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Labedz (Leopold) papers
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Collection Details
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  • Use
  • Acquisition Information
  • Preferred Citation
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Title: Leopold Labedz papers
    Date (inclusive): 1860-1996
    Collection Number: 89018
    Contributing Institution: Hoover Institution Library and Archives
    Language of Material: English, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Czech, and French
    Physical Description: 140 manuscript boxes, 5 oversize boxes (64.2 Linear Feet)
    Abstract: Correspondence, speeches and writings, reports, serial issues, clippings, other printed matter, photographs, sound recordings, and motion picture film relating to political and cultural conditions in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, Soviet and Eastern European dissidents, Russian and Eastern European literature, post-World War II international relations, and the nature and history of communism and Marxian theory. Includes manuscripts submitted to Survey for publication, correspondence with contributors, and financial and other records of the journal.
    Creator: Labedz, Leopold
    Physical Location: Hoover Institution Library & Archives


    Box FH9 may not be used without permission of the Archivist. The remainder of the collection is open for research; materials must be requested in advance via our reservation system. If there are audiovisual or digital media material in the collection, they must be reformatted before providing access.


    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Library & Archives.

    Acquisition Information

    Acquired by the Hoover Institution Library & Archives in 1989.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Leopold Labedz papers, [Box no., Folder no. or title], Hoover Institution Library & Archives.

    Biographical Note

    Leopold Labedz was born on January 22, 1920, in Simbirsk, Russia, but spent most of his childhood in Warsaw, where both of his parents were well-respected physicians. Labedz studied at the Kreczmara Gymnasium and subsequently, in 1937, continued his education at the University of Warsaw. By mid-1938, he had relocated to Paris to study medicine at the Sorbonne. The exposure to French culture quickly shifted his interests from medicine to the humanities and to political philosophy in particular. However, the events of World War II stalled Labedz's academic pursuits.
    While on summer vacation in Poland, World War II broke out. Labedz's father, who was in the Polish military medical service, was recruited by the Soviet army to act as a head-physician of a military hospital in Eastern Poland. Since Labedz's mother died when he was very young, he joined his father at the hospital as its librarian. By 1941, in the course of numerous relocations of the hospital, 21-year-old Leopold was separated from his father. As a result, he joined the Polish Army, led by General Anders.
    When the war was over, instead of returning to Poland, Labedz reunited with his father in London. In the early 1950s he decided to continue his studies by enrolling at the London School of Economics. There he obtained his bachelor of science degree in economics, while never losing sight of his love for the social sciences. In 1955, Labedz founded the quarterly journal Survey, which he edited for 25 years. The journal primarily focused on Soviet studies and the world of communism and was considered to be the authoritative publication on the subject. The journal folded in the 1980s, mainly due to lack of funding and Labedz's ailing health.
    Leopold Labedz died in March 1993.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Leopold Labedz papers are comprised of biographical documents, correspondence, conference materials, radio and television broadcasts, speeches and writings, subject files, administrative records of Survey journal, writings submitted to the journal for publication, photographs, slides, other audiovisual materials, and printed matter.
    The collection documents the personal and professional life of Leopold Labedz and includes information on the administrative activities of Survey journal, as well as its relation to the Congress for Cultural Freedom.
    Labedz's original order was retained when possible.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Russian literature
    Europe, Eastern -- Politics and government -- 1945-
    Dissenters -- Soviet Union
    Soviet Union -- Civilization
    Soviet Union -- Politics and government
    Europe, Eastern -- Civilization
    World politics -- 1945-1989
    Dissenters -- Europe, Eastern
    European literature