AUSTIN, Texas—The Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center at The University of Texas at Austin holds the archives of three of the 17 authors on the longlist for the 2005 Man Booker Prize for Fiction, an internationally recognized literary prize for British and Commonwealth fiction.
The books on this year’s longlist include Julian Barnes’s “Arthur and George” (2005), Sebastian Barry’s “A Long Long Way” (2005) and Dan Jacobson’s “All For Love” (2005). The Ransom Center holds works of each of the authors in its collections.
“While their selection might ratify our judgment and foresight, there are a few others on the list whose archives would be a welcome addition to our collections,” quipped Thomas F. Staley, director of the Ransom Center. “They are in our focus.”
The Ransom Center’s papers of writer Barnes span from his first published fiction “A Self-Possessed Woman” (1975) to the novel, “Love, etc.” (2000) and include such novels as “Metroland” (1980), “Flaubert’s Parrot” (1984) and “Talking It Over” (1991). Also included are crime novels Barnes wrote under the pseudonym Dan Kavanagh.
Describing his papers, Barnes wrote, “Everything I do from the moment I am faced by what I recognize as the possibility—or pre-possibility—of a novel is contained within the archive. I have never thrown away more than the occasional (more or less duplicate) page of typescript. My archive therefore contains 98 or 99 percent of all the marks I make on paper as a novelist.”
The Ransom Center acquired Barnes’s archive in 2000.
The center’s collection of Irish novelist and playwright Barry, acquired in 2001, includes literary papers, drafts of Barry’s published and unpublished works, illustrations, personal and business correspondence, notebooks, photographs, personal papers and clippings.
The center obtained additional Barry material, mostly correspondence, in 2005.
The Ransom Center’s Jacobson collection was acquired in 1966 and added to in the early 1990s.
Most of Jacobson’s works from 1954 to 1992 are represented in the collection. For some works, multiple drafts and corrected proofs reveal Jacobson’s revision processes. In particular, the evolution of many of his short stories can be traced.
The shortlist of six authors will be announced on Sept. 8 and the winner will be announced on Oct. 10 at Guildhall, London.
Information about the Man Booker Prize, established in 1969, can be found online.
The Ransom Center is one of the world’s finest cultural institutions, housing 36 million manuscripts, five million photographs, one million books, more than 100,000 works of art and design, and extensive film and performing arts collections.
For more information contact: Jennifer Tisdale, Harry Ransom Center, 512-471-8949.