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Marilyn Hacker papers

Call Number: YCAL MSS 753

Scope and Contents

The collection contains correspondence, writings, personal papers, photographs, audiovisual material, and printed material that document the life and work of American author, editor, critic, and translator Marilyn Hacker. Hacker's writings are documented by manuscripts, typescript drafts, proofs, and associated material, including correspondence with fellow authors and publishers. Kenyon Review materials document Hacker's tenure as editor of the journal, including controversy surrounding her dismissal. The Marilyn Hacker Papers are of interest for their documentation of twentieth-century American poetry and literary life generally, as well as the gay and lesbian liberation movements of the 1970s and after.


  • 1970 - 2012


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Box 18-22 (audiovisual material): Restricted fragile material. Reference copies may be requested. Consult Access Services for further information.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased from Marilyn Hacker on the Eugene G. O'Neill Memorial Fund, 2002-2003.

December 2015 acquisitions: Gift of Marilyn Hacker, 2015.


Organized into three groupings: I. May 2002 Acquisition. II. January 2003 Acquisition. III. December 2015 Acquisitions.


23.12 Linear Feet ((26 Boxes) + 1 broadside, 2 record album storage)

Language of Materials



Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL

Marilyn Hacker (1942-)

Marilyn Hacker, American poet and editor, was born in New York City in 1942 and attended New York University, receiving a B.A. in Romance Languages in 1964. Hacker's first collection of poems, Presentation Piece (New York: Viking Press, 1974), was the recipient of the National Book Award. Her other collections include Names (W. W. Norton, 2009), Desesperanto: Poems 1999-2002 (2005); First Cities: Collected Early Poems 1960-1979 (2003); and Squares and Courtyards (2000). In addition to writing poetry, Hacker was the editor of the Kenyon Review from 1990 to 1994, and has translated the work of many European poets into English.

Hacker was married to science fiction writer Samuel Delany from 1961 to 1974 and has one daughter. She lives in New York City and Paris.

Biographical information from

Processing Information

Former call numbers: Uncat MSS 432, Uncat MSS 602.

Collections are processed to a variety of levels, depending on the work necessary to make them usable, their perceived research value, the availability of staff, competing priorities, and whether or not further accruals are expected. The library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.

This collection received a basic level of processing in 2013. Various acquisitions associated with the collection have not been merged and organized as a whole. Each acquisition is described separately in the contents list below, titled according to month and year of acquisition.

Information included in the Description of Papers note and Collection Contents section is drawn from information supplied with the collection and from an initial survey of the contents. Folder titles appearing in the contents list below are often based on those provided by the creator or previous custodian. Titles have not been verified against the contents of the folders in all cases. Otherwise, folder titles are supplied by staff during initial processing.

This finding aid may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

Guide to the Marilyn Hacker Papers
by Beinecke Staff, Annalise Hennessey
July 2013. Revised: May 2023
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Repository

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Opening Hours

Access Information

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