skip to page content | skip to main navigation
 Catalog and Search Tools  Research Help   Libraries and Collections  Services  How To ...  About SULAIR

General Information
Special Collections
Nineteenth Century
Twentieth Century to 1945
Twentieth-Century Poetry Since 1945
Twentieth-Century Fiction and Drama Since 1945
Twentieth-Century Literary Publishers
Popular/Mass Culture
Electronic Resources
British and Commonwealth Literary Studies
Contact Information

Printer-Friendly Printer-Friendly     


American Literary Studies

Irving Rosenthal Papers

The Papers

Location: Department of Special Collections, Green Library

Call Number: M1550

Size: ca. 23 linear feet

Finding Guide: A printed version is available in the reading room of the Department of Special Collections. An electronic version of the finding guide is available here.

Research Access and Use: Materials in the Department of Special Collections are non-circulating and must be used in the Special Collections' Reading Room in the Cecil H. Green Library. The Reading Room is open 10:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday. Photocopies and photographs can be made of some materials in the collections. For more information about the collections and access policies, please contact Special Collections by telephone at (650) 725-1022, by electronic mail at or by regular mail at the Department of Special Collections, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, California 94305-6004.

Career of Irving Rosenthal

Irving Rosenthal was born in San Francisco on October 9, 1930. He attended Pomona College and then the University of Chicago, where he did graduate work in human development.

In the late 1950s, Rosenthal became editor of The Chicago Review and succeeded in publishing poetry by Jack Kerouac, prose by Edward Dahlberg, and the first parts of William Burroughs's Naked Lunch before the University of Chicago censored his editorial practice. After resigning from The Chicago Review, he moved to New York and started Big Table magazine with the help of a colleague. Its first issue included the entire contents of the suppressed 1959 winter edition of The Chicago Review. Although Big Table survived only briefly, its few issues strengthened Rosenthal’s connection to both the Dahlberg circle and the Beats.

Living in New York, Rosenthal developed particularly close relationships with Allen Ginsberg, Hubert Huncke, and other figures in the Beat movement. He subsequently visited Burroughs and Paul Bowles in Tangier and lived there from 1962 to1964. During this period he also began work on a novel, Sheeper, which was later published by Grove Press in 1967. Returning to New York, Rosenthal was drawn into the orbit of the experimental film maker, Jack Smith, and appeared in Flaming Creatures and No President.

In 1967 Rosenthal moved back to San Francisco with George Harris, founder of the Cockettes, to start the Kaliflower commune, which continues to exist and where he still lives.

Related Manuscript Collections at Stanford

Gregory Corso Papers

Edward Dahlberg Papers

Allen Ginsberg Papers



Last modified: May 19, 2009

© Stanford University. Stanford, CA 94305. (650) 723-2300. Terms of Use | Copyright Complaints
[an error occurred while processing this directive]