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Guide to the J. Hillis Miller Papers MS.C.013
MS.C.013  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Acquisition Information
  • Preferred Citation
  • Processing History
  • Biographical note
  • Collection Scope and Content Summary
  • Arrangement
  • Dissertations removed

  • Title: J. Hillis Miller papers
    Identifier/Call Number: MS.C.013
    Contributing Institution: Special Collections and Archives, University of California, Irvine Libraries
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 73.2 linear feet (77 Boxes) and 11.8 GB of unprocessed digital material
    Date (inclusive): 1930-2011
    Date (bulk): Bulk, 1970-2011
    Language of Collection Materials: Collection materials are primarily in English, with some French, Chinese, Italian, Russian, and German.
    Abstract: This collection consists of scholarly and personal papers of J. Hillis Miller (1928 - ), literary critic and Professor of Comparative Literature and English at the University of California, Irvine. The collection best documents Miller's intellectual life as a specialist in Victorian and Modern British and American literature, a Derridean deconstructionist, and a university educator. Some personal material, such as family papers, photographs, and awards, are also included.
    Creator: Miller, J. Hillis (Joseph Hillis), 1928-

    Access

    The collection is open for research. General correspondence, including email, is restricted for 25 years from date of creation. This restriction may be lifted with permission from the donor. All student and employee records are restricted for 75 years due to third party privacy issues. Boxes 66 though 72 of this collection contain correspondence restricted for 25 years from date of creation, and boxes 76 and 77 contain letters of recommendation restricted for 75 years.

    Publication Rights

    Property rights reside with the University of California. Copyrights are generally retained by the creators of the records and their heirs, unless transferred to the University of California. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where the UC Regents do not hold the copyright.
    For information on use, copyright, and attribution, please visit: http://special.lib.uci.edu/using/publishing.html

    Acquisition Information

    Gifts of J. Hillis Miller, 2000, 2002, 2010, 2011.

    Preferred Citation

    J. Hillis Miller Papers. MS-C013. Special Collections and Archives, The UC Irvine Libraries, Irvine, California. Date accessed.
    For the benefit of current and future researchers, please cite any additional information about sources consulted in this collection, including permanent URLs, item or folder descriptions, and box/folder locations.

    Processing History

    Processed by Alexandra M. Bisio and Sara Hrachovy, 2013-2014.

    Biographical note

    J. Hillis Miller is a Distinguished Professor of Comparative Literature and English at the University of California, Irvine. He is an internationally recognized scholar in the field of nineteenth and twentieth century English and American literature and in literary theory.
    Miller was born in Newport News, Virginia on March 5, 1928. He spent much of his childhood on college and university campuses in New York as his father, J. Hillis Miller, Sr., served as both President of Keuka College and as Associate Commissioner of Higher and Professional Education for New York State. In 1944, at the age of sixteen, Miller entered Oberlin College intending to study physics. In his sophomore year, with encouragement from his future wife, Dorothy James, he changed his course of study to literature.
    Following his graduation from Oberlin in January of 1948, Miller entered the graduate program in English at Harvard University receiving his Master’s degree in 1949 and his Ph.D. in 1952. While at Harvard, Miller studied under many prominent scholars including Hyder Rollins, George Sherburn, Archibald MacLeish, Walter Jackson Bate, and Douglas Bush, but found himself drawn away from traditional literary study and toward works on literary theory and criticism. His unpublished dissertation, directed by Douglas Bush and entitled “The Symbolic Imagery of Charles Dickens,” was strongly influenced by the theories of Kenneth Burke.
    In 1953, after a year as an Instructor in English at Williams College, Miller was appointed Assistant Professor of English at Johns Hopkins University. He remained at Johns Hopkins for nineteen years, reaching the rank of Professor, serving as chair of the department, and holding a joint appointment in the Humanities Center. In Baltimore, Miller came into contact with several scholars who influenced his work, notably Georges Poulet and “new critic” E.R. Wasserman. It was also at the famous Hopkins Symposium in 1966 that Miller first met Jacques Derrida, and Jacques Lacan.
    In 1972, Miller left Johns Hopkins for Yale University where he was first made Professor of English, and later Gray Professor of Rhetoric, Frederick W. Hilles Professor of English, and Frederick W. Hilles Professor of English and Comparative Literature. He also served as Chair of the Department of English, Director of Graduate Studies in Comparative Literature, and Director of the Literature Major. During this time, Miller became associated with a group of critics and theorists including Jacques Derrida, Geoffrey Hartman, and Harold Bloom. Members of this group were sometimes referred to as the “Yale School of Deconstruction.”
    After fourteen years at Yale, Miller left New Haven in 1986 to become Distinguished Professor of English and Comparative Literature at UC, Irvine. At Irvine, Miller served on the Advisory Committee of the Humanities Research Institute of the University of California, many graduate student examination and dissertation committees, and was an active member of the School of Humanities' Critical Theory Institute, for which he delivered the Wellek Library Lectures, “The Ethics of Reading,” in 1985. Miller has also taught as a visiting professor at a number of universities, including the University of Hawaii, Harvard, The University of Virginia, Princeton, the University of Washington, the University of Zurich, Emory, Tulane, the Autonomous University of Barcelona, the Irvine and Dartmouth Schools of Criticism and Theory, and the National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Seminars.
    Over the course of his career, Miller has authored twenty-nine books, and published more than two hundred articles. He has been a member of editorial boards for twenty-three literary journals, including Victorian Studies, ELH, Studies in English Literature, Diacritics, and The Yale Journal of Criticism.
    Miller is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the recipient of two Guggenheim Fellowships. In 1986, he served as president of the Modern Language Association, and received the organization’s lifetime achievement award in 2005. In 1993, Miller received the Doctoris Honoris Causa at the University of Zaragoza, and in 1994, was made an honorary professor at the University of Peking. He received the UCI Medal in 2002 and has been a member of the American Philosophical Society since 2004.
    Now a Distinguished Professor emeritus, Miller currently resides on Deer Isle, Maine in the Penobscot Bay, where he is an avid sailor, and published his latest work in 2012.
    Sources
    J. Hillis Miller Papers. MS-C013. Special Collections and Archives, The UC Irvine Libraries, Irvine, California.

    Chronology

    1928 Born March 5 in Newport News, VA
    1948 B.A., Oberlin College
      Inducted into Phi Beta Kappa
    1949 M.A., Harvard University
      Fellow of the Society for Religion in Higher Education (Kent Fellow)
    1950-1952 Teaching Fellow in English, Harvard University
    1952 Ph.D., Harvard University
      Instructor in English, Williams College, Williamstown, MA
    1953-1967 Assistant, Associate, and Full Professor of English, John Hopkins University
    1958 Charles Dickens: The World of His Novels
    1959-1960 First Guggenheim Fellowship
    1963 The Disappearance of God
    1963-1967 Chairman, Humanities Group, John Hopkins University
    1964-1967 Chairman, Department of English, Johns Hopkins University
    1965 Poets of Reality
    1967 Ward-Phillips Lecturer, Notre Dame University
    1967-1972 Professor of English and Humanistic Studies, Johns Hopkins University
    1968 E. Harris Harbison Award for Distinguished Teaching
      <title render="italic">The Form of Victorian Fiction</title>
    1970 Thomas Hardy: Distance and Desire
    1972 M.A. Privatim, Yale University
    1972-1975 Professor of English, Yale University
    1973-1974 Director of the Literature Major, Yale University
    1975-1976 Gray Professor of Rhetoric, Yale University
    1976-1979 Federick W. Hilles Professor of English, Yale University
    1979-1986 Frederick W. Hilles Professor of English and Comparative Literature, Yale University
    1980 Honorary Degree, Doctor of Letters, University of Florida, Gainesville
    1980-1983 Director of the Literature Major, Yale University
    1982 Fiction and Repetition
    1986 UCI Distinguished Professor, University of California at Irvine
      <title render="italic">The Ethics of Reading</title>
    1990 Fulbright Fellow, Autonomous University of Barcelona
      <title render="italic">Versions of Pygmalion</title>
      <title render="italic">Victorian Subjects</title>
      <title render="italic">Tropes, Parables, Performatives</title>
      <title render="italic">Theory Now and Then</title>
    1991 Hawthorne and History
    1991-1992 University of California Distinguished Faculty Lectureship
    1992 University of Washington Walker-Ames Visiting Professorship
      <title render="italic">Ariadne's Thread</title>
      <title render="italic">Illustration</title>
    1993 Harry Levin Prize of the American Comparative Literature Association for <title render="italic">Illustration</title>
      Doctor Honoris Causa of the University of Zaragoza
    1994 Honorary Professor of Peking University
    2001 <title render="italic">Speech Acts in Literature</title>
      <title render="italic">Others</title>
    2002 Receives UCI Medal
      <title render="italic">On Literature</title>
    2005 <title render="italic">The J. Hillis Miller Reader</title>
      <title render="italic">Literature as Conduct: Speech Acts in Henry James </title>
    2009 <title render="italic">The Medium is the Maker: Browning, Freud, Derrida, and the New Telepathic Ecotechnologies</title>
      <title render="italic">For Derrida</title>
    2011 The Conflagration of Community: Fiction Before and After Auschwitz
    2012 Reading for Our Time: Adam Bede and Middlemarch Revisited

    Collection Scope and Content Summary

    This collection consists of scholarly and personal papers of J. Hillis Miller (1928 - ), literary critic and Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of California, Irvine. The collection best documents Miller's intellectual life as a specialist in Victorian and Modern British and American literature, a Derridean deconstructionist, and a university educator. Some personal material, such as family papers, photographs, and awards, are also included. Miller’s work primarily focuses on the novels of Charles Dickens, Thomas Hardy, George Eliot, Anthony Trollope, Henry James, Wallace Stevens, Gerard Manly Hopkins, and Joseph Conrad, as well as the philosophical compositions of Emmanuel Kant, Friedrich Nietzsche, Walter Benjamin, Paul de Man, and Jacques Derrida. Files contain manuscripts, typescript drafts, articles, notes and journals entries on these topics, including an unpublished manuscript for Miller’s section of Harcourt Brace Jovanovich's Survey of British Literature edited by Northrop Frye.
    Other materials include academic and personal correspondence; documents related to Miller’s membership in scholarly associations and conferences he attended; teaching and academic administration files from Johns Hopkins University, Yale University, and UCI; material related to the 1984 controversy surrounding Paul de Man’s wartime writings; biographical materials; audio and video recordings of lectures and interviews given by Miller; as well as writings authored by members of Miller's extensive scholarly network.
    The J. Hillis Miller papers have an unprocessed digital component not yet available to researchers. The electronic content primarily consists of drafts, correspondence, photographs, and notes. Many documents are duplicated in the analog collection accessible in the Special Collections and Archives Reading Room.

    Arrangement

    This collection is arranged in nine series:
    • Series 1. Writing and publication files, circa 1933-2000s (bulk circa 1970s-1990s), 20.25 linear feet
    • Series 2. General correspondence,1951-2010, 12.75 linear feet
    • Series 3. Association and conference material, 1952-2009, 5.25 linear feet
    • Series 4. Teaching and academic administration files, 1960-2004, 8.75 linear feet
    • Series 5. Paul de Man controversy material, 1942-1989 (bulk 1987-1989), .5 linear feet
    • Series 6. Biographical materials, 1930-2002, 1.25 linear feet
    • Series 7. Writing of others, circa 1940s-2011, 24 linear feet
    • Series 8. Audiovisual material,1983-2002, .75 linear feet
    • Series 9. Born digital files, circa 1980s-2000s, 11.8 Gigabytes
    Series 1. Writing and publication files is arranged in three subseries:
    • Subseries 1.1. Notes, 1933-1997
    • Subseries 1.2. Articles, lectures, and reviews,1943-2008
    • Subseries 1.3. Books, circa 1950s-2000s
    Series 3. Association and conference material is arranged in two subseries:
    • Subseries 1.1. Associations, 1952-2009
    • Subseries 1.2. Conferences, 1962-2006
    Series 5. Teaching and academic administration files is arranged in four subseries:
    • Subseries 5.1. Johns Hopkins University, 1960-1971
    • Subseries 5.2. Yale University, 1970-1985
    • Subseries 5.3. University of California, Irvine, 1986-2004
    • Subseries 5.4. Visiting professorships, 1964-2003
    Series 6. Biographical material is arranged in five subseries:
    • Subseries 6.1. Biographies, curricula vitea, and personal ephemera, 1965-2002
    • Subseries 6.2. Certificates and awards, 1970-2002
    • Subseries 6.3. Family material, 1981-1992
    • Subseries 6.4. Interviews, 1979-2008
    • Subseries 6.5. Photographs, 1930-2001
    Series 8. Audiovisual material is arranged in two subseries:
    • Subseries 8.1 Audio cassettes, 1983-2002
    • Subseries 8.2.Video cassettes, 1990-2002

    Dissertations removed

    The following dissertations, mostly evaluated or directed by Miller, have been removed from this collection as they are available as published works:
    Arakawa, Steven R. "The Relationship of Father and Daughter in the Novels of Charles Dickens." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1977.
    Bouse, Susan K. "Reevaluating Redundancy: The Revision of Domestic Ideology in Nineteenth Century Redundant-Woman Narratives." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1998.
    Boyer, Patricia Estella. "The Body of Death: Medusan Transfigurations of Betweenness in Keats and Swinburne." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1991.
    Brand, Dana. "The Spectator and the City: Fantasies of Urban Legibility in Nineteenth Century England and America." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1981.
    Brogan, Kate. "Elizabeth Bishop: Romantic Revisionism and the Poetry of Exile." PhD dissertation, Yale University.
    Buckholtz, Alexander Mark. "Rehearsing the Last Judgment: Politics, Penance, and Ritual Theatre in the Holy Roman Empire and Swiss Confederation, c. 1400-c.1600." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1999.
    Bush, Keith Andrew. "Portals of Discovery: Maurice Blanchot—Jose Lezama Lima—Reinaldo Arenas." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1983.
    Camhi, Leslie Ellen. "Prisoners of Gender: Hysteria, Psychoanalysis and Literature in Fin-de-siecle Culture." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1991.
    Cohen, Thomas D. "Hyperbaton: Essays in Dialogue, and the Materiality of Inscription: Plato, Bakhtin, Melville." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1987.
    Cullis, Tara Elizabeth. "Literature of Rupture: Science and Literature in the Twentieth Century." PhD dissertation, University of Wisconsin, 1983.
    Davis, Linette Bua. "Vantage Points: The Political Service of Mimesis in Narratives of Vision." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1999.
    Delogu, Christopher Jon. "Reading the Fantastic—Chance Encounters with Shakespeare, Baudelaire, Saussure, and Blanchot." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1991.
    Drake, Alfred James. "'Bully Boy with No Glass Eye:'" Oscar Wilde as Socialist." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1997.
    Drever, Tiffany Ellen. "Medical Mysteries: Dragging the Victorian Hysteric Into the Machine Age," PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1998.
    Dunkelsbuhler, Ulrike. "Kritik der Rahmen-Vernunft: Parergon-Versionen nach Kant und Derrida." PhD dissertation, 1989.
    Edmundson, Mark. "Towards Reading Freud: Representations of Crisis in Keats, Wordsworth, Emerson, Whitman & Freud." PhD dissertation, University of Virginia.
    Fosso, Kurt O. "'The Living and the Dead:' Death and Community in William Wordsworth's Early Poems, 1787-1797." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1993.
    Ginsburg, Michal Peled. "Free Indirect Discourse Theme and Narrative Voice in Flaubert, George Eliot, and Verga". PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1977.
    Giudice, Francesco. "'Letture Dell'illeggibile' Gli Yale critics." PhD dissertation, Universita Degli Studi Di Trieste, 1994-5.
    Gordon, Paul H. "The Critical Double Figurative Meaning in Protagoras, James, and Rafka." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1984.
    Heacox, Thomas. "Very Dear Person, Very Dear Place: Love in the Fiction of E.M. Forster." PhD dissertation, Johns Hopkins University, 1975.
    Heckleman, Ronald J. "'Promyse that is Dette:' Toward a Rhetoric and History of Literary Promising." PhD dissertation, Claremont Graduate School, 1985.
    Hensley, David Clyde. "The Philosophy of Samuel Richardson." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1989.
    Holt, Fran Browder. "Deconstruction from Derrida to Yale." PhD dissertation, Georgia State University, 1981.
    Homans, Margaret Beverly. "Studies in the Feminine Poetic Imagination: Dorothy Wordsworth, Emily Bronte, and Emily Dickinson." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1978.
    Ingraffia, Brian D. "Taking Captive or Being Taken Captive? Heidegger, Derrida, and the De(con)struction of the Theological Character of Metaphysics." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine.
    Kendrick, Walter Mayforth. "The Vanishing Word: Anthony Trollope, Robert Browning, and the Sensation Novel of the 1860’s." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1975.
    Klein, Scott Warren. "Opposition and Representation: The Fictions of Wyndham Lewis and James Joyce." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1990.
    Lee, Il-Hwan. "The Drama of Desire: the Cantos of Ezra Pound." PhD dissertation, 1989.
    Lee, William Lamborn. "Interpreting Insane Characters in King Lear, the Duchess of Malfi, Rasselas, Maud, and As I Lay Dying: Toward a Theory." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1980.
    Mahar, Margaret Anne. "The Shape of a History: Eliot, Hardy, and Lawrence." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1975.
    Matrisciano, Jane Louise. "Bernard Shaw’s Back to Methuselah: The Iconography of Revaluation." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1977.
    Maxwell, David Victor. "The Keys to the Self: Rhetorics of Self-Development in Franklin, de Man, Emerson, and Melville." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1999.
    McCausland, Elizabeth Darrow. "Circling the City: Fantasies of Order in Victorian Urban Literature." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1997.
    Meisel, Perry Hal. "Virginia Woolf: A Poetics of Character." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1975.
    Obodiac, Erin. "Technics and the Sublime." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 2007.
    Overmeer, Rene Roelof. "Wreading and Riting: Notes on the Poetry-Commentary Relationship." PhD dissertation, Universite de Lausanne, 1991.
    Owen, Wendy Emerson. "'A Riddle in Nine Syllables:" Female Creativity in the Poetry of Sylvia Plath.” PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1985.
    Postlethwaite, Diana Lynn. "The Novelist as a Woman of Science: George Eliot and Contemporary Psychology." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1975.
    Potolsky, Matthew D. "Teaching Decadence: Aestheticism and the Ends of Education in Gautier, Masoch, and Pater." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1997.
    Pugliese, Joseph. "Hawthorne Pro Nietzsche: A Nietzschean Revaluation of the Hawthorne Romances." PhD dissertation, University of Sydney, 1992.
    Readings, W.J. "The Restoration and the Fall of Language: The Search for Meaning in the Poetry of Marvell and Milton." PhD dissertation, Balliol College, 1985.
    Riquelme, John Paul. "Modes of Consciousness in James Joyce’s Ulysses." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1977.
    Romano, John Gerald. "Dickens and the Form of the Realist Novel." PhD dissertation, Yale University.
    Saldívar, Ramón. "Reading and Rhetoric: Studies in the Interpretation of Modern Narrative. PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1976.
    Sedgwick, Eve Kosofsky. "The Coherence of Gothic Coventions." PhD dissertation, Yale University 1975.
    Shusterman, Alan Jay. "Jewels Set in Iron Acting and Seeing in Joseph Conrad's Middle Fiction." PhD dissertation, The University of Chicago, 1977.
    Smirlock, Daniel. "Rough Truth: Realism and the Form of George Meredith's Fiction.” PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1979.
    Smith, Jeremy Mark. "Blank Verse Sympathy: Abstraction, Time, and Poetic Form in William Wordsworth's two-part Prelude." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1998.
    Spradley, Dana Lloyd. "Rewiting the Respublica: The Politics of Literary Figuration in More's Utopia, Shakespeare’s Pericles, and Milton’s Aeropagitica." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1989.
    Sullivan, Mary Petrus, R.S.M., "The Descriptive Style of Joseph Conrad." PhD dissertation, The University of Notre Dame, 1964.
    Thompson, David Owen. "Fiction and the Forms of Community: Strauss, Feuerbach, and George Eliot." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1979.
    Vejdovsky, Boris. "Ideas of Order: Ethics and Topos in American Literature." PhD dissertation, Universite de Lausanne, 1997.
    Van Oort, Richard. "The Origin and Fuction of the Aesthetic Sign." PhD dissertation, University of California Irvine, 2002.
    Venturino, Steven. "Critical Baggage: Traveling Theory in China, Tibet, and the Transnational Academy." PhD dissertation, Loyola University Chicago, 2000.
    Wihl, Gary Sheldon. "'Truth in Mosaic:' Studies in Ruskin's Modern Painters and Related Works." PhD dissertation, Yale University, 1983.
    Wilkins, Peter Duncan. "Finite Nations, Finite Selves: The Failure of Apocalypse in North American Fiction." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 1997.
    Wolfs, R. "Dekonstruktieve Kritiek een onaangename vertroebeling?" PhD dissertation, Universiteit van Amsterdam, 1984.
    Zeigler, James. "America Studies: Political Life at the End of Ideology." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 2004.
    Ziemer, Gerhard Henry. "Oscar Wilde and the Aesthetic, Sexual, and Moral Que(e)rying of Identity." PhD dissertation, University of California, Irvine, 2000.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Miller, J. Hillis (Joseph Hillis), 1928-
    University of California, Irvine. -- Faculty -- Archives
    Critical theory -- Archives.
    Critical theory -- Study and teaching (Higher) -- California -- Irvine
    Literary critics.