January 31, 2024

Olive and Al: Zimring secures additional research support

Dr. Rishona Zimring, Professor of English, has received two more competitive grants for her project, “Olive and Al: A Story of Partnership in Life, Law, and Letters.” These new awards are on the heels of an American Philosophical Society Franklin Research Grant received last year in support of the same innovative project, a dual biography that recounts the untold story of Olive Rabe (1887-1968) and Aileen (Al) Fisher (1906-2002), two remarkable women who lived and worked together for decades in 20th-century America. Olive and Al will be the “biography of their partnership, and an appreciation of the intellectual, political, and artistic importance of 20th-century American women’s lives, work, and ideas.” It will be of interest to general audiences, as well as contribute to scholarship in law, women’s history, literary studies, and American intellectual and social history.

Dr. Zimring’s two new awards in support of this project are both short-term fellowships designed to provide scholars access to special collections, which she is using during her current sabbatical. First, a $2,000 competitive short-term fellowship at the New York Public Library (NYPL) allowed Dr. Zimring to conduct two weeks of research into the Rosika Schwimmer papers and Schwimmer-Lloyd Collection, including the Olive Rabe Papers. Second, Dr. Zimring was awarded a $1,600 Ezra Jack Keats/Janina Domanska Research Fellowship to conduct archival research in the de Grummond Children’s Literature Collection in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Aileen Fisher was a poet and children’s book author; materials in the de Grummond Collection will support Dr. Zimring’s extensive research into both her career and the creativity of post-WWII American children’s literature.

January 2024