Lilly Library Manuscript Collections


The Wensinger, Arthur mss., ca 1798-2007, consist of the papers of Arthur S. Wensinger, translator and academic.

Wensinger was raised in Grosse Pointe, Michigan. He graduated from Phillips Academy Andover and attended Dartmouth University, graduating in 1944. At Dartmouth he majored in biology and German. He went on to earn a Ph.D. in German literature from the University of Michigan. Upon graduation he went with the “experiment” in Putney, Vermont, to help rebuild a bombed-out student dorm in Munich, Germany. He then was awarded one of the first two James B. Reynolds scholarships from Dartmouth and studied German literature in Munich and, as a Fulbright scholar, studied German literature and linguistics at the University of Innsbruck in Austria from 1953 to 1954. He joined Wesleyan University first as an instructor and later as a full professor of German and the humanities. He was instrumental in initiating a three-year college-of-letters program covering literature, history and philosophy. He retired from Wesleyan in 1994. Wensinger has translated and edited over 20 books.

The collection is organized by the following series: I. Translations; II. Research; III. Reviews; IV. Correspondence; V. Additional Translated Works; VI. Miscellaneous Files; VII. Shabbat: A Right of Passage; VIII. Two State; One Nation; IX. In the Shadow of the Reich; X. Paula Modersohn-Becker: The Letters and Journals; XI. The Jungle Paintings.

Translations include several edited copies of the Lichtenberg manuscript, translations notes, and parts of completed translations, as well as a copy of part of The Theatre of Bauhaus. Research is compiled of untranslated German articles and English articles regarding Hogarth, Bauhaus, and Paula Modersohn-Becker, as well as a spiral bound notebook. Reviews consist of reviews of Wensinger’s translations, as well and newspaper and magazine clippings regarding published translations. Correspondence relates several translations that Wensinger worked on and is in both English and German. (Contracts are included here.) Miscellaneous Files includes some reviews and work with the American Translation Association. Additional Translated Works includes both published and non-published translations with materials related to the projects, including: The Work in Color Bibliography; Goedel's Letter; The Work in Color; The Well-Tempered Dream; Querelle; Hannah Schygulla; Liebelei/Flirtations; Methusalem; Kafka; Mary: Virgin, Mother, Sovereign; Zwischen den Zeiten; Illuminations; Schinkel; Das Politische Theater; as well as some poetry.

Series VII through XI include materials pertaining to specific works.

An inventory is available.

Acquired: 2015

Collection size: 31,500 items

For more information about this collection and any related materials contact the Public Services Department, Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405. Call (812) 855-2452 or send an email using our Ask a Question form.