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   Joanne Grant Research Files, 1963-1968.

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Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Joanne Grant Research Files, Box and Folder; University Archives, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.

COinS Metadata available (e.g., for Zotero).

Summary Information


This collection consists of the working materials Joanne Grant, a journalist and activist, collected for the research and publication of her 1969 book Confrontation on Campus: Columbia Pattern for the New Protest (New York: New American Library, 1969).

At a Glance

Call No.:UA#0141
Bib ID:6892009 View CLIO record
Creator(s):Grant, Joanne
Title:Joanne Grant Research Files, 1963-1968.
Physical description:1.44 linear feet (3 document boxes).
Language(s):In English
Access: This collection is located offsite. This collection has no restrictions. Some personal material may be restricted due to the presence of personal names and information.  More information »



This collection is arranged in three series.

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Scope and Content

This collection is a repository of Joanne Grant's research materials for her 1969 book Confrontation on Campus: The Columbia Pattern for the New Protest. The collection contains both Grant's notes taken throughout the Columbia revolt, as well as collected research materials. These materials consist of Strike Coordinating Committee fliers, agendas, leaflets and official statements. In addition, the collection includes the responses of faculty, administration and community members to the strike. The collection also contains materials from the Independent Committee on Vietnam at Columbia University, student protest files against Columbia's involvement in the war. The materials consist of fliers, letters, telegrams and pictures.

Series I: Columbia University Student Uprisings, 1963-1968

This series contains materials that document the issues leading up to the uprising and provides a chronology of student, faculty, community and administrative involvement in the 1968 strike. The folders within each subseries are arranged alphabetically.

Subseries I.1. Pre-uprising, 1963-1968

This subseries provides early documentation of anti-Vietnam War sentiment on Columbia University’s campus including the official documentation of the Independent Committee on Vietnam as well as student responses to Columbia’s class ranking and draft policies. Finally there are five spiral bound notebooks of handwritten notes taken before and during the student strikes.

Subseries I.2. Uprising, 1966-1968

contains a compilation of fliers, SCC memoranda, meeting minutes, and statements, press releases, correspondence, and public statements documenting the student uprisings. A full chronology is followed by the materials of various student groups: the Strike Coordinating Committee, black students and students from Barnard College. Many of the student newsletters are addressed to Morris Grossner, a Columbia University student at the time and a leader in Columbia’s chapter of the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). These materials are followed by letters of support and various other responses of those involved in the strike, as well as plans for the restructuring of the University. Also included are submissions, addressing racism, black students and the labor movement, by Columbia University students to the magazine China Features in Peking.

Series II: Materials Collected from Laura Foner, 1968

This series contains research materials collected from Laura Foner, a Columbia University graduate student and member of SNCC. The papers that were contributed by Foner are marked in the top right hand corner of each page with her initials: LF.

Series III: Photographs, 1968

Photographs used by Grant in her 1969 book on Columbia University student uprisings Confrontation on Campus . Most of the images are annotated on the back.

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Using the Collection


Access Restrictions

 This collection is located offsite.

This collection has no restrictions. Some personal material may be restricted due to the presence of personal names and information.

Restrictions on Use

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. Permission to publish material from the collection must be requested from the Curator of Manuscripts and University Archivist, Rare Book and Manuscript Library (RBML). The RBML approves permission to publish that which it physically owns; the responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Joanne Grant Research Files, Box and Folder; University Archives, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.

Finding aid in repository; folder level control.

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About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries. Rare Book and Manuscript Library; machine readable finding aid created by Columbia University Libraries Digital Library Program Division

Processing Information

Collection, processed by Megan French GSAS, 2013.

Finding aid wittten by Megan French, June, 2008.

Machine readable finding aid generated from MARC-AMC source via XSLT conversion March 5, 2009 Finding aid written in English.
    2009-03-05 File created.
    2009-04-16 xml document instance created by Carrie Hintz

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Subject Headings

The subject headings listed below are found in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a catalog that allows users to search the holdings of multiple research libraries and archives.

All links open new windows.


HeadingCUL Archives:
CUL Collections:
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
Press Releases.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID


HeadingCUL Archives:
CUL Collections:
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
Black Panther Party.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Civil rights movements.--United States--History--20th century.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
College students--New York (State)--New York--Political activity.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia Spectator.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia University Student Coordinating Committee.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia University--Administration.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia University--History.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia University.--Alumni and alumnae--Societies,etc.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia University.--Student Strike, 1968.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia University.--Students' Afro-American Society.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia University.--Students--Political activity.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia University.--Students.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Columbia-Barnard Citizenship Council.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Committee for the Defense of Property Rights.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Community Action Committee.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
December Fourth Movement.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Draft resisters--Vietnamese Conflict, 1961-1975.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Employees for March 25th.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Faculty Peace Action Committee.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Grant, Joanne.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Kirk, Grayson L. (Grayson Louis), 1903-PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Morningside Housing Committee.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Peace movements.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Progressive Labor Party.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Radical Faculty Group.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Rudd, Mark.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Social movements.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Student Mobilization Committee (U.S.).PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Student Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam a.k.a. SMC.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Student Movements--New York (State)--New York.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Student-Administrators relationships.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Students for a Democratic Society (U.S.).PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Students for a Free Campus.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Students for a Reconstructed University a.k.a. SRU.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Vietnamese Conflict, 1961-1975.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID

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History / Biographical Note

Biographical Note

Joanne Grant, born in 1930 in Ithaca, New York to a biracial mother and white father, graduated from Syracuse University with a degree in history and journalism. At 27, Grant traveled throughout the Soviet Union and China, defying state bans on travel to Communist countries, seeking alternatives to an American political system that perpetuated segregation and class divides. Grant was deeply interested in finding organizing and mobilizing tools through which to address the racial and economic inequities of American democracy. Upon her return, the young journalist briefly assisted W.E.B. DuBois, noted black scholar, intellectual, and activist. DuBois, who had left the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), an organization he had founded, as the leadership became more mainstream, sought increasingly more radical alliances for his activism. Undoubtedly, DuBois' mounting frustrations with the unfulfilled promises of equality through integration and his profound interest in creating international Communist alliances, influenced Grant.

With DuBois' referral, Grant took a position as a journalist at the Leftist New York weekly The National Guardian in 1960 and traveled throughout the South to detail Civil Rights struggles for the paper, writing on Freedom Summer, the Citizenship School movement, marches and voter registration drives. Her reporting connected to her to the folks of the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), a militant student organization that used direct action to protest segregation, and to SNCC's founder, Ella Baker. Baker, who had gotten her start as an activist in the NAACP some twenty-five years before, had persuaded Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to hold a college conference in 1960, on the heels of sporadic youth action to desegregate college campuses. The symposium birthed SNCC, and Baker left the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) to become the young organization's advisor. Impressed by the expansive direct action program SNCC was implementing, Grant joined the organization, both as a journalist and activist. Her journalism for The Guardian provided a platform for SNCC to publicize their work and the repressive responses of politicians, law enforcement and white citizens.

She married Victor Rabinowitz in 1967, a New York lawyer and activist who defended many Leftist organizations throughout the various freedom struggles of the 1960s including leaders of the Weather Underground, SNCC, and high-profile communists. Grant's experiences with SNCC and the Black freedom movement informed her comprehensive document- based history of the black struggle against oppression entitled Black Protest: 350 Years of History, Documents, and Analyses (New York: Fawcett, 1968). Her involvement with SNCC also led her to cover and participate in the student uprisings at Columbia University in 1968. The result was her history and analysis of the strike in Confrontation on Campus: The Columbia Pattern for the New Protest . Evident in her writings is Ms. Grant's overwhelming desire to find new means through which to fight oppression and inequality within the American democratic system.

Grant and Rabinowitz traveled extensively, including a trip to Cuba where Grant charmed Castro into allowing them to accompany the Cuban president on a leg of a speaking tour throughout the country. Her later work, a film entitled Fundi (1981) and later book, Ella Baker: Freedom Bound (New York: Wiley, 1998), were both dedicated to exploring the life and grassroots activism of SNCC founder Ella Baker.

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