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   Mirra Ginsburg Papers, 1910-1999

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Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Mirra Ginsburg Papers; Box and Folder; Bakhmeteff Archive, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.

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

Summary Information

At a Glance

Call No.:BA#0134
Bib ID:7447714 View CLIO record
Creator(s):Ginsburg, Mirra.
Title:Mirra Ginsburg Papers, 1910-1999
Physical description:20 linear ft. (38 document boxes).
Language(s):English and Russian.
Access: This collection is located on-site. This collection has no restrictions.  More information »



This collection is arranged into 11 series:

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Scope and Content

Collection consists of correspondence, writings, research notes, notebooks, printed material, books, photographs and one audiotape

Series I: Cataloged Correspondence

Series contains Mirra Ginsburg's original correspondence with prominent literary figures, primarily in Russian, with some English correspondence (most notably with I.B. Singer). Manuscript drafts included. Photocopies or typed copies of the same document are enclosed, but not cataloged separately. Documents are filed alphabetically by correspondent, then chronologically, with interleaved incoming and outgoing correspondence.

Series II: Arranged Correspondence

Russian and English.

Subseries II.1: Prominent Individuals

Incoming and outgoing high-volume (over 5 items) correspondence with friends, family, and colleagues. Photos separated, paper enclosures kept on file. Folders arranged alphabetically by personal name, correspondence within folder arranged chronologically.

Subseries II.2: Organizations

Correspondence with publishers, professional and funding organizations, includes enclosures, such as book contracts, royalty statemtents, book reviews, publishers booklets and catalogs, notes and letter drafts by MG, proofs and illustrations. Folders arranged alphabetically by company name, correspondence within folder - in chronological order.

Subseries II.3: Subject Files

Arranged Chronologically

Subseries II.4: Other

Arranged alphabetically by author (personal or corporate)

Series IV: Background materials

Research material used by MG in her works, such as original texts of translated authors, and writings about these authors. Series also include adaptations and reviews of translations by MG (additional reviews, sent by publishers, can be found in Arranged Correspondence series).

Subseries IV.1: Singer Book projectBulgakov

Includes all materials relating to Bulgakov, exept translations and essays by MG (see Writings)

Subseries IV.2: Russian Writers

Original texts, research/biographic materials and reviews of Russian authors, translated by MG (except Bulgakov - see Bulgakov subseries). Arranged alphabetically by writer.

Subseries IV.3: Subject Files

Contains materials on history, folklore, space exploration, Russia/Soviet Union, poetry, children's literature, publishing etc.

Series V: Biographic Material

Personal documents relating to MG and her family

Series VI: PEN

Materials relating to MG activities in American PEN club and its committees. Includes agendas, munites, publications, and correspondence between committee members

Series VII: Writings by Others

Typescripts or unbound photocopies, often inscribed to Mirra Ginsburg by authors. Series does not include materials translated by MG (for original texts used for translation see Background Materials series). Alphabetical by author.

Series VIII: Periodicals

Alphabetical by title.

Series IX: Audiovisual

Subseries IX.1: Photos

Subseries IX.2: Audio

Series X: Books

Subseries X.1: Anthologies

By Title

Subseries X.2: Individual Authors

Alphabetical by author

Series XI: Oversized

Oversized items from various series, cross-referenced in the corresponding series. Box also contains an audio cassette tape of Singer Interviews (paper materials on this project are in Writings - Singer series).

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Using the Collection


Access Restrictions

This collection is located on-site.

This collection has no restrictions.

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 the Bakhmeteff Archive, 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); Mirra Ginsburg Papers; Box and Folder; Bakhmeteff Archive, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.

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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

Papers processed 3/2003 Jane Gorjevsky.

Machine readable finding aid generated from MARC-AMC source via XSLT conversion October 23, 2009 Finding aid written in English.
    2010-01-21 Legacy finding aid created from Pro Cite.

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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:
Aitmatov, Chingiz.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
American literature--20th century.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
American literature--Translations.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Annenkov, I︠U︡riĭ, 1889-1974.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Authors, Russian--20th century.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Belinkov, A. (Arkadiĭ), 1921-1970.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Children's literature, American.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Children's literature, Russian.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Chukovskiĭ, Korneĭ, 1882-1969.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Ginsburg, Mirra.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Gulʹ, Roman, 1896-1986.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Russia--Emigration and immigration.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Singer, Isaac Bashevis, 1904-1991.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Wilson, Edmund 1895-1972.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID

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History / Biographical Note

Biographical Note

Mirra Ginsburg (1909-2000) was born in Bobruisk, Russia (now Belarus). She attended schools in Russia, Latvia, Canada and the United States, where her family moved c. 1928. Throughout her long and prolific career, Mirra Ginsburg has worked as a researcher, freelance writer, editor, and translator from Russian and Yiddish. Despite the absense of any formal training, Mirra Ginsburg became a highly respected translator, an active member of professional associations, and a winner of numerous awards. Besides being a translator and editor of adult stories, anthologies and plays (including works of such authors as Singer, Platonov, Bulgakov, Remizov, Babel' and Dostoevsky), she was also recognized for her charming adaptations and siccinct translations of folktales for children.

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