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Samuel Roth papers, 1907-1994

Author: Samuel Roth
Edition/Format:   Archival material : English
Summary:
Samuel Roth (1893-1974)—writer, publisher, entrepreneur, and all-around schemer—is best known for publishing unauthorized excerpts of James Joyce's Ulysses in the United States, and for being the plaintiff in a landmark case before the United States Supreme Court that redefined what constitutes obscene material unprotected by the First Amendment. The Samuel Roth Papers contain annotated books, manuscripts, court
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Details

Genre/Form: Periodicals
Trials, litigation, etc
Cases
Named Person: James Joyce; James Joyce; Adelaide Kugel; D H Lawrence; Norman Lockridge, pseud.; Adelaide Roth; Pauline Roth; Samuel Roth; David Zorn, pseud.; James Joyce; D H Lawrence; Samuel Roth
Document Type: Archival Material
All Authors / Contributors: Samuel Roth
OCLC Number: 671301027
Language Note: English. Material is in English and in French.
Notes: RBML has also obtained Samuel Roth's library, including copies of his magazines and journals (BEAU, Two Worlds & Two Worlds Monthly, American Aphrodite, and Good Times). In addition, the library holds copies of the many books published by Roth's imprints, as well as a number of books from his own personal library.
Description: 25.2 linear feet (25.2 linear feet 54 boxes: 51 document boxes 2 oversize flat boxes 1 record carton)
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Abstract:

Samuel Roth (1893-1974)—writer, publisher, entrepreneur, and all-around schemer—is best known for publishing unauthorized excerpts of James Joyce's Ulysses in the United States, and for being the plaintiff in a landmark case before the United States Supreme Court that redefined what constitutes obscene material unprotected by the First Amendment. The Samuel Roth Papers contain annotated books, manuscripts, court documents, business records, copyright statements, unpublished typescripts (by Roth and others), publishing advertisements and materials, as well as correspondence.

The Samuel Roth Papers contain annotated books, manuscripts, court documents, business records, copyright statements, unpublished typescripts (by Roth and others), publishing advertisements and materials, as well as correspondence. Among Roth's own works are his poetry, plays, and fiction, including The Transfiguration, an epic Roth thought would bring him fame and success as a writer. Both his unpublished autobiography, Count Me Among the Missing, and his daughter's unfinished memoir of her father, In a Plain Brown Wrapper (as well as her extensive research materials), are also included in the collection.

For certain works, Samuel Roth employed pseudonyms such as David Zorn, and his most frequently used nom de guerre, Norman Lockridge. Interestingly, he often used the latter name to clandestinely correspond with people, such as T.S. Eliot and Ernest Hemingway, who had signed Joyce's International Protest against him.

Blending both the personal and the professional, the Correspondence series houses Roth's numerous prison letters sent from Lewisburg while serving his multiple sentences. Usually addressed to his wife Pauline, Roth shares his thoughts regarding prison life, his numerous literary undertakings, and advises Pauline regarding business matters. Many of Roth's early professional correspondents (1915-1925) are major names of twentieth century modernist literature and poetics, that include: Floyd Dell; (1917): William Stanley Braithwaite, John Gould Fletcher, James Oppenheim, Edgar Lee Masters, George Edward Woodberry, Sara Teasdale Filsinger, Lizette Woodsworth Reese and William Roe Benet; (1918-1919): Jessie Rittenhouse, Shaemus O'Sheel, Louise Bryant, H.D.; (1920-1921): Arthur Symons, Israel Zangwill, T.S. Eliot, Clement Wood, Carl Van Doren, George Bernard Shaw, Aldous Huxley, Edward Gosse, J.C. Squire, Ezra Pound, Leonard Woolf; (1922-25): Sylvia Beach, Avrahm Yarmolinsky, John Herrmann, Ezra Pound, Bryher (Annie Winifred Ellerman), James Branch Cabell, Ford Madox Ford, Harriet Shaw Weaver, Dorothy M. Richardson, Arthur Stanley Eddington, Upton Simclair, Leslie Gordon Philips, Gershon Legman.

The calendar series, part of Roth's editorial efforts, shows how much Roth was, in many ways, ahead of his time in regards to the publishing business and its many sales gimmicks. Similarly, the Publishing series as a whole represents a great testament to Roth's advertising acumen, offering a fascinating behind-the-scenes glimpse of the self-publishing business in the years following World War II.

Roth's legal troubles encompassed many years. The prepared packets seem to have, in most cases, been created on-the-go during the trials, while some may have been put together at a later date.

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Primary Entity

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