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Institute of Germanic Studies

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0367 IGS
Held at: Institute of Modern Languages
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Full title: Institute of Germanic Studies
Date(s): 1951-1993
Level of description: Collection (Fonds)
Extent: 5 boxes
Name of creator(s): Institute of Germanic Studies
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Institute of Germanic Studies was founded in 1950. The Institute is primarily a research institute, serving the needs of postgraduate students and scholars from the United Kingdom and abroad. The Institute has a wide-ranging publishing programme, including monographs, volumes of essays, conference proceedings, dissertations and bibliographies. Its programme of activities comprises lectures by guest speakers, symposia on particular authors and/or topics, readings by visiting writers, reading workshops, and colloquia for postgraduate students. The Institute also hosts the intercollegiate course leading to the MA degree in German of the University of London.

The Institute's Library holds over 87,000 volumes (nearly 500 current periodicals). It is widely recognised as the principal research collection for German in the University of London, and is the largest of its kind not only in the United Kingdom, but indeed anywhere outside the German-speaking countries. The reference collection covers the language and literature of all periods, with outstanding holdings of journals, reference works, and contemporary writing. Its book collection starts with the printed works of the late fifteenth century and comes right up to the present, whilst its extensive manuscript and archive holdings (many of which remain unknown and unpublished) range from the mid-ninth century to contemporary poetry.

The Research Centre for German Exile Studies was established at the IGS in 1995, when the Institute offered a home to this new organisation, which combined the former London Research Group for German Exile Studies and the Research Centre for Germans and Austrians in Great Britain, previously at the University of Aberdeen. The work of the Centre focuses on the history of those German-speaking emigrés who found refuge in Great Britain, on their personal recollections and experiences, their reception in British society, and their enrichment of the life of their new country of residence in such varied spheres as the professions, industry and commerce, literature, art and culture, politics, publishing, the media, and the world of entertainment and leisure.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of the Institute of Germanic Studies (IGS), 1951-1995, including
Papers, 1951-1961 on repair of war damage and the conversion of 29 Russell Square for the IGS, including plans, correspondence with Surveyors, schedule of work, application for award under National Building Programme, tenders, and contact with the builders;
Papers on production of a "Union List" of periodicals dealing with Germanic languages and literatures in the University Library and libraries of the Colleges and Institutes of the University of London, 1956;
Minutes, correspondence and papers on the Medieval Studies Group project to compile a bibliography and commentary of Wolfram von Eschenbach, 1961-1963;
Papers on Exhibitions at IGS, 1961-1893
Papers on commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the death of Goethe, 1982;
Papers on publication of Germanistik in Festschriften von den Sufängen (1877) bis 1973 IGS Friends Newsletter, 1987-1995;
Visitors Book, 1956-1983.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:
English and German

System of arrangement:

As described in the scope and content above.

Conditions governing access:

Researchers should apply to consult material at least forty-eight hours in advance by letter, facsimile, e-mail or telephone. The Library staff need a name and contact number, a concise and clear idea of the nature of the enquiry and a date and time for consultation.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Photocopies may be made, although this is at the discretion of the Librarian and is dependent on the nature of the material.

Finding aids:

Box and accession lists.

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

The papers were generated and retained by the IGS

Allied Materials

Related material:

Other papers have been retained by staff of the Institute, and may be transferred to the Library in future.

National Register of Archives: Click here to view NRA record

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Compiled by Alan Kucia as part of the RSLP AIM25 Project.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000 and National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal Place and Corporate Names 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
May 2002

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