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Julian Barnes:

A Preliminary Inventory of His Papers at the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center

Creator: Barnes, Julian, 1946-
Title: Julian Barnes Papers
Dates: 1971-2000
Quantity: 19 boxes, 3 oversize boxes, 1 oversize folder (14.23 linear feet)
Abstract: Papers include early typescript drafts, printer's copies, proofs, production material, and reviews of Barnes's works as well as his crime novels written under the pseudonym Dan Kavanagh. In addition, there are articles by and about Barnes, book reviews, fan mail, publisher's correspondence, letters from acquaintances and writers, publicity clippings, photographs, and posters.
Access:

Open for research, with the exception of restricted contracts and related correspondence




Acquisition:

Purchase, 2002 (Reg no. 14971)

Processed by:

Liz Murray, 2002

Repository:

Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, The University of Texas at Austin


The papers of British writer Julian Barnes span a thirty-year career from his first published fiction A Self-Possessed Woman (1975) to his recent novel, Love, etc. published in 2000. Represented in the collection are Barnes's novels Metroland (1980), Before She Met Me (1982), Flaubert's Parrot (1984), Staring at the Sun (1986), A History of the World in 10 1/2 Chapters (1989), Talking It Over (1991), The Porcupine (1992), Cross-Channel (1996), England, England (1998), and Love, etc. (2000). Also included are crime novels Barnes wrote under the pseudonym Dan Kavanagh, Going to the Dogs (1987), Duffy (1980), Fiddle City (1981), and Putting the Boot In (1985). Articles by and about Barnes, journalism, correspondence, clippings, photographs, and posters are also present.

The collection is organized in four series: Series I. Works, Series II. Articles, Series III. Correspondence, 1971-1998, and Series IV. Career-related.

The Works Series begins with two holograph notebooks containing early material relating to most of Barnes's books. In his description of his writing methods, Barnes indicated that "There might be an occasion when the germ--or rather the pre-germ--of a novel makes an earlier appearance in a travel diary or a personal journal…." The series continues in an alphabetical arrangement of works by title. In addition to the novels, the collection contains Barnes's unpublished non-fiction work A Literary Guide to Oxford, production material for Letters from London (1995) and Evermore (1996), and screenplays Growing Up in the Gorbals, and The Private Wound. Screenplay adaptations, written by others, for Love, etc., and Metroland are also present.

Describing his papers, Barnes wrote "everything I do from the moment I am faced by what I recognize as the possibility--or pre-possibility--of a novel is contained within the Archive. I have never thrown away more than the occasional (more or less duplicate) page of typescript. My Archive therefore contains 98 or 99% of all the marks I make on paper as a novelist." For most of these works, the creative process includes early typescript drafts through printer's copies, proofs, production material, and reviews. Occasionally, holograph notes and "scheme cards" are also present.

Series II. Articles includes articles and book reviews, Letter from London, tear sheets from The New Yorker (1990-1994), and typescripts of Barnes's TV criticism published in the Observer (1982-1986).

The Correspondence in Series III dates from 1971-1998 and includes fan mail, publisher's correspondence, and letters from acquaintances and writers including Eric Ambler, Kingsley Amis, Dirk Bogarde, Anthony Burgess, Graham Greene, Elizabeth Hardwick, Michael Horovitz, Arthur Koestler, Philip Larkin, Frances Partridge, Myfanwy Piper, V. S. Pritchett, Dodie Smith, and Auberon Waugh.

The career-related material in Series IV includes articles about Barnes, publicity clippings from 1980-1991, ephemera, and a rather large collection of photographs, mostly taken for publicity purposes.

Numerous editions of Barnes's works received with the collection, mostly foreign imprints, were transferred to the HRC Library, along with his commercially recorded books on tape and tapes of interviews and readings. Included with the books is a special limited edition of Cross-Channel issued on the occasion of Barnes's fiftieth birthday which he inscribed to the HRC.

The collection is in good physical condition and is open for research.