Guide to the Papers of Drusilla Modjeska

MS 8320 et al

National Library of Australia

Collection Summary

Title
Papers of Drusilla Modjeska
Date Range
1959-2006
Collection Number
MS 8320 et al
Extent
7.2 metres (46 boxes, 1 carton)
Language of Materials
English
Repository
National Library of Australia

Introduction

Scope and Contents

The collection includes correspondence, financial papers, diaries, notebooks, scrapbooks, drafts of Women writers: a study in Australian cultural history, 1920-1939 (1979), Exiles at home: Australian women writers 1925-1945 (1981), The poems of Lesbia Harford (1985), Inner cities: Australian women's memory of place (1989), Poppy (1990) and The Orchard (1994) and other papers.

Conditions Governing Access

Please refer to the collection's catalogue record for the access conditions (http://nla.gov.au/nla.cat-vn1388901).

Conditions Governing Use

Copying and publishing of unpublished manuscript material is subject to copyright restrictions. For such material, written permission to publish must be obtained from the copyright holder(s). Copying of unpublished material for research purposes is permissible 50 years after the death of the creator of the material.

Preferred Citation

Items from this collection should be cited as '[Title or description of manuscript item], Papers of Drusilla Modjeska, National Library of Australia, [class number, box number and series and/or file number]'.

Provenance

Drusilla Modjeska presented the first two instalments of her papers to the National Library in April 1991 and June 1992 under the Taxation Incentives for the Arts Scheme. Further addition was made in 1995.

Biographical Note

Drusilla Modjeska was born in England in 1946 and has lived in Australia since 1971. She is a writer, feminist and academic. She taught in the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences of the NSW Institute of Technology.

Her publications are Women writers: a study in Australian cultural history, 1920-1939 (1979), Exiles at home: Australian women writers 1925-1945 (1981), The poems of Lesbia Harford (1985), Inner cities: Australian women's memory of place (1989), Poppy (1990) and The Orchard (1994). Women writers was based on Modjeska's PhD thesis. A copy of the thesis is held at MS 6078.

Item Descriptions

Class MS 8320. Original consignment Show allonly 1

Comprises correspondence, 1959-1987, including letters sent by Modjeska Drusilla's family (parents and sisters) and friends. Major correspondents are Charles Modjeska (her former husband), Klim Gollan, Tony Moniaty, David F. Pocock, Lyndall Hannaford, Deb Jordan, Marsha Rowe and Marlous Terweil. Drusilla's diaries and personal documents for 1948-1987 in the collection include school and marriage certificates, copies of job applications, diaries and notebooks. Also included are book reviews and talks, 1975-1991, from when Modjeska worked as a book reviewer for The Sydney morning herald, McPhee/Penguin and others, with typescripts and newspaper cuttings of some of the reviews. The series relating to her writings comprise drafts, typescripts, research notes and some correspondence relating to the following books: Women writers (1979), Exiles at home (1981), The poems of Lesbia Harford (1985), Inner cities (1989), Poppy (1990) and The orchard (1994).

Contained in 23 boxes.

Series 1. Letters of Modjeska to her mother, 1959-83 - Box 1 Show allonly 1

Modjeska reclaimed the letters she wrote to her mother when she died in 1983. This series comprises letters written from England, Papua New Guinea, Canberra and Sydney, 1959-83 (6 Folders).

Series 2. Family Letters, 1967-87 - Box 2-3 Show allonly 1

Modjeska maintained a close relationship with her family after leaving England in the early 1970s. This series contains letters from her parents, sisters Anna Medd and Jane Bentley and other members of the Medd Family (14 Folders).

Series 3. Personal correspondence, 1966-88 - Box 3-8 Show allonly 1

This series comprises letters written by Modjeska's friends, as well as copies of many of her own letters. The letters reflect their close personal relationships, as well as literary, social and feminist concerns. Some of them were sent to Modjeska while she was in London in 1975.

The major correspondents include Charles, George and Tisha Modjeska, Ina Bertrand, Julia Bishop, Eleanor Dark, Diane Collins, Sara Dowse, Klim Gollan, Geoff Gray, Lyndall Hannaford, Kay Iseman, Deb Jordan, Tony Maniaty, David F. Pocock, Marsha Rowe, Paula Taylor and MarlousTerweil. It also includes letters written by her former husband, Charles Nicholas, while he was working in Papua New Guinea and Modjeska was living in Canberra in 1971 and copies of Modjeka's letters (42 Folders).

Series 4. Financial papers, 1967-77 - Box 9 Show allonly 1

This series contains only bank statements, receipts and accounts (7 Folders).

Series 5. Diaries and personal documents, 1948-87 - Box 10 Show allonly 1

School and marriage certificates, copies of job applications, thirteen diaries and notebooks form this series (1 Folder).

Series 6. Business correspondence, 1973-91 - Box 11-12 Show allonly 1

This series contains correspondence with academics, fellow writers and publishers concerning research and writing, as well as some financial papers. The major correspondents include Eleanor Dark, Dorothy Green, Ric Throssell, Jill Rowe, Rosemary Creswell, Lyn Riddett and Tony Maniaty (15 Folders).

Series 7. Work notebooks and scrapbooks, 1973-77 - Box 13 Show allonly 1

In this series there are three work notebooks containing newspaper clippings and loose notes.

Series 8. Book reviews and talks, 1975-91 - Box 14 Show allonly 1

Modjeska had worked as a book reviewer for the Sydney Morning Herald, McPhee/Penguin Books and others. This series comprises typescripts and newspaper cuttings of some of the reviews (1 Folder).

The series also contains typescripts and newspaper cuttings of book reviews and talks from 1987-91 (4 Folders, Added 16 November 1995).

Series 9. Exiles at home: Australian women writers, 1925-1945 - Box 15 Show allonly 1

Exiles at home traces the lives of a number of Australian women writers, including Marjorie Barnard, Eleanor Dark, Miles Franklin, Nettie Palmer and Katharine Susannah Prichard.

This series comprises drafts, photographs and some correspondence relating to the book. Some of the material in this series overlaps with those in Series 7 Women writers: A study in Australian cultural history, 1920-1939 (10 Folders).

Series 10. The poems of Lesbia Harford, 1982-85 - Box 16 Show allonly 1

Modjeska and Marjorie Pizer edited The poems of Lesbia Harford. The series contains material associated with the preparation of the book, including correspondence, drafts and a carbon copy typescript of poems that had been in the possession of Nettie Palmer. The correspondence files include copies of letters of Harford to Nettie Palmer (1939-40), letters of Esmonde Keogh (n.d.) and letters of Lesbia Harford (1914-21).

The other correspondents include Stephen Murray-Smith and Marjorie Pizer (8 Folders).

Series 11. Inner cities: Australian women's memory of place - Box 17 Show allonly 1

The series contains papers associated with the preparation of the book, which was edited by Modjeska, including correspondence and drafts.

The major correspondents include the contributors to the work, such as Barbara Hanrahan, Margaret Jones, Glenda Adams, Amirah Inglis and Daphne Gollan (8 Folders).

Series 12. Poppy, 1977-82 - Box 18-19 Show allonly 1

This series contains several heavily worked manuscripts drafts with corrections and typescripts of Poppy, Modjeska's prizewinning book about the life of her mother (14 Folders).

Series 13. Women writers: a study in Australian cultural history, 1920-1939 - Box 20-21 Show allonly 1

This series contains files relating to Modjeska's Ph.D. thesis which was later published as a book, drafts and complete type scripts of the book and correspondence. The correspondents include Rick Throssell and Jack Lindsay (13 Folders).

See also Series 10.

Series 14. Miscellaneous - Box 21 Show allonly 1

This series contains Virago interviews and typescripts of interviews (2 Folders), addresses and miscellaneous items (1 Folder).

Series 15. The Orchard - Box 22-23 Show allonly 1

These papers consist primarily of a series of drafts for the book, The Orchard (1994), as well as some preliminary notes, research material and a small amount of correspondence relating to it (13 Folders, Added 16 November 1995). The preliminary notes and one letter (2 Folders) are in the closed access part of this collection.

Class Acc00.054. Consignment added 2000 Show allonly 1

Comprises further papers, 1987-1992.

Contained in 7 boxes, 1 carton.

Class Acc07.045. Consignment added 2007 Show allonly 1

Comprises diaries dating from 1992, material relating to Stravinsky's Lunch, and other material.

Contained in 16 boxes.