The materials in the Alix Kates Shulman Papers span the dates 1892 to 2000, with the bulk of materials dating from 1968 to 2000. These materials include: manuscripts, notes, clippings, published books, correspondence, photographs, audio and videotapes, microfilm, address and date books, family and business records. The primary focus of the collection is Shulman's writing and literary career. The secondary focus is the women's liberation and feminist movements, in which Shulman was and continues to be very active (from 1968 to the present). However, feminism and feminist activism are inextricably intertwined with Shulman's writing career, and her 1972 novel Memoirs of an Ex-Prom Queen is regarded by many as the first novel to "come out of" the women's liberation movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s.
Other topics covered by the collection include: her teaching and other academic work; her public speaking and conference activities; and her involvement in political activities besides feminism. This collection sheds valuable light on the concerns and tensions within the women's liberation and second-wave feminist movements. In particular, the materials document debates and disagreements among those active in the movement with regard to sexuality, marriage and domestic relations, women's financial situation and careers, health care, civil rights and cultural expression. Many of these issues are raised in Shulman's own work, including her novels, essays, short fiction, personal letters and her teaching materials.
The collection is divided into seven series. The Personal Papers Series contains Shulman's family history papers, photographs, biographical papers, and her personal correspondence (with writers, academics, political activists and family members). Notable correspondents include Ros Baxandall, Jay Bolotin, Kay Boyle, Rita Mae Brown, Phyllis Chesler, Judy Chicago, Andrea Dworkin, Candace Falk, Marilyn French, Lori Ginzberg, Hannah Green, Erica Jong, Kate Millett, Honor Moore, Robin Morgan, Tillie Olson, Lillian Rubin, Sue Standing, and Meredith Tax. The Political Work Series contains material relating to Shulman's involvement with feminist and other liberal political groups, including Redstockings, New York Radical Women, the PEN Women's Committee, No More Nice Girls, the Women's Action Coalition, and Women Against Government Surveillance
The Literary Work Series contains a variety of materials relating to Shulman's literary career, including financial and other dealings with publishing houses, notes and research, photocopies of publications, reviews of her work, articles and notes she collected regarding the literary scene, and original manuscripts. This series contains information about her early children's books; several books she edited of Emma Goldman's writings; her essays and short fiction; her novels Memoirs of an Ex-Prom Queen (1972), Burning Questions (1975), On the Stroll (1977), In Every Woman's Life . . . (1980); and her memoirs Drinking the Rain (1995) and A Good Enough Daughter (1999). A small amount of correspondence regarding book reviews of other authors' work is also included.
The Academic Work Series contains materials relating to Shulman's graduate work at NYU; her teaching at Yale, the University of Colorado at Boulder, NYU, and the University of Hawaii at Manoa; as well as her relationships with her students. The Public Speaking Series contains materials relating to Shulman's participation in literary and political conferences and gatherings, personal interviews, lectures and book talks.
Portions of the Restricted Materials Series either may not be photocopied without prior permission of Ms. Shulman or the relevant author, or may not be accessed until a future date. The same organizational categories have been applied to the restricted materials as were used in the unrestricted materials to help researchers easily access overlapping and related materials that have been boxed separately due to the restrictions. The Oversize Materials Series contains miscellaneous oversize materials of a biographical and literary nature.
Acquired as part of the Sallie Bingham Center for Women's History and Culture.
The Kentucky Foundation for Women Records span the dates 1985-2017. The collection provides a rich source of information about grassroots feminist activism, philanthropy, not-for-profit organizations and artistic patronage, feminist art and women's culture. The records of the Foundation include a range of materials, primarily a large number of grant files, including applications and supporting materials of those awarded grants. Also notable are the files for its publication, The American Voice, which include correspondence, copy-edited drafts of poetry and other writings, business records, other publications, miscellaneous ephemera, broadsides, and books of poetry. In addition, there is information on the Hopscotch House and Wolf Pen Writers Colony, miscellaneous correspondence, subject files, annual reports, newsletters, and brochures. The records consist primarily of files, but videocassettes, audiocassettes, and compact disks are also included. The collection is divided into four series: Administrative Files, Project Files, American Voice Files, and Grant Files.
The Administrative Files Series contains Foundation newsletters; administrative correspondence; minutes of Board of Directors meetings; and financial, legal and tax papers. The Project Files Series contains papers on short-term special projects, as well as long-term projects such as the Hopscotch House and the Wolf Pen Women Writers Colony. The American Voice Files Series contains information regarding the publication of the feminist literary journal The American Voice. The series contains correspondence between the editors ( Frederick Smock and Sallie Bingham) and contributors; copy-edited drafts of poetry, prose, and non-fiction essays; business records; broadsides; chapbooks (i.e. hand-bound books); miscellaneous publications; and a partially complete run of the journal. Some of the better-known authors to be published in The American Voice include: Paula Gunn Allen, Isabel Allende, Wendell Berry, Jorge Louis Borges, Kay Boyle, Jo Carson, Andrea Dworkin, Elaine Equi, Doris Grumbach, Joy Harjo, Fenton Johnson, Robin Morgan, Marge Piercy, Reynolds Price, Joyce Carol Oates, and Anne Firor Scott.
Finally, the largest series, the Grant Files Series, contains documentation on the evolution of the Foundation's grant program over the years, as well as files on those projects that received grant monies from the Foundation from 1986 to 1993. The Foundation awarded grants to both men and women, though women are in the majority. The grants supported the work of visual artists, writers, scholars, musicians, composers, documentary and fiction filmmakers, playwrights, painters, sculptors, puppeteers, quilters and other fabric artists, political activists, advocates for physically handicapped women, and those concerned with women and religion and women's employment issues. A unique concern of the grant givers was supporting the exploration and improvement of the situation of women in Appalachia, encouraging women to explore and study the wilderness, and defining and encouraging the emerging field of Ecofeminism.
The addition (Accession 2001-0012) (2208 items, 3.8 lin. ft.; dated 1986-1999) continues to document the process of publishing The American Voice. Materials include correspondence, board minutes, grant applications and evaluations, financial statements, video (3) and audio (4) cassettes and one audio compact disc, and information files for volumes 32-49. Also included are writings by Sallie Bingham. Acquired as part of the Sallie Bingham Center for Women's History and Culture.
The addition (Accession 2007-0126) (5 lin. ft.) consists primarily of files documenting the organization's grant program, and also includes project files, files related to the feminist literary journal The American Voice, publications, and files from Hopscotch House.
The Sallie Bingham Papers provide rich documentation of the personal life, literary development, and philanthropic activities of Sallie Bingham, feminist and writer. The papers, dated 1900-2011, with the bulk of the materials dating from the 1940s to 2011, are comprised of correspondence, speeches, writings, subject files, personal papers, diaries and notebooks, legal and financial papers, audiovisual recordings, and photographic media. Included also are some records of The Kentucky Foundation for Women, a philanthropic organization founded by Bingham; The American Voice, a literary journal founded by Bingham and published under the auspices of The Kentucky Foundation for Women; and Santa Fe Stages, a regional theater founded by Bingham. Arranged into the following series: Audiovisual Materials, Correspondence, Diaries and Notebooks, Kentucky Foundation for Women, Legal and Financial, Miscellaneous, Photographs, Poetry, Santa Fe Stages, Speeches, Subject Files, Writings, and Oversize Material, with the Writings, Diaries and Notebooks, and Correspondence Series composing the bulk of the collection.
The Writings Series is central to the collection, and is correspondingly substantial, comprising over half of the papers. It includes drafts, research, correspondence and publicity related to such novels as Small Victories, Upstate, Matron of Honor, and Straight Man, her memoir Passion and Prejudice, the writing and production of the plays The Awakening and The Death of Henry Flagler as well as poetry and many short, personal essays. The Poetry Series consists of individual poems, while compendiums of poetry are in the Writings Series. Many of Bingham's writings (including poems, novels, short stories, plays and essays) exist as electronic files and are available to researchers. These files are listed in the Poetry and the Writings Series. The Diaries and Notebooks Series contains material spanning her entire life -- from her adolescence in Louisville, Kentucky in the 1940s to her experiences living in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and contain many ideas for writings and references to the process of writing. The Correspondence Series also spans the same period of time, and contains family correspondence spanning many decades, as well as literary and personal correspondence between Bingham and such well-known authors, activists and artists as Judy Chicago and Gloria Steinem. The smaller Speeches Series houses writings by Bingham for public engagements, and in addition to contributing to a portrait of Bingham as a writer, documents her explication of feminist issues relating to women in the corporate world, in publishing, and women in history.
Bingham, born into a prominent Louisville, Ky. family that owned The Louisville Courier-Journal, worked for the newspaper as book page editor, 1982-1985. She also took an active seat on the board of the Bingham Enterprises, which was responsible for The Courier-Journal and other media corporations in the Louisville area. Bingham's desire to sell her shares in the stock in the newspaper resulted in the sale of The Courier-Journal in 1986. The Bingham family and the break-up of the Bingham Enterprises were the subject of at least four books ( The Binghams of Louisville, House of Dreams, The Patriarch and Bingham's Passion and Prejudice) and much media attention. Materials concerning this aspect of Bingham's life can be found in the Legal and Financial Papers Series and Subject Files Series. Audiovisual materials in the Audiotapes and Videotapes Series document aspects of Bingham's career and life through interviews and other events.
NOTE: This collection also contains numerous additions that have not been processed. For descriptions of later additions, please see below or consult the library's online catalog.