23 August 2007

Sylvia Plath collections: Woodberry Poetry Room recorded archives

The Woodberry Poetry Room in Harvard's Lamont Library, houses an vast collection of audio recordings. Plath and Hughes both read during their time in Massachusetts from 1957-1959. Plath read at the Woodberry on 22 February 1959. Below is information about the recorded archives of the Woodberry Poetry Room. They have a website, which is here.

Woodberry Poetry Room recorded archives, 1930-1986

Archival Material ca. 1200 audio tapes and phonograph records.

Consists of recordings of readings chiefly by American and English poets given at Harvard University. As of 1986 there were approximately 1200 readings in the Woodberry recorded archives, and about 40 new readings are added every year. Beginning in 1985 video tapes of readings were added to the collection.

The Woodberry Poetry Room at Harvard was established in honor of Professor George Edward Woodberry. It was opened in 1931 in Widener Library and was moved in 1949 to Lamont Library. From the beginning, poetry readings, funded by the Morris Gray Fund, were given in the Woodberry Room. The Poetry Room now has assumed responsibility for recording all poetry readings given at Harvard. These include, in addition to those funded by the Morris Gray Fund (administered since 1939 by the English Department), the Corliss Lamont Poetry Reading Series, readings funded by the Ellen Sitgreaves Vail Motter Fund of Radcliffe College, readings given under the auspices of the Harvard Vocarium, and readings sponsored by the Poetry Room itself.

Copies of recordings will be made only with the written permission of the author or the author's estate. Unpublished finding aid available in repository.

Plath read the following poems.

1.) Full Fathom Five
2.) Departure
3.) I Want, I Want
4.) Green Rock, Winthrop Bay
5.) On the Decline of Oracles
6.) Lorelei
7.) Moonrise
8.) Watercolor of Grandchester Meadows
9.) The Bull of Bendylaw
0.) Frog Autumn
11.) The Hermit at Outermost House
12.) The Goring
13.) Ouija
14.) Snakecharmer
15.) The Beggar of Benidorm Market
16.) Sculptor
17.) Point Shirley

And, according to this finding aid, The Woodberry Poetry Room also has a typescript with autograph manuscript annotions of Plath's poem 'Tulips'.

The Houghton Library at Harvard holds some other drafts of 'Tulips' in their collection. I wrote about this collection in June, you can read it here.

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Publications & Acknowledgements

  • BBC Four.A Poet's Guide to Britain: Sylvia Plath. London: BBC Four, 2009. (Acknowledged in)
  • Biography: Sylvia Plath. New York: A & E Television Networks, 2005. (Photographs used)
  • Connell, Elaine. Sylvia Plath: Killing the angel in the house. 2d ed. Hebden Bridge: Pennine Pens, 1998. (Acknowledged in)
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives." Plath Profiles 2. Summer 2009: 183-208.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives, Redux." Plath Profiles 3. Summer 2010: 232-246.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives 3." Plath Profiles 4. Summer 2011: 119-138.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives 4: Looking for New England." Plath Profiles 5. Summer 2012: 11-56.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives 5: Reanimating the Past." Plath Profiles 6. Summer 2013: 27-62.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. These Ghostly Archives: The Unearthing of Sylvia Plath. Oxford: Fonthill, 2017. Forthcoming.
  • Death Be Not Proud: The Graves of Poets. New York: Poets.org. (Photographs used)
  • Doel, Irralie, Lena Friesen and Peter K. Steinberg. "An Unacknowledged Publication by Sylvia Plath." Notes & Queries 56:3. September 2009: 428-430.
  • Gill, Jo. "Sylvia Plath in the South West." University of Exeter Centre for South West Writing, 2008. (Photograph used)
  • Elements of Literature, Third Course. Austin, Tex. : Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 2009. (Photograph used)
  • Helle, Anita Plath. The Unraveling Archive: Essays on Sylvia Plath. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2007. (Photographs used, acknowledged in)
  • Helle, Anita. "Lessons from the Archive: Sylvia Plath and the Politics of Memory". Feminist Studies 31:3. Fall 2005: 631-652.. (Acknowledged in)
  • Holden, Constance. "Sad Poets' Society." Science Magazine. 27 July 2008. (Photograph used)
  • Making Trouble: Three Generations of Funny Jewish Women, Motion Picture. Directed by Rachel Talbot. Brookline (Mass.): Jewish Women's Archive, 2007. (Photograph used)
  • Plath, Sylvia, and Karen V. Kukil. The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath, 1950-1962. New York: Anchor Books, 2000. (Acknowledged in)
  • Plath, Sylvia, and Peter K. Steinberg and Karen V. Kukil (eds.). The Letters of Sylvia Plath. London: Faber, 2017. Forthcoming.
  • Plath, Sylvia. Glassklokken. Oslo: De norske Bokklubbene, 2004. (Photograph used on cover)
  • Reiff, Raychel Haugrud. Sylvia Plath: The Bell Jar and Poems (Writers and Their Works). Marshall Cavendish Children's Books, 2008.. (Images provided)
  • Steinberg, Peter K. Sylvia Plath (Great Writers). Philadelphia: Chelsea House Publishers, 2004.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "'I Should Be Loving This': Sylvia Plath's 'The Perfect Place' and The Bell Jar." Plath Profiles 1. Summer 2008: 253-262.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Sylvia Plath." The Spoken Word: Sylvia Plath. London: British Library, 2010.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "'They Had to Call and Call': The Search for Sylvia Plath." Plath Profiles 3. Summer 2010: 106-132.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "This is a Celebration: A Festschrift for The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath." Plath Profiles 3 Supplement. Fall 2010: 3-14.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "A Perfectly Beautiful Time: Sylvia Plath at Camp Helen Storrow." Plath Profiles 4. Summer 2011: 149-166.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Proof of Plath." Fine Books & Collections 9:2. Spring 2011: 11-12.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Textual Variations in The Bell Jar Publications." Plath Profiles 5. Summer 2012.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Writing Life" [Introduction]. Sylvia Plath in Devon: A Year's Turning. Stroud, Eng.: Fonthill Media, 2014.

Interviews