Literature & Rare books

Not your ordinary Leprechaun!

Submitted by kspring on Fri, 03/06/2015 - 17:23
Soon the celebration of St. Patrick’s day will be here and the color green will enliven our pancakes, beverages, and – down in San Diego especially, our eggs. And while the hue of the Emerald Isle lends a festive note to the day, historically some of the visual symbols associated with the modern day feast have differed. For instance, did you know that the Leprechaun hasn’t always worn a green jacket replete with golden clasps and buckles? According to Fairy and folk tales of Ireland, edited by W.B. Yeats, the Leprechaun wears red!

A Scandalous Love Affair

Submitted by kgallon on Thu, 02/12/2015 - 14:48

In light of Valentine’s Day, UC Irvine’s Special Collections & Archives would like to highlight a noteworthy love affair from our British Naval History Collection. This love affair was between the famed Admiral, Lord Horatio Nelson and Lady Emma Hamilton.

First Edition of Twelve Years A Slave, the Book

Submitted by smacleod on Mon, 03/03/2014 - 20:22
Congratulations to everyone associated with the film 12 Years A Slave. This outstanding film is based on the book by Solomon Northup, which was first published in 1853 -- the year that Northup became a free man. The book was written in three months, and was published by Derby and Miller of Auburn, New York. Northup's book sold over 30,000 copies in the first three years. The full and descriptive account of his experiences as a slave was used by numerous historians researching and writing about slavery.

Detective novelist Kenneth Millar (aka Ross Macdonald) born this day in 1915

Submitted by smacleod on Fri, 12/13/2013 - 17:30
The Kenneth Millar Papers (MS-L001) are located in Special Collections and Archives. This collection contains the personal and professional papers of Kenneth Millar. It includes manuscripts for novels, poems, short stories, and other works; manuscripts of political and environmental writings; reviews; screenplays; a typescript of Millar's doctoral dissertation; correspondence; family photographs; and other personal material.

Allen Ginsberg Reads "Howl" for the First Time, October 7, 1955

Submitted by smacleod on Mon, 10/07/2013 - 17:23
Fifty-eight years ago today, on October 7, 1955, Allen Ginsberg read his landmark poem Howl for the first time at the Six Gallery at 3119 Fillmore Street in San Francisco. Other poets who read that night were Philip Lamantia, Michael McClure, Gary Snyder, and Philip Whalen. Kenneth Rexroth was there to introduce the poets.

The “Controlled Schizophrenia” of Donald Heiney and Macdonald Harris -- papers now available

Submitted by smacleod on Mon, 03/28/2011 - 11:55

In the early 1950’s Macdonald Harris began his career as a fiction writer selling short stories to national magazines while Donald Heiney was beginning his academic career as faculty at the University of Utah. In the mid 1960s Donald Heiney became one of the pioneer faculty of UC Irvine, while Macdonald Harris turned to writing novels.