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Programs & Services: Publications: Collection Guides: Galway Kinnell Papers


Lilly Library
Indiana University
Bloomington, Indiana

The Kinnell mss., 1936-1980, consist of the correspondence, writings and other papers of poet and professor Galway Kinnell, 1927-__. Kinnell was born in Providence, Rhode Island, received his BA from Princeton University and his MA from the University of Rochester in New York. His teaching career began at Alfred University in New York where he taught English. Since then he has held professorships at universities literally throughout the world, from Columbia University to the University of Grenoble in France and from the University of Iran, Teheran to the University of Hawaii in Honolulu. He has been a visiting professor or poet at such distinguished universities and colleges as Sarah Lawrence, Queens College of CUNY, Brandeis University, Skidmore College, and the University of California, Irvine. He was visiting writer at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia and resident writer at Deya Institute, Mallorca, Spain. In addition to his teaching duties, Kinnell has traveled extensively giving poetry readings and lecturing.

Kinnell's poetry began appearing in poetry magazines and anthol ogies in 1953. In 1960 his first book of poetry, What a King dom It Was, was published and by 1980 ten volumes of his poetry had appeared. Although most prolific as a poet, Kinnell's other published works include: a novel, Black Light; a children's book, How the Alligator Missed Breakfast; illustrations for a book of poetry by Pati Hill; and translations of such writers as Yvan Goll, Rene, Hardy, and Franc,ois Villon.

The quality of his work over the years has brought to Kinnell many awards and prizes, such as the Ingram Merrill Foundation award, an Amy Lowell traveling fellowship, the London Translation Prize, and the Shelley Prize from the Poetry Society of America. Not least among these is the 1983 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for his Selected Poems. Various drafts of the poems found in this volume are present in the collection.

Through the exchange of writings, advice and criticism were sought among peers, and this creative relationship with his colleagues is reflected in the letters. For most part, however, the correspondence concerns Kinnell's teaching and poetry read ings. Correspondents include: Ai, Charles Greenleaf Bell, Stephen Berg, Nell Walden Blaine, Robert Bly, Yves Bonnefoy, Daniel Joseph Boorstin, Henry Braun, David G. Brooks, Gwendolyn Brooks, Paul Carroll, Hayden Carruth, Jane Cooper, Nicholas Crome, Anne (Buchanan) Crosby, Jacques de Spoelberch, Babette Deutsch, William DeVoti, James Dickey, Stephen Dunning, Richard Eberhart, William Oliver Everson, Charles Munro Fishman, Kimon Friar, Robert Frost, Jonathan Galassi, Isabella Stewart Gardner, Allen Ginsberg, Robert Haskell Glauber, Claire Goll, Yvonne Hagen, Donald Hall, Oakley Maxwell Hall, Pauline Hanson, Pati Hill, Bert Gerald Hornback, Ted Hughes, Rolfe Humphries, David Ignatow, Erica Jong, Carolyn Kizer, Etheridge Knight, Elizabeth Kray, Stanley Jasspon Kunitz, David Kuhn, James Laughlin, Denise Levertov, Philip Levine, John Logan, William Stanley Merwin, Robert Mezey, Frederick Morgan, Howard Moss, Howard Nemerov, Joyce Carol Oates, Geraldine Page, Allen Planz, Arabel J. Porter, Alfred A. Poulin, Henry Rago, David Ray, Adrienne Cecile Rich, Macha Louis Rosenthal, Ned Rorem, Buffy Sainte Marie, Jacqueline Saunier-Ollier, Karl Jay Shapiro, William De Witt Snodgrass, Lester Alan Standiford, George Starbuck, Marion Kingston Stocking, Mark Strand, Travis L. Summersgill, John Tagliabue, Virginia Wade, David Wagoner, Chad Walsh, Galen Williams, Jonathan Chamberlain Williams, William Carlos Williams, James Arlington Wright, and Paul Zweig.

The collection includes countless drafts and worksheets of Kinnell's writings as well as page proofs, galleys, book produc tion material and printed reviews of his published works. There is also a large section of writings by other poets and authors.

Present also are writings from Kinnell's childhood years, as well as class notes, papers, and lecture material covering his academic career.

The collection concludes with a miscellaneous section which contains among other items, material concerning his activities with both the civil rights movement and anti-war protests of the 1960's and early 1970's.

  • Purchase. Galway Kinnell. Sheffield, Vermont. 1980
  • ca. 16,500 items


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Last updated: 10 September 2012

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