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MS Thr 494

Nordell, Roderick. Roderick Nordell papers, 1948-2000: Guide.

Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University


Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Location: Harvard Depository
Call No.: MS Thr 494
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Nordell, Roderick.
Title: Roderick Nordell papers,
Date(s): 1948-2000.
Quantity: 1 collection (17 linear feet (53 boxes)
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Abstract: Clippings of articles by a long-time Christian Science Monitor critic and editor, Roderick Nordell, and programs from performances he attended, correspondence and other papers.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

2006MT-77r. Gift of Roderick Nordell, Cambridge, Massachusetts; received: 2000 December.

Processing Information:

Processed by: Rick Stattler

Conditions Governing Access:

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.
All of this collection (except for item (72)) is shelved offsite at the Harvard Depository and retrieval requires advance notice. Readers should check with Houghton Public Services staff to determine retrieval policies and times.

Preferred Citation for Publication:

Roderick Nordell Papers, 1948-2000 (MS Thr 494). Harvard Theatre Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Biographical / Historical

Hans Roderick Nordell (1925-2017) was a journalist, author, and retired editor. He graduated from Harvard University in 1948, received a B Litt at the University of Dublin in 1951, and spent most of his career as a writer and editor at the Christian Science Monitor. He wrote on a wide variety of topics during his career at the Monitor, with a particular emphasis on theater, jazz, books, and travel, and also contributed numerous family and humorous pieces to the paper's editorial and Home Forum pages. He held the following positions with the Monitor : 1948-1950, New York correspondent; 1951-1955, Staff correspondent; 1956-1964, Book editor; 1966-1967, Assistant feature editor; 1971-1972, Arts/Entertainment editor; 1974-1977, Assistant chief editorial writer; 1983-1985, Home Forum editor; 1986-1987, Feature editor; 1988-1993, Executive editor, World Monitor (the Monitor's monthly magazine)
Nordell was a native of Minnesota, and a resident for many years of Cambridge, Massachusetts. He married Joan Projansky, and had three children.



Organized into the following series:

Scope and Contents

The bulk of this collection consists of copies of Nordell's columns, editorials, and reviews in the Christian Science Monitor; and of programs for musical and theatrical performances he attended.
The small correspondence series reflects the variety of Nordell's journalistic work, including such diverse figures as Steve Allen, William F. Buckley, James Bryant Conant, Charlton Heston, Archibald MacLeish, John D. Rockefeller 3rd, Barbara Wertheim Tuchman, and E.B. White.
The compositions series consists mostly of clippings from the Christian Science Monitor. It also includes a smaller quantity of research files, manuscripts, and typescripts for both published and unpublished writings, most notably his 1951 thesis, "The Dramatic Practice and Theory of Sean O'Casey."
Many of the programs appear to be from performances which Nordell reviewed in print, and are annotated with his notes on the performances. The bulk of the programs are from Boston, Cambridge, and the surrounding area, but the series also includes numerous programs from New York City and some from Nordell's travels across the globe. The series also includes a smaller number of programs from exhibit openings, lectures, and other events.
The subject files series includes a set of papers read at the 1967 International Congress on Theatre Research; an audiocassette relating to a 1993 appearance by Quincy Jones at Harvard University; press releases, mostly dating from Nordell's term as Arts/Entertainment editor; and travel brochures and pamphlets.
The biographical miscellany series includes clippings, photographs, and programs relating to Nordell's career.


The majority of this collection is shelved offsite at the Harvard Depository. See access restrictions below for additional information.

Container List