Scope and Content
Title: Carl R. Rogers Collection,
Date (inclusive): 1902-1990
Collection number: HPA Mss 32
Rogers, Carl R.
Center for the Studies of the Person
Extent: 52 manuscript boxes, two oversize boxes, approximately 350 audiovisual items; approximately 35 linear feet
University of California, Santa Barbara. Library. Dept. of Special Collections
Shelf location: For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the library's online catalog.
The Carl R. Rogers Collection is comprised of Rogers's own papers, donated by him to the Humanistic Psychology Archives in
1986 and by his daughter Natalie after his death in 1987; and material related to Rogers and his associates donated by the
Center for the Studies of the Person between 1993 and 1996.
All materials in the Diaries Series are restricted from use.
Copyright resides with donor.
[Identification of item], Carl R. Rogers Collection, HPA Mss 32, Department of Special Collections, University Libraries,
University of California, Santa Barbara.
Rogers, Carl R. (Carl Ransom), 1902-
Center for Studies of the Person (La Jolla, Calif.).
Carl Ransom Rogers (1902-1987) was a psychologist and psychotherapist who initiated what Abraham Maslow later called the "third
force" of psychology, following the behaviorism of Pavlov (and later B. F. Skinner) and Freudian psychoanalysis. This "third
force" of humanistic psychology has been so closely identified with Rogers that it is often called Rogerian, a term its namesake
objected to. His innovation was to treat clients as if they were essentially healthy, and he felt that growth would occur
when a non-judgmental, non-directive (later, "client-centered") therapist created a warm, accepting environment to nurture
the client and allow self-knowledge and self-acceptance to occur. Rogers is considered by many to be the most influential
psychologist after Freud.
Rogers was born in Chicago, Illinois, and grew up in Oak Park and on a farm in the city's outskirts. His early life was a
blend of staunch Christianity, a heavy emphasis on education, and a scientifically-oriented interest in farming. In college
at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, he changed his major from agriculture to history with an intent to enter the ministry
after an influential trip to China with the World Student Christian Federation, a trip which, ironically, also led Rogers
to question mainstream Christianity. After graduation, he married Helen Elliott, following an engagement of nearly two years.
The two moved to New York, where Rogers enrolled in the liberal, intellectually-focused Union Theological Seminary. After
being introduced to work in clinical psychology here, however, he changed his career path once again and entered Columbia
University's Teachers College.
While completing his Ph.D. at Columbia and for several years thereafter, Rogers worked at the Rochester Society for the Prevention
of Cruelty to Children (RSPCC) as a child psychologist. It was during this time that he wrote his first monograph,
The Clinical Treatment of the Problem Child, a work that brought him enough notice to be offered a full professorship at Ohio State University. While at Ohio, Rogers
Counseling and Psychotherapy, the book that summarized his own clinical experience while providing the foundation for nondirective therapy, and established
the first supervised counseling practicum within an academic psychology department. In addition, it was during this time that
he became the first therapist to record sessions with clients and offer them for study. All of this early work led to an offer
by the University of Chicago for Rogers to establish a counseling center there.
Rogers spent twelve years at the University of Chicago, during which he developed the counseling center, served as president
of the American Psychologists Association, and published
Client-Centered Therapy, wherein he solidified his particular approach to therapy while shifting farther away from the traditional patient-therapist
dichotomy. In Rogers's approach, the therapist frees the client from whatever impediments are keeping him or her from normal
psychological growth, rather than curing the client of a previously-diagnosed neurosis or psychosis.
From 1957 to 1963, Rogers held a joint appointment as professor in both psychology and psychiatry at the University of Wisconsin,
with an initial idea to integrate research and training within psychology , psychiatry, and social work. He later referred
to this period as "the most painful and anguished episode in my whole professional life." Rogers found the effort frustrating,
and ultimately resigned from the psychology department. This period did, however, see the publication of
On Becoming a Person, Rogers's popular breakthrough. But after seven years in Wisconsin, Rogers had grown disillusioned with university life,
and at sixty-two he and Helen moved to Southern California to join staff of the Western Behavioral Studies Institute in La
Jolla, which had been founded by Richard Farson, a former student of Rogers's at Wisconsin. The WBSI was a loosely-structured
research and training organization under which staff members formed their own programs and generated their own revenues. In
its success, however, the looseness eventually became formalized and rigid, a direction with which Rogers felt uncomfortable.
In 1968, along with several colleagues and literally overnight, Rogers left WBSI to form the Center for the Studies of the
Person along the original lines of WBSI, but with a commitment to maintaining the democracy and informailty that they felt
had been lost. Indeed, the CSP was dubbed a "nonorganization," run by a "non-director." Under the umbrella of the CSP, Rogers
worked with "encounter groups" of individuals as well as larger organizations such as companies and schools. He published
Carl Rogers on Encounter Groupsin 1970, and
Carl Rogers on Personal Powerin 1977. Rogers spent the last several years of his life traveling extensively to promote his Person-Centered Approach in
workshops as far-reaching as "The Central America Challenge," an international meeting of sixty-five leaders from seventeen
Rogers died on Wednesday, February 4, 1987, of cardiac arrest following hospitalization for a broken hip, after having been
a widower for nearly eight years.
DeCarvalho, Roy José.
The Founders of Humanistic Psychology. New York: Praeger, 1991.
Kirschenbaum, Howard. "Carl Rogers." In
Positive Regard: Carl Rogers and Other Notables He Influenced, ed. Melvin M. Suhd, 1-102. Palo Alto, California: Science and Behavior Books, 1995.
On Becoming Carl Rogers. New York: Delacorte Press, 1979.
Carl R. Rogers Collection, HPA Mss 32, Department of Special Collections, University Libraries, University of California,
|8 Jan 1902
||Born in Chicago, Illinois
||Enters agriculture program at University of Wisconsin-Madison
|Feb - Aug 1922
||Trip to the Far East
|22 Oct 1922
||Becomes engaged to Helen Elliott
|23 Jun 1924
||Receives BA in History from University of Wisconsin-Madison
|28 Aug 1924
||Marries Helen Elliott
||Enrolls in liberal Union Theological Seminary, New York City
||Serves as visiting pastor in Dorset, Vermont
||Leaves Union for Columbia University Teachers College
|17 Mar 1926
||David Elliott Rogers born
|1 Jun 1927
||Recieves MA from Columbia University Teachers College
||Joins Rochester Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (RSPCC) as child psychologist
|9 Oct 1928
||Natalie Rogers born
||Made director of the Child Study Department, RSPCC
|20 Mar 1931
||Receives doctorate from Columbia University Teachers College
The Clinical Treatment of the Problem Childis published
||Accepts position at Ohio State University as clinical psychologist and full professor
|11 Dec 1940
||Client-centered therapy is "born" as Rogers addresses the University of Minnesota's psychological honors society
Counseling and Psychotherapyis published
||Moves to the University of Chicago to start counseling center
||Serves as president of the American Psychological Association (APA)
Client-Centered Therapyis published
||Receives the APA's first Distinguished Contribution Award
||Accepts appointment at University of Wisconsin--Madison in psychiatry and psychology
On Becoming a Personis published
||Moves to La Jolla, California, to join staff of the Western Behavioral Studies Institute (WBSI)
||With several WBSI colleagues, leaves to form the Center for the Studies of the Person (CSP)
||Works with "encounter groups," larger organizations
Carl Rogers on Encounter Groupsis published
Carl Rogers on Personal Power
||Travels extensively to promote his Person-Centered Approach in workshops
|29 March 1979
||Helen Rogers dies
|30 Jan 1987
||Nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by Congressman Jim Bates
|4 Feb 1987
||Dies in La Jolla, California
Scope and Content
The Carl R. Rogers Collection contains select papers of Carl R. Rogers; records from his association with the Center for the
Studies of the Person, a group he co-founded; and reprint articles from the Carl Rogers Memorial Library. There is an extensive
audio collection of Rogers's and other CSP members' lectures and seminars; this series is currently undergoing preservation
and reformatting work in order to be made more accessible. The bulk of the collection is from the years 1955-1989. Although
written materials by Rogers form only a small part of the Rogers Collection, they are significant in the insight about Rogers's
early thoughts that they allow. The Library of Congress, in Washington, DC, holds 59.2 linear feet of Rogers's personal and
The collection has been arranged and described at the folder level. Folder dates within the container list were based on examination
of the materials. Other folder-level information was taken from the original folder title, or, in the case of information
enclosed in square brackets, supplied by the processor based on information found within the folder.
Removed or Separated Material
The Library of Congress holds additional papers of Carl R. Rogers.