Finding Aid for the Barbara Guest Papers approximately 1980-1985 LSC.1992
Finding aid prepared by Stacy Wood, 2012; updated by Sabrina Ponce, 2017
UCLA Library Special CollectionsOnline finding aid last updated 2 August 2017
Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
Los Angeles, CA, 90095-1575
Title: Barbara Guest papers
Identifier/Call Number: LSC.1992
Contributing Institution: UCLA Library Special Collections
Language of Material: English
Physical Description: 0.4 linear feet (1 document box)
Date (inclusive): circa 1980-1985
Abstract: Barbara Guest, 1920-2006, was an American poet and prose stylist who gained prominence in the 1950s and 1960s as an active member of the New York school of poetry. This collection consists of one annotated manuscript of her biography about the Imagist poet H.D. titled Herself Defined: A Biography of the Poet H.D. It was later published in 1984 as Herself Defined: The Poet H.D. and Her World.
Physical Location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Stored off-site at SRLF. All requests to access special collections material must be made in advance using the request button located on this page.
Creator: Guest, Barbara
COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Open for research. All requests to access special collections material must be made in advance using the request button located on this page.
Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.
[Identification of item], Barbara Guest Papers (Collection 1992). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.
Provenance unknown. This collection is part of an outreach and collection-building partnership between the June L. Mazer Lesbian Archives, the UCLA Center for the Study of Women (CSW) and the UCLA Library.
Processed by Stacy Wood, 2012. Description enhanced and further physical processing completed by Sabrina Ponce in 2017.
The June L. Mazer Lesbian Archive at UCLA is an outreach and collection-building partnership between the June L. Mazer Lesbian Archives , the UCLA Center for the Study of Women (CSW) , and the UCLA Library . These collections expand the pool of primary source materials available to researchers and to the community at large. This partnership was initiated by CSW and is funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to inventory, organize, preserve, and digitize more than eighty Mazer collections pertaining to lesbian and feminist activism and writings.
UCLA Catalog Record ID: 7103083
Barbara Guest was born in Wilmington, North Carolina on September 6, 1920, but was raised for most of her life in California. She was an American poet who is most often considered a member of the first generation of the New York school of poetry. The New York school poets were characterized by their vivid imagery, stream of consciousness writing, and spontaneous manner. Drawing their inspiration from the contemporary avant-garde art movements, they are also closely associated with the broader art movement of the 1950s and 1960s. Other poets commonly associated with this school are Frank O'Hara, John Ashbery, Alice Notley, and Kenneth Koch. Guest received her Bachelor of Arts in Humanities in 1943 from the University of California, Berkeley. She was awarded the Frost Medal for Lifetime Achievement by the Poet's Society of America. Barbara Guest died in Berkeley, California on February 15, 2006.
Barbara Guest's manuscript highlights the life of H.D., born Hilda Doolittle (September 10, 1886-September 27, 1961) in Pennsylvania. In 1911 she moved to London where she became recognized and involved with the Imagist movement of the time. The Imagists were an avant garde poetic school focused on precise, clear imagery and sharp, economic language. Their publications included the work of some of the most prominent figures in the Modernist movement. H.D. was the literary editor of the Egoist journal from 1916-1917 and her poetry appeared in the English Review and Transatlantic Review. She was married for a period of time to Richard Aldington although their marriage ended during World War I. H.D. befriended Sigmund Freud and later became his patient. She was an outspoken bisexual and had relationships with men and women throughout her life. Her work and life was rediscovered in the 1970s and she became an icon of the gay and feminist movements.
This collection contains an annotated draft of a book by Barbara Guest about the life of the poet H.D. This undated, manuscript version is titled Herself Defined: A Biography of the Poet H.D., but it would later be published in 1984 with the title Herself Defined: The Poet H.D. and Her World.
Arranged according to original order of the manuscript.
Barbara Guest's papers are held at the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University.
Subjects and Indexing Terms
H. D. (Hilda Doolittle), 1886-1961
June L. Mazer Lesbian Archive at UCLA.
June L. Mazer Lesbian Archives.
University of California, Los Angeles. Library.
Manuscripts for publication.
Poets, American--20th century--Biography.
Women and literature--United States--History--20th century.