The Lawrence E. Harvey Research Papers on Samuel Beckett were a 1984 gift to the Dartmouth College Library from Professor Emeritus and Mrs. Lawrence E. Harvey. Professor Harvey was a friend of Samuel Beckett and an acknowledged authority on Beckett's works; his book Samuel Beckett, Poet and Critic, won honorable mention in the 1970 James Russell Lowell Prize competition for best book of the year on literature.
Lawrence E. Harvey was born February 13, 1925 in Denver, Ccolorado. He graduated from Western Reserve University in 1948, studied at the Sorbonne forr a year, and in 1951, he earned an M.A. degree from Harvard University. In 1955, after attaining his Ph.D., also from Harvard, Harvey joined the Dartmouth College faculty. During his years at the College, Harvey conceived the Foreign Study and Language Study Abroad programs, helped develop the Comparitive Literature program, served as Chairman of the Humanities Division, Associate Dean of the Faculty for Humanities, and in 1970-71, as Dean of the Faculty. In 1972 he was awarded the Edward Tuck Professorship in French. Harvey Retired from the College in 1981; he died in February 1988.
Professor Harvey became interested in the works of Samuel Beckett in the late 1950's. He met Beckett through a mutual acquaintance in 1961, and the two became friends. Many of the original manuscripts in the Beckett collection (MS-122) were gifts to Harvey from Beckett, and subsequently from Harvey to the Dartmouth College Library. Samuel Beckett took a string interest in the writing of Harvey's book, Samuel Beckett, Poet and Critic (1970); he provided many insights and submitted to numerous interviews to provide Harvey with background material. Notes on some of these conversations are incuded in the colleaction.