Skip to main content

Horace M. Kallen research files

Identifier: NS-02-15-01


These papers contain drafts, outlines, notes, and manuscripts authored by Horace Meyer Kallen (bulk 1930s-1960s), documenting his career as a founding professor of philosophy at the New School for Social Research (1919-1974). His papers also contain writings by others and research material in the form of offprints and printed journals. Many topics center on religion and his work with Jewish organizations during the 1950s-1960s.


  • 1900 - 1977
  • Majority of material found within 1930 - 1970



3 Cubic Feet (3 boxes)

Scope and Contents

These records are described by topic, title of lecture, article or other work, or course title and are arranged into three series: General; Writings and Research; and Writings by Others. Folder titles have been maintained as they were encountered by processing archivist.

The General series contains one folder of correspondence, City Planning Committee records, and a binder of short essays on aspects of New School history.

The bulk of these files document Kallen's scholarly research, writings, and instruction during the 1930s-1960s and contain writings in the form of course and paper outlines, notes, manuscripts, annotated typescripts by him and others; along with research material such as clippings, programs, journals, and other printed material. These files are titled and ordered by topic, title of lecture, article or other work, or what may be a course title. Many topics center around religion and Kallen's work with Jewish organizations, such as the World Jewish Council and Farband-Labor Zionist Order during the 1950s-1960s. Some undated notes and outlines contain Harvard blue books, possibly stemming from Kallen's time there as graduate student and lecturer. His teaching work at the New School is documented throughout these files, such as his class reading lists. Of note are drafts and correspondence related to his play, The Book of Job: as a Greek tragedy, restored by Horace M. Kallen.

The Writings by Others series consists of offprints, journals and other printed publications, along with unpublished reports and papers, covering topics in philosophy and the social sciences. They are arranged alphabetically by author or, in the absence of author, journal title. Although offprints and journals will also be found in the Writings and Research series, the items in this series were encountered without notes or accompanying documents. Languages of publication are divided evenly between English and German, with a smaller number in French. Some items are inscribed to Kallen. Stamps and ephemera found with these materials, as well as one publication post-dating Kallen's death, indicate that they may have originated elsewhere and were possibly added while this collection was housed in Fogelman Library.

Language of Materials

While the handwritten notes and Kallen's typed manuscripts in the collection are in English, published materials in the form of newspaper and magazine clippings, journal reprints, and reports are in English and in German. A lesser number of items are in French and in Yiddish.

Access Note

Collection is open for research use. Please contact for appointment.

Use Note

To publish images of material from this collection, permission must be obtained in writing from the New School Archives and Special Collections. Please contact:

Biographical / Historical

Horace Meyer Kallen (1882-1974) was a founder of the New School for Social Research in 1919 and a scholar and professor of philosophy. Before joining the New School, he received his PhD from Harvard University (1908), served as lecturer at Harvard, Clark College in Worchester, Massachussetts and the University of Wisconsin, from which he resigned due to his support for pacifists during the First World War. The other founders of the New School were also outspoken in their criticism of the United States' involvement in the conflict.

At the New School, Kallen's courses covered philosophy, psychology and esthetics, and he was known particularly for his lectures on "cultural pluralism." He was a member of the Zionist Organization of America and researched issues regarding the Jewish diaspora and Israel. During his career, he was also a member of the Mayor's Committee on City Planning, chairing the Subcommittee on Meetings and Exhibits.

Kallen died in Palm Beach, Florida on February 16, 1974.


Rutkoff, Peter M. and William B. Scott. New School: a history of the New School for Social Research, London: Collier Macmillan, 1986.

Organization and Arrangement

Organized in 3 series: 1. General, 1935-1959 2. Writings and research, circa 1930s-1970s 3. Writings by others, circa 1900-1977

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Transferred from the Raymond Fogelman Library to the New School Archives upon the establishment of the archives.

Related Materials

Two large collections of Kallen's papers are held by the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research (29.5 linear feet) and the American Jewish Archives (38 linear feet). Both contain materials pertaining to the New School for Social Research.

The Reuben Abel papers (NA.0003.01) in the New School Archives document the work of one of Kallen's students, who later became Kallen's teaching assistant.

Processing Information

Preliminary processing by Jennifer Ulrich, December 2014.

Guide to the Horace M. Kallen research files
New School Archives and Special Collections Staff
June 30, 2016
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note