Texas Archival Resources Online

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Scope and Contents

Restrictions

Related Material

Administrative Information

Description of Series

Series I. Works, 1958-1996

Series II. Career Related Materials, 1962-1996

University of Texas, Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center

Anita Desai:

A Preliminary Inventory of Her Papers in the Manuscript Collection at the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center



Creator: Desai, Anita, 1937-
Title: Anita Desai Papers
Dates: 1958-1996
Abstract: Manuscripts for Anita Desai's published works make up a significant portion of this collection, which also includes materials concerning public appearances, awards, and writings about her works.
Extent: 18 boxes, 3 oversize boxes (10 linear feet)
Language: English, French, Italian, and Urdu
Repository: The University of Texas at Austin, Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center

Scope and Contents

Manuscripts for Anita Desai's published works make up a significant portion of this collection, which also includes materials concerning public appearances, awards, and writings about her works. The collection is organized into two series: I. Works, 1958-1996; and II. Career Related Materials, 1962-1996.

The Works Series is divided into four subseries: A. Major Works, B. Short Stories, C. Introductions and Prefaces, and D. Articles and Reviews, with items within the subseries arranged alphabetically by title. Included are manuscripts and typescripts in various stages of editing and revision, such as Desai’s award-winning novels Baumgartner’s Bombay, Fire on the Mountain, Clear Light of Day and In Custody, the latter two of which were short-listed for the Booker Prize in 1980 and 1984, respectively. In Custody was also made into a film by Merchant Ivory Productions in 1993. The short stories include works published as early as 1958, preceding her first novel by several years. Desai’s work on introductions for books by authors from Anne Brontë to Salman Rushdie and several articles addressing the treatment of women and children around the world are also present. Correspondence directly related to her works has been maintained with the respective work throughout the series and subsequently arranged alphabetically by author.

The Career Related Material is also divided into four subseries: A. Speeches, Interviews, Lectures, and Radio; B. Honors and Public Appearances; C. Articles and Reviews of Desai; and D. Correspondence, Finances, and Other Papers. Included are materials from the PEN International Writer's Day conference and the Flair Symposium, both from 1994. Present as well are her honorary degrees, in addition to publicity materials from her awards, including the Royal Society of Literature Award in 1977, and clippings on her works and career from around the world. Correspondence in this series is more general and does not address any single work, and includes letters between Desai and her first English publisher, Peter Owen. Her royalty statements and tax information are also present along with subsequent correspondence.

The collection does not contain materials related to Desai's personal life or her career as a professor.

Return to the Table of Contents


Restrictions

Access:

Open for research

Return to the Table of Contents


Related Material

Additional Desai materials at the Ransom Center are present in the Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. Records and the Peter Owen Ltd. Records.

Return to the Table of Contents


Administrative Information

Acquisition:

Purchases, 1989-1997 (R11751, R12773, R13947)

Processed by:

Jonathan Reynolds, 2007

Return to the Table of Contents


Folder List

 

Series I. Works, 1958-1996

Subseries A. Major Works, 1965-1995
Box Folder
1 Baumgartner's Bombay (1988)
1-2 Handwritten drafts
3-4 Typescript with author's revisions
5-6 Typescripts
* Page proofs with corrections (*removed to oversize box 21)
Box Folder
2 1 Notes
2 Dust jacket proof
3 Screenplay by Gary Dvorkin
4 Correspondence
Bye-Bye, Blackbird (1968; a.k.a. "O England's Green and Grisly Land," a.k.a. "Indians in London")
5 1st handwritten draft
6 Handwritten draft with notes
7 Typescript
8 Typescript with notes
9 Dust jacket proof
10 Correspondence
11 Cat on a Houseboat (1976), handwritten draft, typescript, and correspondence
Clear Light of Day (1980) (a.k.a. "Summer Noon Sun")
12 Handwritten draft in 5 notebooks
Box Folder
3 1 Handwritten draft
2 Typescript
3 Dust jacket proof
4-5 Correspondence
Cry, the Peacock (1963)
6 Handwritten draft
7 Dust jacket proof
8 Correspondence
Fire on the Mountain (1977)
9 Notes
10 Handwritten draft
Box Folder
4 1 Handwritten draft in a notebook; also contains "2nd drafts of poems"
2 2 typescripts
3 Page proofs with revisions
4 Dust jacket proofs (1 for Swedish edition)
5-6 Correspondence
Games at Twilight and Other Stories (1978)
7 "Games at Twilight," handwritten draft and 3 typescripts
7 "Private Tuition by Mr. Bose," handwritten draft, 4 typescripts, published pages from Indian Literature, and clipping from The Telegraph, 11 July 1992
7 "Studies in the Park," 2 handwritten drafts and 5 typescripts
7 "Surface Textures," handwritten draft, 6 typescripts, and a screenplay
7 "Sale," 5 typescripts
7 "Pineapple Cake," 2 handwritten drafts and 3 typescripts
8 "The Accompanist," 2 handwritten drafts, 5 typescripts, and French version in Le Serpent a Plumes, Autumn 1991
8 "A Devoted Son," 2 handwritten drafts and 6 typescripts
8 "The Farewell Party," 2 handwritten drafts and 5 typescripts
8 "Pigeons at Daybreak," 2 handwritten drafts and 4 typescripts
8 "Scholar and Gypsy," 3 handwritten drafts and 2 typescripts
9 Notes and dust jacket proofs
10 Correspondence
Box Folder
5 In Custody (1984)
1 Handwritten draft with notes
2-3 2 typescripts with revisions
4 Notes for revisions
5 Typescript
6 Audio-book version
7 Dust jacket proofs
Screenplay (1993)
Film treatment
8 Handwritten and typescript draft
9 Typescript with notes
Box Folder
6 1 Edited typescript, combination of drafts 1 and 2 with notes
2 Draft 3 typescript
Urdu version, typescript
3 Draft 1
4 Draft 2
5 2 subtitles typescripts
6 Subtitles typescript with notes
7 Subtitles typescript with handwritten Urdu translation
8 2 synopses
9 Correspondence
Box Folder
7 Journey to Ithaca (1995)
1 Notes, articles, clippings, and draft fragments
2 Notes in calendar
3 Handwritten draft in 3 notebooks
4-5 Typescript with revisions
6 Revised typescript
Box Folder
8 1 Revised typescript (continued)
2 Notes for revisions
3* Dust jacket proofs (*oversize removed to box 19)
4 Correspondence
The Peacock Garden (1974)
5 Handwritten draft
6 3 typescripts of earlier draft
7 Typescript of later draft
8* Illustrations and dust jacket proofs (*oversize removed to box 21)
9 Correspondence
The Village by the Sea (1982) (a.k.a. "Coconut Days")
10 Notes and map
11 Handwritten draft
12 Typescript with notes
13 BBC broadcast read by Saeed Jaffrey
14 Excerpt for Provincial Reviews Exam
Box Folder
9 1 Dust jacket proof
2-3 Correspondence
Screenplay
Film treatment
4 1st handwritten draft
5 2nd handwritten draft and typescript
6 Notes on production
7 Original scripts of the 6 episodes
8 Correspondence
Voices in the City (1965)
9 "Abandoned" handwritten draft
10 1st handwritten draft
11 2nd handwritten draft
12 Dust jacket proof
13 Correspondence
Box Folder
10 Where Shall We Go This Summer? (1975)
1 1st handwritten draft
2 2nd handwritten draft
3 2 typescripts
4 Dust jacket proof
5 Correspondence
Subseries B. Short Stories, 1958-1993
6 "After the Wedding," typescript
6 "Bound Feet" (1968), 2 handwritten drafts
6 "A Day in an Ashram," handwritten draft and research material
6 "Descent from the Roof-top" (1970), handwritten draft and 2 typescripts
6 "An Examination" (1960), 3 typescripts
6 "Frozen in Froya" (1993), notes, 2 handwritten drafts, typescript, and published French version
7 "Ghost House" (1961), handwritten draft and 7 typescripts
7 "Grandmother" (1960), handwritten draft
7 "How Gentle is the Mist" (1958), 3 typescripts
7 "Mr. Bose's Private Bliss" (1961), handwritten draft and 7 typescripts of 3 drafts
7 "Mr. Bose's Private Prayer" (1969), handwritten draft and 6 typescripts
7 "Poetry Reading in Bombay," typescript
7 "The Prisoner" (1974), 2 handwritten drafts and 5 typescripts
7 "The Red Cross Plane," 2 handwritten drafts and 3 typescripts
7 "Rohan's Magic Pictures," 2 handwritten drafts, 2 typescripts, and correspondence
8 "The Sun, the River, and a _____ Night," handwritten draft
8 "Threatened" (1974), 2 handwritten drafts and 3 typescripts
8 "To Sell a Picture" (1961), 2 handwritten drafts
8 Untitled, 4 handwritten drafts
8 Notes and fragments; lists of stories and publishers; and correspondence
Subseries C. Introductions and Prefaces, 1985-1996
9* Agnes Grey, by Anne Brontë (1990 edition), handwritten draft, typescript, and correspondence (*page proofs removed to oversize box 21)
10 Eye to Eye, edited by Vanessa Baird (1996), notes, handwritten draft, typescript with revisions, and typescript of final draft
11 The Home and the World, by Rabindranath Tagore (1985 edition), notes, handwritten draft, and typescript
12 Midnight's Children, by Salman Rushdie (1995 edition), notes, 2 handwritten drafts, 2 typescripts, and correspondence
13 Noon in Calcutta, edited by Krishna Dutta and Andrew Robinson (1992), notes, handwritten draft, 3 typescripts, correspondence, and a dust jacket proof
Box Folder
11 1 The Post Office, by Rabindranath Tagore (1996 edition), notes, 2 handwritten drafts, typescript, copy of play, and correspondence with illustrations for publication
2 The Quilt and Other Stories, by Ismat Chughtai (1994 edition), notes, early and later handwritten drafts, typescript, and correspondence with a book catalog
3 Rabindranath Tagore: Selected Short Stories, translated by Krishna Dutta and Mary Lago (1991), 2 handwritten drafts, 3 typescripts, and a dust jacket proof
4 Sunlight on a Broken Column, by Attia Husain (1988 edition), 2 handwritten drafts, typescript, and correspondence
5 The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, by Anne Brontë (1991 edition), handwritten draft and typescript
6 The Turkish Embassy Letters, by Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, edited by Malcolm Jack (1993), notes on notepad, 3 handwritten drafts, typescript, correspondence, and page proofs with revisions
Subseries D. Articles and Reviews by Desai, 1960-1996
Articles, 1969-1996
7 A-H
8 I-Z
9-10 "In Manggis," for UNICEF: State of the World's Children 1994, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd handwritten drafts, 4 typescripts, notes, correspondence, and support material
11 "In Quest of Delhi’s Past" (published as "Echoes of a Princely Past in a Many Layered City") for the New York Times (1989), 3 handwritten drafts, 2 typescripts, 2 computer printouts, and notes
Box Folder
12 1 "Raj Quartet," for the New Republic (1985), 3 handwritten drafts, correspondence, and research materials
2 "Rajiv Gandhi," for LIFE (1985), notes, 3 handwritten drafts, and a profile of Gandhi
3 "Women in Norway," for Women: A World Report (1985), 2 handwritten drafts, typescript, support material, and correspondence
4 Untitled, 6 handwritten drafts
Reviews, 1960-1996
5 Notes for various reviews on a pad
6 A-E
7 F-I
8 J-R
Box Folder
13 1 S-Z
2 Women Writing in India, Vol. 1, edited by Susie Thara and K. Lalita, and Truth Tales, edited by Kalie (1991), 3 handwritten drafts, 3 typescripts, 3 galley proofs, notes, and correspondence
3 Women Writing in India, Vol. 2, edited by Susie Thara and K. Lalita (1993), handwritten draft, 2 typescripts, galley proof, and correspondence

Return to the Table of Contents




 

Series II. Career Related Materials, 1962-1996

Subseries A. Speeches, Interviews, Lectures, and Radio, 1982-1995
Box Folder
13 4 Acceptance speeches. Hadassah Magazine Prize, 1988, handwritten draft; University of North London Honorary Degree, 1995, handwritten draft, correspondence, and program
5 Interview by Feroza Jussawalla, October 1990, typescript and correspondence
Lectures
6 Various, handwritten drafts and typescripts
7 Edinburgh Book Festival, 1983, 2 typescripts, correspondence, and clippings
8 Flair Symposium, November 1994, handwritten draft, correspondence, and conference materials
9 International Parliament of Writers, September 1994, typescript, conference materials, invitation from Portuguese President Mario Soares, and clippings
10 Linea d'Ombra Associazione Italo-Britannica, March 1990. "Freedom and Suppression," 2 handwritten drafts and typescript; "Wealth and Poverty," typescript; Correspondence and clippings in Italian
11 Neil Gunn International Fellowship, 1994, 3 handwritten drafts, 2 typescripts, correspondence, conference materials, photographs, and clippings
12 PEN International Writer's Day, March 1994, 2 handwritten drafts, typescript, notes, and conference materials
Box Folder
14 1 UNESCO Nordic Workshop, November 1982, typescript, correspondence and photographs, conference materials, and open letter to the President of Kenya about censorship
2 Version Française, October 1991, 2 handwritten drafts, conference material, and invitation from French President François Mitterand
3 Radio broadcasts, handwritten drafts, typescripts, and correspondence
Subseries B. Honors and Public Appearances, 1977-1995
Honors
4 Booker McConnell Prize, 1980, invitations, press releases, correspondence, and clippings
5 Harold U. Ribalow Prize, 1989, invitation
5 Royal Society of Literature Award, 1977, correspondence
6 University of Sussex Honorary Degree, 1994, itinerary, program, correspondence, and photographs
7-8 Public appearances, 1985-1995
Conference materials, programs, itineraries, correspondence, and badges
9 Asian Short Story Competition Judging, 1982, notes, correspondence, and clippings
10 Commonwealth Institute Seminar, July 1982, program, correspondence, and clippings
11 Indo-U.S. Subcommission on Education and Culture Visitorship Program, 1984, itinerary, flier, and correspondence
12* International Festival of Authors, 1987 & 1995, itinerary, flier, and list of participants (*clippings removed to oversize box 20)
Subseries C. Writings, Articles, and Reviews of Desai, 1963-1995
Box Folder
15 1 Autobiographical writings and publicity photographs, 9 handwritten drafts, 3 typescripts, and 12 photographs
2 Student theses, 5 typescripts
3 "Clear Light of Day," by Laura Omaggi, bound typescript in Italian and transcript of dissertation interview
4* Articles, clippings and photocopies (*oversize removed to box 20)
5-6 Articles in foreign languages, clippings and photocopies
7 Book catalogs, 1963-1995
Box Folder
16 Reviews
Baumgartner's Bombay
1-3 Clippings and photocopies
4 Radio broadcasts, 2 typescripts
5 Bye-Bye Blackbird, clippings
6-7 Clear Light of Day, clippings and photocopies
Box Folder
17 Cry, the Peacock
1 Typescript and clippings
2 Scrapbook of clippings
3 Fire on the Mountain, clippings and photocopies
4 Games at Twilight, clippings and photocopies
In Custody
5 For novel, clippings and photocopies
6 For film, clippings and photocopies
7 Journey to Ithaca, clippings and photocopies
8 Peacock Garden, clippings and photocopies
Box Folder
18 1 Village by the Sea, clippings and photocopies
2 Voices in the City, clippings and photocopies
3 Where Shall We Go this Summer?, clippings and photocopies
* Oversize reviews, clippings and photocopies (*removed to box 20)
Subseries D. Correspondence, Finances, and Other Papers, 1962-1996
Correspondence
4 Outgoing, 1964-1996
5 Incoming, 1971-1995
6 Erdman, Joan, 1992
7 Peter Owen Ltd., 1962-1974
8 Third-party, 1963-1996
9 Financial papers and correspondence, 1963-1986
Other papers
10* Book catalogs; clippings; oversize poster of Revolving Routes, by Gulam Mohammed Sheikh, 1981 (*removed to box 21)
Box
19-21 Oversize materials

Return to the Table of Contents