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American Literary Studies

Yvor Winters Papers

The Papers

Stanford has a number of special collections that contain original manuscripts, correspondence, and other archival materials related to Yvor Winters, including two notable ones in conjunction with his wife, Janet Lewis.

Finding Guides: Details are listed below with the specific collections.

Location: Department of Special Collections, Green Library

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, photographs, and microfilm 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 Yvor Winters (1900-1968):

Poet, literary critic, and editor, Winters was born in Chicago on October 17, 1900. He was married to author Janet Lewis in 1926, with whom he founded Gyroscope (1929-1931), an influential literary journal that served as center for a group led by Winters. Winters was also an editor of Hound & Horn from 1932 to 1934. A renowned poet, Winters gathered three decades' of individual volumes of verse into his Collected Poems (1952), which in its enlarged 1960 version was awarded the Bollingen Prize for Poetry. Winters was also a major and controversial literary critic, who famously attacked the Romantic strains in American literature in several books collected under the title, In Defense of Reason (1947).

Yvor Winters Papers, 1943-1968.

Size: .25 linear feet
Call Number: Univ Archives SC 119
Contents: Includes letters, memoranda and newsclippings retained in the English Department's faculty file on Winters. Items pertain to his relations with colleagues in the department, his work, and research plans.

Yvor Winters and Janet Lewis Papers, 1920-1970.

Size: 2.5 linear ft.
Call Number: Special Collections M0360
Content: Correspondence and literary manuscripts collected by Peter Howard of Serendipity Books over a period of several years. The focus is primarily on Yvor Winters and his wife Janet Lewis; however there are also materials by and about other writers who have had an association with Winters.

Yvor Winters and Janet Lewis Papers, 1906-1982.

Size: 8.5 linear ft. and 1 oversize box.
Call Number: M0352
Finding Guide: A printed version is available in the reading room of the Department of Special Collections. Electronic versions of this finding guide are also available. If you have Microsoft's Internet Explorer version 6.0 or higher, click here to connect to the XML version on the Stanford server; if not, click here for the html version on the Online Archives of California server.
Content: The papers, covering 1906-1982, are divided into three major series: Winters' papers, Lewis' papers, and related materials. Winters' papers, which are subdivided according to genre, consist of personal correspondence (primarily in-coming), professional correspondence with colleagues and publishers, articles and essays, critical texts, poetry, fiction, photographs, and miscellany. The personal correspondence files include letters conveying opinions on the work of fellow writers or letters seeking Winters' criticism of their works. The Janet Lewis Papers, also subdivided according to genre, include her personal and professional correspondence, articles, essays, lectures, novels, librettos, poems, and miscellany. The third series of the papers consists of related materials such as: works by friends and former students of Lewis and Winters, musical scores by William Bergsma and Malcolm Seagrave, interviews of Lewis, and miscellany.

Bibliography of Yvor Winters

Lohf, Kenneth A. Yvor Winters, A Bibliography (Denver: A. Swallow, 1959)
Powell, Grosvenor. Yvor Winters: An Annotated Bibliography, 1919-1982 (Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press, 1983)

Selected Biography and Criticism on Yvor Winters

Carnochan, Brigitte Hoy. The Strength of Art (Stanford: Stanford University Libraries, 1984)
Comito, Terry. In Defense of Winters (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1986)
Davis, Dick. Wisdom and Wilderness: The Achievement of Yvor Winters (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1983)
Isaacs, Elizabeth. An Introduction to the Poetry of Yvor Winters (Chicago: Swallow Press,1981)
McKean, Keith F. The Moral Measure of Literature (Denver: A. Swallow, 1961)
Parkinson, Thomas Francis. Hart Crane and Yvor Winters (Berkeley: University of California Press, c1978)
Powell, Grosvenor. Language as Being in the Poetry of Yvor Winters (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press,1980)
Sexton, Richard J. The Complex of Yvor Winters' Criticism (The Hague, Mouton, 1973)

Related Manuscript Collections at Stanford:

Burrows, Diane Axelrad. Notebooks for Courses with Yvor Winters,1947-1948. Spec Coll - University Archives SCM 012
Edmunds, John. Papers, 1947-1986. Spec Coll
Lewis, Janet (1899- ) Papers, 1964-1989. Spec Coll M0543
Lesemann, Maurice (1899-1981). Papers, 1918-1986 Spec Coll M0375
Olsen, Tillie (1912- ) Papers, 1930-1990. Spec Coll M0667
Ramsey, Henry (1900-1968). Papers, 1929-1984. Spec Coll
Stafford, Clayton. Papers, 1929-1985. Spec Coll M0434
Stanford, Donald (1913- ) Papers, 1933-1985. Spec Coll M0466

Last modified: July 5, 2006

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