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Finding Aid for the Brian Urquhart Collection of Material about Ralph Bunche, ca. 1932-1972
364  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Indexing Terms
  • Related Material

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Brian Urquhart Collection of Material about Ralph Bunche,
    Date (inclusive): ca. 1932-1972
    Collection number: 364
    Creator: Urquhart, Brian
    Extent: 48 boxes (24 linear ft.) 2 oversize boxes
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Department of Special Collections.
    Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
    Abstract: Sir Brian Urquhart (b.1919) was active in the organization and direction of the United Nations (UN) Emergency Force in Middle East (1956) and responsible for the organization and direction of UN peace-keeping operations and special political assignments. Ralph Bunche (1904-1971) was the undersecretary for special political affairs at the UN (1958-67) and undersecretary general (1968). He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1950. The collection consists of papers of, about, and collected by Ralph J. Bunche and later used by Brian Urquhart to write Ralph Bunche: an American Life (1993). Items in the collection include manuscripts, his notebooks, project files, audiotape recordings, clippings, travel photographs, and memorabilia.
    Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information

    Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

    Copyright to portions of this collection has been assigned to the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections. The library can grant permission to publish for materials to which it holds the copyright. All requests for permission to publish or quote must be submitted in writing to the Manuscripts Librarian, Department of Special Collections.] Credit shall be given as follows: [c in circle] The Regents of the University of California on behalf of the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections.

    Restrictions on Access

    COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Advance notice required for access.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Brian Urquhart, 1995.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Brian Urquhart Collection of Material about Ralph Bunche (Collection 364). Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

    Biography

    Sir Brian Urquhart was born on February 28, 1919; educated at Westminster School and Christ Church, Oxford University; served in the Dorset Regiment and Airborne Forces during World War II; personal assistant to Gladwyn Jebb, Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission of the United Nations, London, 1945-46; personal assistant to Trygve Lie, 1st secretary general of the United Nations, 1946-49; member, Office of Undersecretary General For Special Political Affairs, 1954-71; active in organization and direction of UN Emergency Force in Middle East, 1956; assistant to the secretary general's special representative in the Congo, 1960, and UN Representative in Katanga, Congo, 1961-62; responsible for organization and direction of UN peace-keeping operations and special political assignments; Assistant. Secretary General of the UN, 1972-74; publications include Hammarskjold (1972) and Ralph Bunche: an American Life (1993); Bunche was born in Detroit, Michigan, on August 7, 1904; AB, UCLA, 1927; AM, 1928, and Ph.D., 1934, Harvard University; professor at Howard University from 1929-1950, and at Harvard, 1950-1952; in 1948 joined Permanent Secretariat of UN; Undersecretary for special political affairs, UN, 1958-67; became Undersecretary general in 1968; awarded Nobel Peace Prize in 1950; died in New York, on December 9, 1971.

    Biographical Narrative

    Sir Brian Urquhart has led an extraordinary life, much of which has been spent in and around the United Nations system --experience which accounts for his international stature and visibility in current debates over the future of the United Nations and the role of UN security forces in the post-Cold War era. It is fair to say that he has become the central figure in the dialogue over renewing the United Nations system.
    Born in England in 1919, Brian Urquhart was educated at Westminster School and Christ Church, Oxford. After serving in the British army and military intelligence during World War II in North Africa and Europe, he served as a personal assistant to Gladwyn Jebb, who established the preparatory commission of the United Nations in London. Since 1946, Sir Brian's professional life has been, in many respects, a history of the UN itself. He was personal assistant to the first Secretary-General (Trygve Lie) and subsequently served in various capacities under Ralph Bunche between 1954 and 1971. Over this period, Sir Brian was centrally involved in the conferences on peaceful uses of atomic energy, the Congo crisis in the early 1960s, and peacekeeping in Cyprus, Kashmir, and the Middle East. In the period after 1972, Brian Urquhart was one of the principal political advisors of the Secretary-General, and served as the Under-Secretary-General for Special Political Affairs, working on Lebanon, Israel and Palestine, and Namibia, among others. He retired from the United Nations Secretariat in 1986.
    Across this extraordinary career, Sir Brian has written several books, including brilliant biographies of Dag Hammarskjöld and Ralph Bunche. He has also written an autobiography, A Life in Peace and War, published by Harper & Row. His books on decolonization, and more recently on reforming the United Nations system, have projected him into the international limelight of transnational politics. A tireless speaker and activist, Sir Brian is deeply involved in the events surrounding the fiftieth UN anniversary. His pieces on the UN volunteer force and the responsibilities of the UN system published in The New York Review of Books in 1993 and 1994 have set the terms of the debate for all future discussions of rethinking the UN system.
    Conversations with History: Sir Brian Urquhart. 1998. Online. Berkeley Multimedia Research Center. Internet. 9 April 1998. http://bmrc.berkeley.edu/cwh/urquhart/.

    Scope and Content

    Collection consists of papers of, about, and collected by Ralph J. Bunche and later used by his colleague and biographer, Brian Urquhart. Includes manuscripts, his notebooks, project files, audiotape recordings, clippings, travel photographs, and memorabilia. The notebooks document more than five decades of Bunche's evolution as a political thinker and carefully preserve the origin and genesis of his major published and unpublished speeches, essays, articles, and other writings. Project files include research materials consulted by Bunche, reports generated by him and/or his affiliates, and photocopies of business correspondence. Audiotapes include transcriptions of taped interviews with Bunche, mostly from the 1960s. Clippings and memorabilia include articles by and about Bunche, along with reviews and letters to him.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

    Subjects

    Urquhart, Brian--Archives.
    Bunche, Ralph J. (Ralph Johnson), 1904-1971.
    United Nations--Officials and employees.
    Diplomats--Archival resources.

    Related Material

    Ralph Bunche Papers (Collection 2051). Available at Department of Special Collections, UCLA.