Finding Aid for the Collection of Material about the Processes of Publishing and Self-Publishing, Including Samizdat, 1925-1974
Processed by Jesse Erickson in the Center for Primary Research and Training (CFPRT), with assistance from Megan Hahn Fraser, September 2011; machine-readable finding aid created by Caroline Cubé.
UCLA Library Special Collections© 2012
Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.
Title: Collection of Material about the Processes of Publishing and Self-Publishing, Including Samizdat
Date (inclusive): 1925-1974
Collection number: 1398
Extent: 4 boxes (2 linear ft.)
Abstract: Collection consists of examples of Famous Writers School publications, typescript galley proofs, and Russian samizdat.
Language: Finding aid is written in English.
Language of the Material: Materials are in English and Russian.
Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library Special Collections.
Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact UCLA Library Special Collections for paging information.
Open for research. STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact UCLA Library Special Collections for paging information.
Property rights to the physical object belong to the UC Regents. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. 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.
Processed by Jesse Erickson in the Center for Primary Research and Training (CFPRT), with assistance from Megan Hahn Fraser, September 2011.
[Identification of item], Collection of Material about the Processes of Publishing and Self-Publishing, Including Samizdat (Collection Number 1398). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.
Founded by publisher Bennett Cerf with Gordon Carroll and Albert Dorne in 1961, the Famous Writers School is a correspondence-based instructional program designed to provide amateur writers with the techniques and skills needed to develop a successful career as professional writer. The school prospered for close to a decade as its enrollment steadily rose, causing a notable increase in tuition revenues during the late 1960s. However, both the quality and the effectiveness of the original school were scrutinized by Jessica Mitford in a 1970 exposé piece published in the Atlantic Monthly that portrayed the school's business practices as scandalous. Subsequent to the publication of the Mitford article, the school's previously rising stock rapidly plummeted until it filed for bankruptcy in 1972.
Collection consists primarily of instructional publications and materials from the Famous Writers School correspondence program. Also included in the collection are examples of typescript manuscripts and galley proofs illustrating different stages in the publication process. There is also a small number of samizdat, a type of Russian book, commonly a reproduction of a banned or censored publication, often handmade with inexpensive materials and circulated privately without government authorization.
Arranged according to the content and format of the materials.
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Publishers and publishing.