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Finding aid of the Oreste F. Pucciani Papers
Coll2008-059  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Processing Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms
  • Separated Materials

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Oreste F. Pucciani papers
    Dates: circa 1890-1998.
    Bulk Dates: 1950-1985.
    Collection number: Coll2008-059
    Creator: Pucciani, Oreste F., 1916-1999
    Collection Size: 10 archive cartons + 1 archive half-carton. 4.3 linear feet.
    Repository: ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives.
    Los Angeles, California 90007
    Abstract: This collection contains materials relating primarily to the private life of Oreste Pucciani (1916-1999), UCLA Professor of French and Sartre scholar, documenting in particular his relationship with his long-time lover, Rudi Gernreich, and his close friends, art director Jacques Faure (1926-1986), poet Stanley Kuniholm (1912-1984), and Lionel Mailles (born 1951). The bulk of Pucciani's personal writings consists of erotic short stories written most probably between 1975 and 1980. The bulk of the materials relating to Rudi Gernreich consists of condolence letters to Pucciani after Gernreich's death, together with a small number of cards and letters addressed to Gernreich, letters to Pucciani from Gernreich's mother, and a videocassette recording of a talk given by Pucciani on his late partner in 1993. The bulk of the materials relating to Faure, Kuniholm, and Mailles consists of letters received by Pucciani; however, the Mailles files include copies of letters, poems, and essays addressed by Pucciani to Mailles. The materials received from Kuniholm include a large number of poems, short stories, and essays documenting the poet's creative processes. The collection also contains a small number of subject files, publications, and miscellaneous memorabilia and ephemera.
    Languages: Languages represented in the collection: French English

    Access

    The collection is open to researchers. There are no access restrictions.

    Publication Rights

    Researchers wishing to publish materials must obtain permission in writing from ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives as the physical owner. Researchers must also obtain clearance from the holder(s) of any copyrights in the materials. Note that ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives can grant copyright clearance only for those materials for which we hold the copyright. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain copyright clearance for all other materials directly from the copyright holder(s).

    Preferred Citation

    Oreste F. Pucciani papers, Coll2008-059, ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives, Los Angeles, California.

    Acquisition Information

    Circumstances of acquisition unknown.

    Processing Information

    Formerly boxes 103-338, 103-339, 103-345, and 103-349. Collection processed by Michael P. Palmer, November 4, 2008.
    Processing this collection has been funded by a generous grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

    Biography

    Oreste Francesco Pucciani was born in Cleveland on April 7, 1916, the son of a candy manufacturer. He attended the Cleveland public schools and graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Adelbert College, Western Reserve University (now Case Western University) in 1939. He took his doctorate in Romance languages from Harvard in 1943. In 1946-47, Pucciani studied in France and Italy on a Sheldon Traveling Fellowship, meeting Sartre and his companion Simone de Beauvoir. Returning to the United States in 1947, Pucciani lectured at Harvard, before joining the faculty of the University of California Los Angeles as an Assistant Professor of French in 1948. He was became an Associate Professor in 1954, and a full Professor in 1960. He was chairman of the French department from 1961 to 1966, and became emeritus in 1979.
    Pucciani's scholarly interests were diverse. His doctoral dissertation was devoted to the reception of Walt Whitman in France. The French Theater since 1930 (1954) remains a useful anthology of French theater in the years between the world wars. He also published a well regarded translation of Racine's masterpiece Phédre in 1961. But Pucciani is best known as an interpreter of the philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre, and pioneered in teaching courses on Sartre at UCLA before the philosopher's works were translated into English.
    In addition to his work on Sartre, Pucciani was well known as a theorist on methods of language acquisition. He had studied with Emile B. de Sauzé at Western Reserve in the 1930s, and was an ardent champion of Sauzé's "direct method" of language teaching, in which all instruction, including explanations of grammar and vocabulary, is given in the target language. In the late 1950s, Pucciani pioneered in adapting the direct method (still little known outside the Cleveland public schools) to the UCLA French Department's language program. The highly successful and influential textbook, Langue et Langage, published by Pucciani and Jacqueline Hamel in 1967, described the department's experience with the direct method, and revealed the advantages of immediate and total immersion in a foreign tongue.
    For his services to French language and culture, Pucciani was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Legion of Honor by the French government in 1965.
    Pucciani was the long-time lover of fashion designer Rudi Gernreich. In 1988, after Gernreich's death, he established the ACLU Rudi Gernreich-Oreste Pucciani Endowment Fund to support the fight for GLBT rights.
    He died in Los Angeles on April 28, 1999.
    Source:
    1999, University of California: In Memoriam, http://content.cdlib.org/xtf/view?docId=hb267nb0r3&brand=calisphere   (accessed November 2, 2008).

    Scope and Content of Collection

    This collection contains materials relating primarily to the private life of UCLA Professor of French and Sartre scholar Oreste Pucciani, documenting in particular his relationship with his long-time lover, Rudi Gernreich, and several of his close friends. The collection is arranged in the following series: 1. Oreste Pucciani; 2. Rudi Gernreich; 3. Friends; 4. Subject Files; 5. Publications; 6 Audio Visual; and 7. Miscellanea. The bulk of Pucciani's writings consists of erotic short stories written most probably between 1975 and 1980. The writings also include a number of poems, possibly translations of works by Stanley Kuniholm. The bulk of the materials relating to Rudi Gernreich consists of condolence letters to Pucciani after Gernreich's death. Other materials include a small number of cards and letters addressed to Gernreich, and letters to Pucciani from Gernreich's mother. The Friends Series documents in particular Pucciani's relationship with three men, Jacques Faure, Stanley Kuniholm, and Lionel Mailles. The bulk of the materials consists of letters received by Pucciani; however, the Mailles files include copies of letters, poems, and essays addressed by Pucciani to Mailles. The materials received from Kuniholm include a large number of poems, short stories, and essays. The collection also contains a small number of subject files, publications, a videocassette recording of a talk given by Pucciani on Rudi Gernreich in 1993, and miscellaneous memorabilia and ephemera.

    Arrangement

    • Series 1. Oreste Pucciani
    • Series 2. Rudi Gernreich
    • Series 3. Friends
      • Subseries 3.1. Jacques Faure
      • Subseries 3.2. Stanley Kuniholm
      • Subseries 3.3. Lionel Mailles
      • Subseries 3.4. Other Correspondents


    • Series 4. Subject Files
    • Series 5. Publications
    • Series 6. Audio Visual
    • Series 7. Miscellanea

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    Designers
    Fashion designers
    Faure, Jacques, 1926-1986
    Gay erotic literature
    Gay men's writings, American
    Gay men's writings, French
    Gays' writings, American
    Gays' writings, French
    Gernreich, Rudi, 1922-1985
    Kuniholm, Stanley, 1912-1984
    Mailles, Lionel, 1951-
    Poets, American--20th century
    Poets, French--20th century
    Poetry
    Pucciani, Oreste F., 1916-1999
    Short stories

    Separated Materials

    Additional papers of Oreste Pucciani constitute the Oreste Pucciani Papers (Collection 585), Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.