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Finding Aid for the Robert Ardrey Papers, 1935-1960
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Collection Details
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  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Robert Ardrey Papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1935-1960
    Collection number: 957
    Creator: Ardrey, Robert
    Extent: 4 boxes (4 linear ft.)
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library Special Collections.
    Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
    Abstract: Robert Ardrey (1908-1970) was born in Chicago, Illinois. He studied the natural and social sciences at University of Chicago and lectured on anthropology for two years, but later found himself more interested in drama. He became a Hollywood screenwriter and wrote film scripts, novels, and plays. The collection consists of correspondence, clippings, ephemera and motion picture scripts written by Ardrey.
    Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information

    Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

    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.

    Restrictions on Access

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

    Additional Physical Form Available

    A copy of the original version of this online finding aid is available at the UCLA Library Special Collections for in-house consultation and may be obtained for a fee. Please contact:
    • Public Services Division
    • UCLA Library Special Collections
    • Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
    • Box 951575
    • Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
    • Telephone: 310/825-4988 (10:00 a.m. - 4:45 p.m., Pacific Time)
    • Email: spec-coll@library.ucla.edu

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Helen Ardrey, 1963.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Robert Ardrey Papers (Collection 957). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library.

    UCLA Catalog Record ID

    UCLA Catalog Record ID: 462218 


    Robert Ardrey was born October 16, 1908 in Chicago; studied natural and social sciences at University of Chicago and lectured on anthropology for two years, but later found himself more interested in drama, where he was influenced by Thornton Wilder; his first plays had brief runs, but led to his becoming a Hollywood screenwriter, 1938; wrote film scripts, novels, and plays, including Thunder Rock, which was successful in London and filmed in Hollywood; returned to the study of anthropology in 1955, and later produced four works: African Genesis (1961), The Territorial Imperative (1966), The Social Contract (1970), and The Hunting Hypothesis (1976) all arguing that man was innately aggressive creature; continued to write screenplays, including Khartoum; finished autobiography shortly before his death in Kalk Bay, South Africa in 1980.

    Scope and Content

    Collection consists of letters from Ardrey to his wife and children, business correspondence, 14 motion picture scripts written by Ardrey, clippings, and ephemera.

    Indexing Terms

    Ardrey, Robert--Archives.
    Screenwriters--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources.
    Film scripts.