Guide to the Frieda Fligelman Papers

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Overview of the Collection

Creator: Fligelman, Frieda, 1890-1978
Title: Frieda Fligelman Papers
Dates: 1927-1984 ( inclusive )
Quantity: 1 linear foot
Collection Number: Mss 184
Summary: Frieda Fligelman was a linguist, sociologist, poet and advocate for women's issues who lived in Montana. The collection includes correspondence, writings, and research dated 1801-1984. Also included are postcards, photographs and pamphlets of the same era.
Repository: Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library
Archives and Special Collections

The University of Montana--Missoula
Missoula, MT 59812

Languages: Materials are in English 
Sponsor: Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Biographical Note

Frieda Fligelman was a linguist, sociologist, poet and a well-known advocate for women's issues. She pioneered the study of "linguistic sociology," an evaluation of the meaning and value of words used in a sociological context. She believed language should be studied as an environment and national group interest rather than simply as meaning and form. Fligelman authored many articles and papers outlining the depth and importance of language. Her work included a book titled The Richness of African Negro Languages, which illustrated the principles of linguistic sociology.

Fligelman faced much frustration over the general disinterest in her work. She fought to have her writings published and her theories accepted by the sociologists and linguists of her day. Fligelman was politically active and participated in establishing a program providing relief for victims of anti-Semitic persecution during WW II. She showed concern over the racial issues of her time and society's attempt to limit immigration. Fligelman's studies in the value of language emphasized the vitality of a multi-ethnic culture and the importance of her sociological theories in understanding that culture.

Content Description

The collection includes correspondence, writings, and research dated 1801-1984. Also included are postcards, photographs and pamphlets of the same era. The collection provides an illustration of pro and anti-war propaganda and the lives of Jewish refugees during World War II. Personal handwritten notations and opinions are also part of the collection and appear on the back of much of the correspondence.

Use of the Collection

Restrictions on Access :  

Researchers must use collection in accordance with the policies of Archives and Special Collections, the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, and The University of Montana--Missoula.

Restrictions on Use :  

Researchers are responsible for using in accordance with 17 U.S.C. and any other applicable statutes. Copyright not transferred to The University of Montana.

Preferred Citation :  

[Name of document or photograph number], Frieda Fligelman Papers, Archives and Special Collections, Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, The University of Montana--Missoula.

Administrative Information

Arrangement :

The collection is divided into four series:

Series I: Correspondence, 4 folders, 1927-1975

Series II: Writings, 8 folders, 1932-1984

Series III: Research, 15 folders, 1927-1984

Series IV: Photographs, 3 pieces, undated

Custodial History :  

This collection remained in the possession of Frieda Fligelman and her estate until donation to the K. Ross Toole Archives.

Acquisition Information :  

Gift of the Frieda Fligelman Estate through Professor Jon Driessen, 1978.

Processing Note :  

The actions of the original processors are unknown. The collection was arranged chronologically with photos interspersed within the correspondence and writings. The collection was reprocessed and re-described in 1998, maintaining the original arrangement except photographs were transferred to the general photograph collection and designated as a separate series.

Separated Materials :  

The photographs in Series IV were transferred to the archives general photograph collection in 1998.

Related Materials :  

There are oral history interviews with Fligelman in the Montana Women's Oral History Collection, OH 49.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series I:  Correspondence , 1927-1975
4 folders

This series consists of various correspondence including letters from World War II Jewish refugees, letters of application and introduction, as well as documents referring to various peace organizations and upcoming presentations of professional papers. Some letters are written in French and German.

The series is arranged chronologically.
1/1 General Correspondence , 1927-1950
1/2 General Correspondence , 1951-1975
1/3 General Correspondence , undated
1/4 General Correspondence, Personal and Clippings

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Series II:  Writings , 1932-1984
8 folders

This series includes writings dealing with Frieda Fligelman's theory of linguistic sociology. It provides an outline of the theory. Also included to illustrate how the theory works is an analysis of George Orwell's 1984. The series also has personal notes and clippings.

1/5 Writings , 1932-1933
1/6 Writings , 1934
1/7 Writings , 1958
1/8 Writings , 1962
1/9 Writings , 1968-1969
1/10 Writings , 1974
1/11 Writings , 1984
1/12 Writings , undated

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Series III:  Research , 1927-1984
15 folders

The series consists primarily of the writings of varied authors on sociology and linguistics. This part of the collection also includes several pamphlets discussing the involvement of the United States in World War II. Many of these pamphlets also address other political issues of the time.

2/1 Research for 1801 , undated
2/2 Research , 1927
2/3 Research , 1931, 1936, 1938
2/4 Research , 1939
2/5 Research , 1940
2/6 Research , 1948
2/7 Research , 1950-1953
2/8 Research , 1955-1956
2/9 Research , 1961
2/10 Research , 1971
2/11 Research , 1972
2/12 Research , 1974
2/13 Research , 1974
2/14 Research , 1984
2/15 Research , undated

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Series IV:  Photographs , undated
3 pieces

This series consists of three photographs: one of Fligelman and two of unknown women. All are undated.

98-2431: Frieda Fligelman , undated
98-2432: Unknown woman facing camera , undated
98-2433: Unknown woman facing light , undated

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This collection is indexed under the following headings in the online catalog. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

  • Occupations :
  • Linguists--Montana--Helena
  • Women sociologists--Montana--Helena
  • Subject Terms :
  • Sociolinguistics
  • World War, 1939-1945--Jews
  • World War, 1939-1945--Propaganda
  • World War, 1939-1945--Refugees
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Photographs

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