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Myra Sklarew (1934- ), professor of literature and author of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction essays, was born in Baltimore, Maryland. The Myra Sklarew papers date from 1858 to 2008 (bulk dates 1970-2008) and include materials that Sklarew created and accumulated during her lifetime, materials about her life and her writings, and the creative output of others that was inspired by Sklarew. The materials include correspondence; manuscripts and drafts of published Sklarew literary works; copies of Sklarew's monographs; serial publications containing works by and about Sklarew; monographs and manuscripts written by other individuals; and subject files on various topics relating to Sklarew's work.
This collection is open for research.
Photocopies of original materials may be provided for a fee and at the discretion of the curator. Please see our Duplication of Materials policy for more information. Queries regarding publication rights and copyright status of materials within this collection should be directed to the appropriate curator.
15.00 Linear Feet
The Myra Sklarew papers date from 1858 to 2008 (bulk dates 1970-2008) and include materials that Sklarew created and accumulated during her lifetime (1934-), materials about her life and her writings, and the creative output of others that was inspired by Sklarew. The materials include correspondence; manuscripts and drafts of published Sklarew literary works; copies of Sklarew's monographs; serial publications containing works by and about Sklarew; monographs and manuscripts written by other individuals; and subject files on various topics relating to Sklarew's work.
Myra Sklarew (1934- ), professor of literature and author of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction essays, was born in Baltimore, Maryland, to biochemist Samuel Weisberg and his wife, librarian Anne Wolpe Weisberg. She studied biology at Tufts University, receiving her B. S. in 1956, and earned an M. A. in 1970 from the Writing Seminars, Johns Hopkins University, where she studied under Elliott Coleman. In 1955 she married Bruce Sklarew, from whom she was divorced in 1976. The Sklarews' two children, Eric and Deborah, were born in 1959 and 1957. Myra Sklarew has resided in Bethesda, Maryland, since 1961.
In adolescence, Sklarew began her career in the sciences, working summers in research labs and mental hospitals, and studied at Cold Spring Harbor Biological Laboratory, with Salvador Luria and Max Delbruck, and in the Department of Neurophysiology at Yale University School of Medicine. Currently Professor Emerita, Sklarew has taught literature and creative writing at American University in Washington, D.C., since 1970, except for the period between 1987 and 1991 when she served as President of the Corporation of Yaddo, the artist community in Saratoga Springs, New York.
She is the author of four chapbooks (In the Basket of the Blind, 1975; Blessed Art Thou, No-One, 1982; and The Travels of the Itinerant Freda Aharon, 1985; If You Want to Live Forever, 2012), ten collections of poetry (From the Backyard of the Diaspora, 1976; The Science of Goodbyes, 1982; Altamira, 1987; Eating the White Earth, 1994; Lithuania: New & Selected Poems, 1995; and The Witness Trees, 2000; Harmless, 2010; The Courage to Fight Violence Against Women; Akedah: The Binding of Isaac, 2021; Altamira, new edition 2022), a collection of short fictions, Like a Field Riddled by Ants, 1987, and a collection of essays, Over the Rooftops of Time, 2002. A co-edited work with Dr. Bruce Sklarew, The Journey of Child Development: Selected Papers of Joseph Noshpitz, M. D., was published in October 2010 by Routledge. Additional nonfiction works include: The Junk Dealer’s Daughter by Sarah Blacher Cohen, co-editor with Merrill Leffler (2012); The Power of Witnessing, Chapter: Leiser’s Song (2012); Invitation to a Country Called Aging, co-authored with Patricia Garfinkel; Healing Trauma: The Power of Listening, Chapter: Trauma Made Manifest: Its Persistent Forms (2018); A Survivor Named Trauma: Holocaust Memory in Lithuania (2020). Her poetry has been recorded for the Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature in the Library of Congress. In addition, Sklarew has published poems, stories, interviews, essays, articles, and reviews in more than five hundred publications.
Sklarew has given numerous presentations including readings, lectures, and performances during the course of her career as a writer and educator. Over the years, she has been recognized with awards and grants from a wide variety of organizations and institutions including the Poetry Society of America and PEN. She received the University Scholar/Teacher Award from American University. Significant activities there included serving as Director, Writer's Conferences, 1975-1980; Founder and Director, M.F.A. Program in Creative Writing, 1980-1982; and Chair, Department of Literature, 1995-1996.
These materials have been divided into six series.
Myra Sklarew donated a portion of her papers to the University of Maryland Libraries in March 2006 and additional materials in September 2008.
Correspondence originally located in Series 3, 4, and 6 was separated and interfiled with correspondence in Series 1. The original physical locations of these items were recorded on them. Manuscripts originally enclosed with correspondence of Series 1 were removed and filed within Series 5, Writings by Others. Paper clips, staples, and rubber bands were removed from the collection. When necessary, folded paper was flattened. Preservation photocopies were made of newspaper clippings and material on Thermofax paper. Fragile documents were placed in Mylar sleeves to prevent damage from handling. Oversized serial publications were separated and appropriately housed. The arrangement of the collection was created during processing.
Part of the Special Collections and University Archives