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Guide to the Angelica Balabanoff Papers, [ca. 1938]-1965

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Collection Summary

Repository: Archives and Special Collections Library, Vassar College Libraries
Creator: Balabanoff, Angelica, 1878-1965
Title: Angelica Balabanoff Papers
Dates: [ca. 1938]-1965
Quantity: 0.3 cubic ft (1 box)
Abstract: Collection consists of manuscripts by Balabanoff including the first draft of a portion of her autobiography MY LIFE AS A REBEL, published in 1938, and several poems. There is also an obituary, 1965.
Forms of Materials: Manuscripts

Biographical Note

The daughter of a Russian Jewish landowner and businessman, Angelica Balabanoff rebelled at a young age against her upper middle-class upbringing. She earned a doctorate at the Universite Nouvelle in Brussels and began her lifelong commitment to the socialist movement. After joining the Italian Socialist Party she worked for the party in Switzerland, where she befriended Benito Mussolini. His break with socialism and espousal of fascism deeply disappointed and angered Balabanoff.

While not a great theoretician, Balabanoff was well respected in the European socialist and labor movements. She was secretary to the Zimmerwald movement, and following the Bolshevik revolution, was named Secretary of the Third Communist International in 1919. A few years later she broke with the Bolsheviks, protesting the Comintern's treatment of the Italian socialists. Emigrating first to Sweden, she began writing poetry. During World War II she lived in the United States but returned to Italy after the war. Until her death she continued to hope and work for a socialist future.

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Scope and Content Note

Collection consists of manuscripts by Balabanoff including the first draft of a portion of her autobiography MY LIFE AS A REBEL, published in 1938, and several poems. There is also an obituary, 1965.

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Access and Use

Access

This collection is open for research according to the regulations of the Vassar College Archives and Special Collections Library without any additional restrictions.

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Subject Headings

Organizations:

  • Communist International.

Subjects:

  • Communism--Europe.
  • Communists.
  • Labor and laboring classes--Europe--Political activity.
  • Socialism--Europe.
  • Socialists.
  • Women in politics--Europe.
  • Women social reformers.
  • Zimmerwald movement.

Places:

  • Europe--Social conditions.

Document Types:

  • Poems.

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Encoding Information

Encoded by Laura Finkel and Elizabeth Clarke, November 2006

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Angelica Balabanoff Papers, Archives and Special Collections Library, Vassar College Libraries.

Processing Information

Original processing date unknown.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Angelica Balabanoff.

Additional material added in 2009 from the Autograph File.

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Container List

Folder 1 First draft of the first chapters of My Life as a Rebel New York : Harper Brothers, 1938
Folder 2-6 First drafts of poems in five languages (English, French, Italian, Spanish, & Russian)
Folder 7 Obituary
Folder 8 Correspondence, 1941-1947, n.d.

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