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New School press release collection

Identifier: NS-03-01-07


This collection contains press releases issued by The New School (formerly, the New School for Social Research) over a three-decade span. The press releases provide a detailed accounting of courses, events, faculty appointments, and the addition of new programs and divisions at the university, including announcements related to Parsons School of Design following its affiliation with The New School in 1970.


  • 1933 - 1982
  • Majority of material found within 1946 - 1977



2.6 Cubic Feet (2 boxes and 1 folder)

Language of Materials


Scope and Content of Collection

This collection consists exclusively of press releases, beginning with an announcement of the launch of the Graduate Faculty (the academic division now known as the New School for Social Research) in 1933 and ending in 1982 with the inauguration of Jonathan F. Fanton as university president. Over this forty-five year period the press releases provide a detailed accounting of the goings-on at The New School. The events noted in the press releases include faculty appointments and honors, the launch of new divisions and programs at The New School, exhibition openings, programs, concerts, lectures, and other events. Many of the press releases describe specific classes and workshops. When press releases document notable speakers, abstracts of speeches are frequently appended to the release.

While the collection begins in 1933 and ends in 1982, the years immediately following the end of World War II through 1977 are the mostly comprehensively documented. Additionally, the press releases only document the original New School (including its graduate social sciences division); Parsons School of Design is not mentioned until its affiliation with The New School in 1970, while Mannes College of Music's affiliation with The New School in 1989 places it out of the scope of this collection.

Access Restrictions

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

The entire collection is also available online through The New School Archives Digital Collections database.

Use Restrictions

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

Historical Note

Through a range of successive administrative units, including the Publicity Office, Office of Public Information, and Communications, The New School has issued press releases to local and national news outlets from at least 1933 through the present day.

For many years, course and program promotion was often simultaneously carried out by instructors, whose livelihoods were directly linked to student enrollment. Under the leadership of Agnes De Lima beginning in 1940, the Publicity Office attempted to introduce standards and policies and to establish consistency across the institution. The school also sometimes employed publicity firms, such as Fizdale, Inc., to write and place features in targeted publications.

The New School Associates, the President's Office, and the Public Relations Office in part performed functions that overlapped with those of the Publicity Office. Each of these departments were at various times responsible for producing press releases. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, leading up to and just after De Lima's resignation, during a time of general administrative upheaval and self-analysis across The New School, attempts were made to clarify and professionalize these overlapping activities. New personnel were hired, certain responsibilites combined into a single office, others separated out. For a time, names of offices and the division of responsibilities shifted monthly.

The New School Office of Public Information was the successor to the New School Publicity Office, renamed in 1957. Until at least the 1990s, New School divisions conducted independent public relations and course promotion activities, although concerted efforts at centralized oversight are in evidence from the late 1960s onward.

Organization and Arrangement

Arranged in chronological order.

Custodial History

A large portion of the press releases in this collection formerly comprised a series in the New School Publicity Office records (NS.03.01.05). Much of the remainder of the collection was separated from a large accession of records transferred from The New School President's Office in 2015.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The staff of the New School Archives and Special Collections assembled this collection from multiple office transfers.

Related Materials

The New School Archives holds the New School Publicity Office records (NS.03.01.05), the New School Office of Public Information records (NS.03.01.08), the George Calderaro New School Office of Communications records (NS.03.01.03), and the New School Publicity Scrapbook collection (NS.03.01.01). Press releases exclusively concerning Parsons School of Design will be found in the Parsons School of Design administrative and other offices collection (pre-2008 accessions) (PC.03.01.01).

Events textually documented in the press releases may also be visually documented in The New School photograph collection (NS.04.01.01).

Guide to the New School press release collection
New School Archives and Special Collections Staff
August 28, 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description