Guide to the Zera S. Fink (1902-1979) Papers

Collection Title: Zera S. Fink (1902-1979) Papers
Dates: 1944-1980
Identification: 11/3/11/6
Creator: Fink, Zera Silver, 1902-1979
Extent: 2 Boxes
Language of Materials: English
Abstract: The Zera S. Fink Papers, comprising two boxes, are arranged into four groups: general correspondence, course materials, published works and research materials. The bulk of the correspondence is from 1956 to 1959 and largely concerns the printing and publication of his book, The Early Wordsworthian Milieu. Fink's academic specialties included Milton, seventeenth century English literature and Romantic literature.
Acquisition Information: The Archives acquired the Zera S. Fink papers in two accessions. One was transferred from Special Collections on June 21, 1978 (Acc. No. 78-24). The other was donated by Mrs. Lucille Fink on July 11, 1980 (Acc. No. 80-107).
Processing Information: Kevin Barry Leonard; July 1980.
Separated Materials: Two photographs have been removed to the Zera S. Fink folder in the Archives Photographic Collection. One cassette tape recording of Fink reciting from Milton's Paradise Lost has been removed to the Audio Collection in room 107. One set of University Senate Minutes has been placed in the Archives files for that body. Two pamphlets have been sent to Gifts and Exchange.
Conditions Governing Access: None.
Repository: Northwestern University Archives
Deering Library, Room 110
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston, IL, 60208-2300
URL: http://www.library.northwestern.edu/archives
Email: archives@northwestern.edu
Phone: 847-491-3354

Biographical/Historical Information

Zera Silver Fink was born August 8, 1902 in Holdrege, Nebraska, the eldest son of Daniel J. Fink and Nellie M. (Silver) Fink. He was educated at Holdrege High School from 1916 to 1920; Hastings College from 1920 to 1921; and Grinnell College, from which he received his B.A., from 1921 to 1924. After graduating from Grinnell he served as an English teacher at Grand Island (Nebraska) High School then as an Instructor in English at Grinnell from 1925 to 1927.

Fink took his M.A. in 1928 and his Ph.D. in 1931, both from Northwestern University. At Northwestern he served as an Assistant in English from 1927 to 1928 and as an Instructor from 1928 to 1930 and from 1931 to 1934. Fink became Assistant Professor of English in 1934. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1940 and to Professor in 1944. He retired from the faculty in 1970 and became Professor Emeritus. While at Northwestern, Fink served as Acting Chairman of the Department of English in 1954, 1957, and in the summers of 1958, 1965 and 1966. He was a member of the Administrative Board of the Graduate School.

Fink's academic specialties included Milton, seventeenth century English literature and Romantic literature. He published two books including The Classical Republicans (Northwestern University Press, 1945; second edition 1962), a seminal study of the relations between literature and politics in seventeenth century England; and The Early Wordsworthian Milieu (Clarendon Press, 1958), a notebook of Christopher Wordsworth which he edited. Fink also wrote numerous scholarly articles and reviews. He received a grant from the American Council of Learned Societies for 1959-1960.

Fink served as Chairman of the 1952 Newberry Library Renaissance Conference and was a member of the Modern Language Association of America, the Milton Association of America, the Modern Humanities Association, the International Association of University Professors of English, the Conference on British Studies and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. He also was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and the University Club of Evanston.

Fink married Lucille Ethel McDannell on March 12, 1927. They had one daughter, Carlotta L. Fink (Mrs. R. H. Bogart). Fink died October 1, 1979, in Tucson, Arizona.

Scope and Content

The Zera S. Fink Papers, comprising two boxes, are arranged into four groups: general correspondence, course materials, published works and research materials.

The series includes a small amount of general correspondence, which is arranged chronologically in nine folders. Fink's correspondence is largely administrative and professional and spans the years from 1944 to 1978; although the bulk of the correspondence is from 1956 to 1959 and largely concerns the printing and publication of his book, The Early Wordsworthian Milieu.

Other correspondence pertains to his other book, The Classical Republicans; reflects his interest in Northwestern's retirement annuity program (Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America and College Retirement Equities Fund); and concerns the administration of the English Department. The folder for 1970 contains a few letters congratulating Fink upon his retirement from the Northwestern faculty. The Papers also contain a few letters written by Lucille Fink in 1980.

The course materials include examinations, syllabi, bibliographies and notes for some of the courses Fink taught. The folders are arranged by course number. Also included are two folders containing M.A. and Ph.D. examinations. The bulk of the course materials and examinations falls within the 1960s.

Fink's published works include books, articles and reviews. The series includes one folder of reviews, advertisements and references to his first book, The Classical Republicans as well as a typeset and proof (both fragmentary), reviews, references and advertisements for The Early Wordsworthian Milieu. The papers also include drafts of articles, a lecture and offprints of articles and book reviews by Fink.

The research materials included in the series are mainly notes and references maintained by Fink on small index cards or slips of paper. The research materials concern aspects of Romanticism and Romantic authors. Also among the research materials are a folder of photostats and transcriptions of Christopher Wordsworth's notebook including Fink's notes and a folder of photostatic samples of Christopher and William Wordsworth's handwriting. The folder of handwriting samples contains some correspondence from handwriting analysts pertaining to ascription of the samples.

Arrangement of Materials

The Zera S. Fink Papers are arranged into four groups: general correspondence, course materials, published works and research materials.

Subjects

Personal Name

Wordsworth, Christopher, 1774-1846

Wordsworth, William, 1770-1850

Subjects

English literature--Study and teaching (Higher)--United States

English teachers--Illinois--Evanston


Container List / Contents

  • General Correspondence
    • Correspondence, 1944, 1948, 1954Box 1, Folder 2
    • Correspondence, 1956Box 1, Folder 3
    • Correspondence, 1957Box 1, Folder 4
    • Correspondence, 1958Box 1, Folder 5
    • Correspondence, 1959Box 1, Folder 6
    • Correspondence, 1960, 1962, 1964-1966, 1968Box 1, Folder 7
    • Correspondence, 1970Box 1, Folder 8
    • Correspondence, 1971-1976, 1978, n.d.Box 1, Folder 9
    • Correspondence, 1980Box 1, Folder 10
  • Course Materials
    • English C38: English Literature of the Romantic Period - Final Exams, 1955, 1967Box 1, Folder 11
    • English D15: Studies in Romantic Literature - Final Exam, 1964Box 1, Folder 12
    • English D29: Studies in Romantic Literature - Syllabus and Bibliography, 1968Box 1, Folder 13
    • English E16: Studies in Romantic Literature (Coleridge Seminar) - Notes and Bibliographies, 1962-1963, 1965, 1969, n.d.Box 1, Folder 14
    • English E24: Studies in Milton - Notes and Bibliography, 1966, 1967Box 1, Folder 15
    • English E29: Studies in Romantic Literature - Subjects for Term Papers and Bibliographies, 1962-1963, 1965, n.d.Box 1, Folder 16
    • English E29: Studies in Romantic Literature - Notes, 1966, 1967, n.d.Box 1, Folder 17
    • M.A. Examinations, 1967, 1970Box 1, Folder 18
    • Preliminary Examinations for Ph.D. Degrees, 1965, 1966, 1969, n.d.Box 1, Folder 19
  • Published Works
    • The Classical Republicans: Reviews, Advertisements and References to The Early Wordsworthian MilieuBox 1, Folder 20
    • The Early Wordsworthian Milieu: Fragmentary ProofBox 1, Folder 21
    • The Early Wordsworthian Milieu: Fragmentary TypescriptBox 1, Folder 22
    • The Early Wordsworthian Milieu: Reviews and ReferencesBox 1, Folder 23
    • The Early Wordsworthian Milieu: AdvertisementsBox 1, Folder 24
    • Wordsworth Papers at Northwestern University LibraryBox 1, Folder 25
  • Articles
    • “The Illustrations of Milton's Paradise Lost”Box 1, Folder 26
    • “King and Doge: A Chapter in Anglo-Venetian Political and Literary Relations”Box 1, Folder 27
    • “Questions for Joycians”Box 2, Folder 1
    • “Shakespeare's England” (Lecture)Box 2, Folder 2
    • “The Theory of Mixed Government and Recent Historical Scholarship”Box 2, Folder 3
    • Offprints of Articles by FinkBox 2, Folder 4
    • Book Reviews by FinkBox 2, Folder 5
  • Research Materials
    • Coleridge: Notes and ReferencesBox 2, Folder 6
    • Ideas for ArticlesBox 2, Folder 7
    • Miscellaneous Seminar and Research NotesBox 2, Folder 8
    • References in Books and Journals to Fink's ScholarshipBox 2, Folder 9
    • Romanticism: Notes and ReferencesBox 2, Folder 10
    • Shelley: Bibliography, 1954Box 2, Folder 11
    • Shelley: SeminarBox 2, Folder 12
    • Venice: Notes and ReferencesBox 2, Folder 13
    • Christopher Wordsworth's Notebook:- Photostats and Transcriptions (Including Fink's Notes)Box 2, Folder 14
    • Wordsworth Handwriting SamplesBox 2, Folder 15
    • Zuccarelli: Notes and ReferencesBox 2, Folder 16
  • Biographical MaterialsBox 1, Folder 1