-40

Manuscripts by Others, Box 41-42, Folders 393-411

Miscellany, Box 43-46, Folders 412-443

Printed Materials, Box 47



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Robert Sward Papers, 1951-1971 | MS Manuscripts

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Collection Overview

Title: Robert Sward Papers, 1951-1971Add to your cart.

Predominant Dates:1951-1971

ID: MS/MS/ms110

Primary Creator: Sward, Robert, 1933-

Extent: 47.0 Boxes

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The Robert Sward Papers are one of the largest and most diverse manuscript collections among Washington University's holdings. They include an extensive correspondence with literary figures, little magazine editors, small press publishers, family members, and friends. Thousands of pages of Sward's heavily revised worksheets and journals are also present and serve as excellent examples of the poetic process at work. A large collection of little magazines, small press publications, and literary ephemera is also housed in the Sward Papers and helps further document not only the life and career of Robert Sward, but also the American poetry scene during the 1960's and 1970's.

Collection Historical Note

Robert Sward emerged as a promising young American poet in the late 1950's. A Chicago native, Sward was educated at the University of Illinois (BA, 1956), Middlebury College, and the University of Iowa (MA, 1958). After graduating from the Iowa Writers' Program, Sward spent a year in England on a Fulbright Fellowship and upon his return joined the English Department at Cornell University.

While he was at Cornell, Sward's colleagues included the poets A.R. Ammons and William Meredith, both of whom helped promote Sward's poetry. It was Cornell University Press, in fact, that brought Sward's work to the attention of the academic community by publishing his two early collections, Kissing the Dancer and Other Poems (1964) and Thousand Year Old Fiancée and Other Poems (1965).

Sward left Cornell in the mid-1960's and spent much of the remaining decade traveling extensively in the United States and England teaching poetry workshops and giving readings. His work appeared regularly in most of the important little magazines and he developed friendships and correspondences with numerous authors of his generation, notably Carol Berge, Paul Blackburn, Robert Cohen, Larry Lieberman, Ann Quin, and Margaret Randall.

In 1969 Sward took a position as Writer-in-Residence at the University of Victoria in British Columbia. It was here that he launched Soft Press, a small press that he operated for nearly ten years which became the primary publishing outlet for his work in the 1970's. Sward eventually became a landed immigrant in Canada and lived in Toronto where he became an active member of that city's literary scene. In 1985, he returned to the United States and now lives in California. Sward reads and performs regularly as one of the "Three Roberts" (Sward, Robert Zent, and Robert Priest) and recently had a major collection of poetry published by Aya Press, Half a Life's History: Poems New and Selected, 1957-1983 (1983).

Administrative Information

Repository: MS Manuscripts

Access Restrictions: Open

Use Restrictions:

Users of the collection must read and agree to abide by the rules and procedures set forth in the Materials Use Policies.

Providing access to materials does not constitute permission to publish or otherwise authorize use. All publication not covered by fair use or other exceptions is restricted to those who have permission of the copyright holder, which may or may not be Washington University.

If you wish to publish or license Special Collections materials, please contact Special Collections to inquire about copyright status at (314) 935-5495 or spec@wumail.wustl.edu. (Publish means quotation in whole or in part in seminar or term papers, theses or dissertations, journal articles, monographs, books, digital forms, photographs, images, dramatic presentations, transcriptions, or any other form prepared for a limited or general public.)

Acquisition Source: Gift and purchase from Robert Sward

Preferred Citation: Name of the Collection, Washington University Libraries, Department of Special Collections


Box and Folder Listing


Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Correspondence, Box 1-16, Folders 1-197],
[Series 2: Poetry, Box 17-29, Folder 198-353],
[Series 3: Fiction, Box 34-37, Folders 354-369],
[Series 4: Drama, Non-fiction Prose, Miscellaneous Works, Box 38, Folders 370-384],
[Series 5: Journals, Box 39-40],
[Series 6: Manuscripts by Others, Box 41-42, Folders 393-411],
[Series 7: Miscellany, Box 43-46, Folders 412-443],
[Series 8: Printed Materials, Box 47],
[All]

Series 4: Drama, Non-fiction Prose, Miscellaneous Works, Box 38, Folders 370-384Add to your cart.
Consists of various manuscripts--plays, reviews, essays, student work, interview, reading (tape), and other manuscript material.
Sub-Series 4.1: Dramatic Works, Box 38, Folders 370-373Add to your cart.
Consists of material toward 3 plays.
Sub-Series 4.1.a: Events surrounding the supposed progress of four homosexual karate experts through the streets of Chicago towards the palace of Hugh Hefner. Box 38, Folders 370-371Add to your cart.
Consists of material toward the unpublished play including partial drafts, notes, fragments and character lists. circa 25 items, 53 pages
Sub-Series 4.1.b: DeYong, DeYong. Consists of script for student skit DeYong, DeYong (1953) from State University of Illinois at Normal, Box 38, Folders 372, 1953Add to your cart.
1 item, 5 pages
Sub-Series 4.1.c: [Untitled play], Box 38, Folders 373, circa 1968Add to your cart.
Consists of material toward an untitled play including notes, fragments and character lists. 16 items, 111 pages
Sub-Series 4.2: Non-fiction Prose, Box 38, Folders 376-382Add to your cart.
Consists of reviews and essays from 1956-1967.
Sub-Series 4.2.a: Book Reviews, Box 38, Folders 376-380Add to your cart.

Consists of drafts, notes and fragments of book reviews and informal reviews of manuscripts submitted by the authors to Sward for comment. Some correspondence relating to review assignments is included. circa 23 items, 254 pages

Review of For love, poems, 1950-1960, by Robert Creeley. [1962] Typescript [carbon], moderate revision, 3 pages. Filed in Series I.1. with letter to Sonia Raiziss, 1962: July 24

Review of The fountains of regardlessness, by Frederick Bock. [1962] Typescript [carbon], moderate revision, 3 pages. Filed in Series I.1. with letter to Sonia Raiziss, 1962: July 24

Sub-Series 4.2.b: Essays, Box 38, Folders 381-382, 1956-1965Add to your cart.
Consists of notes, fragments and drafts of titled and untitled essays, 1956-1965, most dealing with literary criticism. circa 12 items, 65 pages
Sub-Series 4.3: Miscellaneous Works, Box 38, Folders 383-384Add to your cart.
Consists of interview, letters, introductions, recommendations, Sward's college papers, tape of reading, and other manuscript materials. 34 items
Sub-Series 4.3.a: Student Assignments, Box 38, Folders 383, 1953-1957Add to your cart.
Consists of notes, outlines and papers Sward wrote while a student, 1953-1957. Some papers have professors' comments and grades. circa 20 items, 43 pages
Sub-Series 4.3.b: Miscellany, Box 38, Folders 384Add to your cart.
Consists of notes, a draft of a children's story, an audiotape of a reading at the Library of Congress and multiple drafts of letters and introductions. circa 14 items, 36 pages

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Correspondence, Box 1-16, Folders 1-197],
[Series 2: Poetry, Box 17-29, Folder 198-353],
[Series 3: Fiction, Box 34-37, Folders 354-369],
[Series 4: Drama, Non-fiction Prose, Miscellaneous Works, Box 38, Folders 370-384],
[Series 5: Journals, Box 39-40],
[Series 6: Manuscripts by Others, Box 41-42, Folders 393-411],
[Series 7: Miscellany, Box 43-46, Folders 412-443],
[Series 8: Printed Materials, Box 47],
[All]


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