Rare Book & Manuscript Library
 

Manning Marable papers, 1967-2012

Summary Information

Abstract

Marable was a leading figure in African-American studies as well as a historian, social theorist, and political activist. The collection includes appointment books, biographical information, budgets, clippings, correspondence, drafts, lecture notes, manuscripts, photographs, proposals, reports, speeches, syllabi, and teaching materials.

At a Glance

Call No.: MS#1614
Bib ID 9364858 View CLIO record
Creator(s) Marable, Manning, 1950-2011
Title Manning Marable papers, 1967-2012
Physical Description 140 linear feet (140 linear feet 92 record cartons 57 document boxes 2 card files boxes and 2 flat boxes)
Language(s) English .
Access

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least two business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

The records in Box 90 are restricted until 2041. Otherwise, this collection has no restrictions.

Arrangement

Arrangement

This collection is arranged in six series and several subseries. Series I: Correspondence, 1971-1999 Subseries I.1: General Political Correspondence, 1981-1994, 1998; Subseries I.2: General Professional Correspondence, 1974-1995; Subseries I.3: Alphabetical Correspondence, 1971-1999; Series II: Administrative and Editorial Files, 1971-2011 Subseries II.1: Biographical and Family Files, 1978-2008; Subseries II.2: General Files, 1978-2011; Subseries II.3: Larger Project and Subject Files, 1971-2011; Subseries II.4: Essays, Speeches, Texts, 1991-2011; Series III: Chronological Files, 1967-2012; Series IV: Appointment Books, 1979-2011; Series V: Printed Materials, 1968-2004 Subseries V.1: Printed Materials Related to Manning Marable, 1968-2003; Subseries V.2: Inscribed Materials, 1970s-2000s; Subseries V.3: Other Printed Materials, 1968-2004; Series VI: Audiovisual Materials, circa 1974-2005, undated; Series VII: Card Files, undated

Description

Scope and Content

William Manning Marable was a leading figure in African-American studies as well as a historian, social theorist, and political activist, consistently positioning himself at the cutting edge of the struggle for racial equality and other progressive causes. The records in this collection document Marable's academic, political, and scholarly work.

The collection is comprehensive in its coverage. The earliest records are newspapers that document Marable's work for the Daily Express and the Earlham Post (1968-1970), high-school photographs (1967), and files related to his undergraduate and graduate studies (1970-1976). Coverage of his professional and political work exists for the full length of his career, and the records include appointment books, biographical information, budgets, clippings, correspondence, curriculum vitae, drafts, lecture notes, manuscripts, meeting materials, notebooks, photographs, proposals, reports, research notes, speeches, syllabi, and teaching materials.

Marable's academic activities included administrative work, research, teaching, writing, and involvement in conferences and other professional activities. The earliest records document Marable's undergraduate and graduate studies and include articles, book reviews, notebooks, papers, photographs, research correspondence and notes, teaching files, and Marable's dissertation, "African Nationalist: The Life of John Langalibalele Dube" (1976). The records also include professional and teaching files from Marable's academic positions, and these include appointment letters, conference planning materials, committee materials, correspondence, curriculum vitae, departmental and other institutional communications, lecture notes, meeting notes, syllabi, teaching materials, and updates regarding his professional activities. As Marable's career progressed, he took on more administrative duties, and these activities are documented through budgets, conference and program materials, correspondence, meeting materials, planning materials, proposals, and reports. The records also include documentation of his activities in the larger academic world, and include information on Marable's participation in conferences, lectures, and trips outside of his institutional duties.

Marable's scholarship is well-documented in the records. The records include contracts, correspondence, meeting notes, research notes, drafts, and final typescripts related to articles, book reviews, books, chapters, editorial work, essays, lectures, and speeches. Marable also wrote poetry, and there are some drafts and examples of his work in the collection.

Records related to the Malcolm X Project and to Marable's research for Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention (2011) are in a separate collection entitled, "Malcolm X Project (MXP) Records." There are some teaching materials, as well as drafts for articles and lectures related to Malcolm X in the Manning Marable Papers.

Marable was a frequent lecturer, speaker, and commentator. The texts for many of Marable's lectures and speeches are included in this collection. These files may include drafts, revisions, and final copies, particularly if a Marable spoke on a specific topic or theme on several occasions over time. The collection also includes some business files related to his speaking activities, which were sometimes arranged through the American Program Bureau (APB).

The records also document Marable's political work, including his involvement with several political organizations including Institute of the Black World (IBW), National Black Political Assembly, National Black Independent Political Party (NBIPP), New American Movement (NAM), Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), Committees of Correspondence, and Black Radical Congress (BRC). These records include correspondence, conference and meeting materials, and membership materials. Marable also wrote the political columns "From the Grassroots" and "Along the Color Line" and the records related to these include clippings, correspondence, drafts, mailing lists, newspaper information, promotional materials and typed copies of the columns. Marable's political speeches are also included in the collection.

The records do not include personal or family materials.

The records include photographs, which are mainly professional portrait shots, or related to specific events. The collection also includes some audio and video materials related to conferences, appearances, interviews, and other commentaries or speeches made by Marable.

  • Series I: Correspondence

    This series contains Marable's political and professional correspondence. Marable organized this set of correspondence in files labeled as political or professional, or with the name of the organization, publication, or subject. There is additional correspondence in both Series II and Series III.

  • Series II: Administrative and Editorial Files

    This series contains files related to Marable's academic, administrative, editorial, political and professional activities.

    These files were kept in Marable's office at Columbia University. Marable also kept files in his home related to many of the same activities and subjects; these are in filed in Series III: Chronological Files.

    The records include material related to Marable's academic, administrative, and teaching activities. The files include biographical profiles, curriculum vitae, and professional activity information forms that were used for academic purposes. Other records relate to courses and seminars taught by Marable, and these files include reading lists, syllabi, lectures notes, and teaching materials. There are also files related to administrative activities and special projects; these files include budgets, correspondence, grant applications, lecture notes, meetings materials and notes, programs, promotional materials, proposals and reports. Marable also attended, planned, and participated in academic conferences and seminars, and there are files related to these activities in this series.

    The files also document Marable's editorial and writing work and include records related to articles, books, columns, dissertations, essays, lectures, speeches, and other research and writing projects where Marable was an author, contributor, or editor. These files include clippings, correspondence, drafts, manuscripts, meeting notes, memos, proposals, typescripts, and proofs, as well as research correspondence and files. Marable also wrote poetry, and there are some drafts and examples of his work in the collection.

    This series also contains files related to Marable's political work, including his columns, "Along the Color Line" and "From the Grassroots," as well as his work with the Black Radical Congress (BRC) and the National Black Caucus of States Institute (NBCSI).

    For the most part, the files were originally arranged in sets of larger project and subject files, but other files were less organized. While the files have been left in their original physical order, the container list has been arranged into subseries to facilitate access to the records.

  • Series III: Chronological Files

    This series contains materials similar to those in Series II but these files were maintained in a loose chronological arrangement by Marable.

    These files were kept in Marable's home. Marable also kept files in his campus office related to many of the same activities and subjects; these are in filed in Series II: Administrative and Editorial Files.

    The records include material related to Marable's academic, administrative, and teaching activities. The files include biographical profiles, curriculum vitae, and professional activity information forms that were used for academic purposes. Other records relate to courses and seminars taught by Marable, and these files include reading lists, syllabi, lectures notes, and teaching materials. There are also files related to administrative activities and special projects; these files include budgets, correspondence, grant applications, lecture notes, meetings materials and notes, programs, promotional materials, proposals and reports. Marable also attended, planned, and participated in academic conferences and seminars, and there are files related to these activities in this series.

    The files also document Marable's editorial and writing work and include records related to articles, books, columns, dissertations, essays, lectures, speeches, and other research and writing projects where Marable was an author, contributor, or editor. These files include clippings, correspondence, drafts, manuscripts, meeting notes, memos, proposals, typescripts, and proofs, as well as research correspondence and files. Marable also wrote poetry, and there are some drafts and examples of his work in the collection.

    This series also contains files related to Marable's political work, including his columns, "Along the Color Line" and "From the Grassroots," as well as his work with political organizations including Institute of the Black World (IBW), National Black Political Assembly, National Black Independent Political Party (NBIPP), New American Movement (NAM), Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), Committees of Correspondence, and Black Radical Congress (BRC). These records include clippings, correspondence, conference and meeting materials, drafts, mailing lists, membership materials, promotional materials, speeches, and typed copies of his political columns.

    These files are listed in their original order although some files have been moved to larger boxes for preservation purposes.

  • Series IV: Appointment Books

    This series contains Marable's appointment books for 1979-2011, with a few gaps in coverage. These contain detailed information regarding Marable's activities and appointments, and often include contact information related to specific events.

  • Series V: Printed Materials

    This series contains books, brochures, clippings, conference proceedings, course readers, journals, magazines, newspapers, pamphlets, reprints, and other printed materials.

  • Series VI: Audiovisual Materials

    This series contains audiocassettes, audio tape reels, compact discs, DVDs, and videocassettes.

  • Series VII: Card Files

General Note

Records related to the Malcolm X Project and to Marable's research for Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention (2011) are in a separate collection entitled"Malcolm X Project (MXP) Records." There are some teaching materials, as well as drafts for articles and lectures related to Malcolm X in the Manning Marable Papers

Using the Collection

Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Restrictions on Access

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least two business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

The records in Box 90 are restricted until 2041. Otherwise, this collection has no restrictions.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Manning Marable Papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.

Selected Related Material-- at Columbia

Malcolm X Project Records, Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Accrual

No additions are expected

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Processing Information

Papers processed by Catherine C. Ricciardi, Maya Meredith (CC 2014), and Tiffany Poras (CC 2016), 2013-2015.

Finding aid written by Catherine C. Ricciardi July 2015.

Revision Description

2015-07-17 File created.

2015-07-17 XML document instance created by Catherine C. Ricciardi

2016-02-10 XML document instance updated by Catherine C. Ricciardi

2016-07-01 XML document instance updated by Catherine C. Ricciardi

2018-03-30 XML document instance updated by Catherine C. Ricciardi

2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.

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.

Genre/Form

Heading "CUL Archives:"
"Portal"
"CUL Collections:"
"CLIO"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
"ArchivedGRID"
Appointment books Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Budgets Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Clippings (Information Artifacts) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Correspondence Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Drafts (documents) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Grant proposals Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Lecture notes Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Notes Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Photographs Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Proposals Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Research notes Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Resumes (personnel records) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Speeches Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Syllabi Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
manuscripts (document genre) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
typescripts Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

Subject

Heading "CUL Archives:"
"Portal"
"CUL Collections:"
"CLIO"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
"ArchivedGRID"
African American college administrators Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African American college teachers Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African American historians Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African American intellectuals Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African American political activists Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- Civil rights Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- Education (Higher) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- History Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- Politics and government -- 20th century Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- Reparations Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- Social conditions Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- Study and teaching Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- Study and teaching (Higher) -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- Study and teaching (Secondary) -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
African Americans -- Study and teaching -- Education (Higher) -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Black Radical Congress Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Columbia University -- Faculty Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Columbia University. Center for Contemporary Black History Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Columbia University. Institute for Research in African-American Studies Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Committees of Correspondence (U.S.) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Communist Workers Party (U.S.) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee (U.S.) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Democratic Socialists of America Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Marable, Manning, 1950-2011 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Mullings, Leith Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
National Black Independent Political Party (U.S.) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
New American Movement (Organization) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Ohio State University. Department of Black Studies Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Poetry Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Racism -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Racism -- United States -- Study and teaching (Higher) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Socialist Workers Party Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
University of Colorado Boulder. Center for Studies of Ethnicity and Race in America Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Biographical Note

William Manning Marable (May 13, 1950-April 1, 2011) was a leading theorist and historian of socioeconomic and racial inequality. Born May 13, 1950 in Dayton, Ohio, Marable was the son of educators. Active in school groups and student movements, Marable cultivated his love of history and writing early. He went on to attend Earlham College (1971), and received a master's degree (1972) and PhD (1976) in history from the University of Wisconsin and University of Maryland, respectively.

Following his studies, Marable served on the faculty of Tuskegee Institute; University of San Francisco; Cornell University; Fisk University; Colgate University, where he was the founding director of the Africana and Hispanic studies program; Purdue University; Ohio State University as chair of the Department of Black Studies; and University of Colorado, Boulder, where Marable served as co-chair of Critical Studies of the Americas.

Marable strongly believed that institution building was central to maintaining and sustaining black studies, which he understood to be an alternative to the traditional hegemonic history. In 1993, he became the Founding Director of the Institute for Research in African American Studies (IRAAS). During his tenure (1993-2003), the Institute launched academic programs for undergraduate and graduate students centered on teaching the African American freedom struggle. As a teacher and mentor, Marable was devoted to fostering achievement and cultivating student talent—placing students in leadership roles on institutional projects.

He was equally making knowledge available to the broader community. He was the founding editor of Souls, a journal named for W.E.B. DuBois' seminal work, which became a leading journal for African American studies and black political thought. Marable also founded the Columbia Center for Contemporary Black History (2002-2011), an interdisciplinary research center designed to promote the critical study of black politics, history, and culture. Marable launched several initiatives, including the Amistad Digital Resource Project, the Malcolm X Project, and the Africana Criminal Justice Project, all of which shared a commitment to social justice, equitable access, and public education.

Although Marable was known for writing his many manuscripts freehand—filling sheets upon sheets of yellow loose leaf with his impeccable script—he was in fact a man well ahead of his time with respect to digital humanities. Early on in his tenure at Columbia University, Marable piloted what would be his first of several digital humanities projects, launching a multimedia project that reexamined Du Bois' The Souls of Black Folk.

His commitment to the idea that all knowledge should be public motivated him to write and produce a free column that examined black politics, culture, and current events for nearly thirty years. The column, "From the Grassroots" (later "Along the Color Line), was syndicated in over 320 publications across the globe.

Throughout his career, Marable acted on his belief that theory and practice were inseparable and was active in a broad array of political organizations and an advisor to many more. These included the Institute for the Black World, the Democratic Socialists of America DSA), the National Black Political Assembly (NBPA), the National Black Independent Political Party (NBIPP) and the Committees of Correspondence. In 1998, along with his wife, Leith Mullings, he was one of the co-founders of the Black Radical Congress (BRC).

Influenced by black radical thinkers from DuBois to CLR James to Walter Rodney, Marable's worked from an intellectual tradition that was anti-imperialist, anti-racist, and anti-capitalist. These themes were all central to his influential How Capitalism Underdeveloped Black America (1983). The third edition, with a Foreward from his wife, Leith Mullings, underscoring its relevance to the current period, was published in 2015, which recently entered its third edition—a testament to its enduring intellectual significance. His written work demonstrated a profound and unique commitment and evolution as a writer, scholar, thinker and political activist. The author of over 30 manuscripts, Marable's other work includes Race, Reform and Rebellion: The Second Reconstruction in Black America, 1945-1982 (1984); Speaking Truth to Power: Essays on Race, Resistance, and Radicalism (1996); Let Nobody Turn Us Around (with Leith Mullings, 2000); Freedom: A Photographic History of the African American Struggle (with Leith Mullings, 2002); and Living Black History: How Reimagining the African American Past Can Remake America's Racial Future (2006).

His final book, Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention, was the culmination of a nearly twenty-year investigation of Malcolm X. The acclaimed biography was awarded the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in History and was a finalist for the National Book Award. Documentation of that work is in catalogued in the Malcolm X Project collection, found here (hyperlink). Marable suffered from sarcoidosis for many years, and underwent a double lung transplant in July 2010. He died of complications from pneumonia on April 1, 2011.