Allan Gurganus (1947- ), a gay, white, Southern writer, was born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina. Gurganus trained as a painter, served in the United States Navy during the Vietnam War, then studied at Sarah Lawrence College and the Iowa Writers' Workshop. He later taught writing at Sarah Lawrence College; the Iowa Writers' Workshop; Stanford University; and Duke University. The collection includes the following series: (1) Writings; (2) Correspondence; (3) Personal Papers; (4) Artwork; and (5) Others' Works.
The (1) Writings Series is divided into the Books, Novellas and Articles subseries, Uncollected Works subseries, and Addresses and Speeches subseries. Gurganus's writings, collected here as manuscripts, typescripts, and proofs with notes, documenting his development of well-known and critically-acclaimed works. His collected works include White People; The Practical Heart; Plays Well with Others; and, Local Souls. Gurganus's other books and individual stories, essays, and drawings or illustrations related to the titles are included in this Series.
The (2) Correspondence Series is divided into the Chronological Correspondence subseries which consists of letters to and from Gurganus, publishers, and friends, and the Correspondence, Alphabetical by Name subseries is comprised of correspondence between Gurganus and other writers, artists, literary figures, and close friends.
The (3) Personal Papers Series contains Gurganus's family correspondence, documents, many of the books, letters, art and photographs kept in his home. Financial and legal records as well as documentation of his writing career through contracts and royalty statements are also included in this series. The (4) Artwork Series is comprised of doodles, drawings, paintings, and sketches. Series (5) Others' Works, includes books, articles, and typescripts written by friends, students, and others.