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Finding Aid for the Peter H. Lee Collection of Books and Letters from Wallace Stevens, 1940-1963
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Collection Details
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  • Descriptive Summary
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Peter H. Lee Collection of Books and Letters from Wallace Stevens,
    Date (inclusive): 1940-1963
    Collection number: 146
    Creator: Lee, Peter H., 1929-
    Extent: 1 half box (.25 linear ft.)
    Abstract: Collection consists of letters from Wallace Stevens to Peter H. Lee, and books from Lee's collection by Wallace Stevens, T.S. Eliot, Robert Frost, and Robert Lowell.
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Department of 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 the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.


    Peter H. Lee (1929-) was born in Seoul, Korea. He received his B.A. from the College of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, and his M.A. from Yale in 1953. Lee went on to study various languages and comparative literatures at universities in Switzerland, Italy, England and Munich, Germany, where he earned his Ph.D. from Ludwig-Maximilian University in 1958. After holding positions at Columbia, Hawaii, and UC Berkeley, Lee came to UCLA in 1987 to begin his distinguished teaching career in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures as a professor of Korean and comparative literature. Professor Lee is an academic pioneer, credited with single-handedly developing the field of Korean literature, especially in a comparative context, in the West. He is the author of 16 books and numerous articles.

    Scope and Content

    The collection consists of letters from Wallace Stevens to Peter H. Lee. In early 1951, while Lee was studying at the College of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, he sent Stevens some poems. A friendship developed between the poet and the young Korean scholar, resulting in a rich body of correspondence that developed over a period of several years (see George S. Lensing, Wallace Stevens: A Poet's Growth, pp.239-240). The 19 letters in this collection contain Stevens' insightful reflections on poetry and scholarship in general, and document his friendship with Lee. The collection also contains 12 books from Lee's personal collection: seven by Wallace Stevens (two of which are inscribed to Lee by the author), three by T.S. Eliot, and one each by both Robert Frost and Robert Lowell. The finding aid includes complete citations for the books; in addition, full catalog records for these books can be found in the UCLA Library online catalog by performing a keyword search on the phrase “Peter H. Lee collection of books.”

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.


    Lee, Peter H., 1929- --Archives.
    College teachers--United States--Archival resources.
    Literature teachers--United States--Archival resources.
    Lee, Peter H., 1929- --Correspondence.
    Stevens, Wallace, 1879-1955--Correspondence.