Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Olive Schreiner Letters Project and the Olive Schreiner Letters Online

Souith African writer, Olive Schreiner (1855-1920) is one of the world’s great feminist writers and social theorists, with her novels including The Story of an African Farm and From Man to Man, her allegories including Dreams and Dream Life and Real Life, and her political treatises including Woman and Labour. She also wrote over 5500 exceptionally important letters, the earliest dating from 1871, the last written just a few days before her death in December 1920.

Schreiner’s letters – all of them, full and complete just as she wrote them – will be published in January 2012 and will be freely available world-wide in a fully-searchable electronic edition. The Olive Schreiner Letters Online will provide a new, detailed, and unique electronic resource for feminist research, women’s studies and gender studies.

The Olive Schreiner Letters Online will be hosted at from January 2012 on and will provide fully searchable transcriptions of Schreiner’s 5500+ extant letters located in archives across Europe, the US and South Africa, as well as a detailed editorial interpretive apparatus around these. The Olive Schreiner Letters Project has been funded by the UK’s ESRC (RES-062-23-1286) and the letters are being published by the renowned electronic research resources publisher HRIOnline. The research team includes Liz Stanley, Helen Dampier, Andrea Salter, David Shepherd, Michael Meredith and Kiera Chapman.

Schreiner’s letters are of exceptional interest because containing her unfolding thinking about her writing and publishing activities, and also her developing analysis and social theorising around the crucially important topics that preoccupied her, including: metropolitan feminism and socialism, prostitution and its analysis, imperialism and the ‘scramble for Africa’, war & peace, changing understandings of ‘race’ and capital, intersectional theorising around women, gender and ‘race’, the South African War (1899-1902) & its concentration camps & women’s relief organisations, governance & federation, international women's franchise campaigns, labour issues, international feminist networks, the Great War, diplomacy & pacifism, and much more as well.

Information about the Schreiner Letters Project is available at: Many Project publications are available to download and there is also information about Schreiner and her core concerns, including downloadable copies of her major publications.
If you would like to hear more about Olive Schreiner Letters Online and receive information about activities and events from across the globe concerning letters and other forms of life representation more broadly, please subscribe to the Lives & Letters mailing list by emailing Alternatively, you can self-subscribe to the mailing list by sending a blank email to  with the following in the subject: sub lives-and-letters.

No comments: