Call Number:  MS-23 
Name:  An Inventory of the Papers of Joyce Ann Joyce (1949-) held in the Valdosta State University Archives 
Dates:  1950(?)- present 
Size:  2 boxes;  236 items 


Joyce Ann Joyce (1949- ) was born in Valdosta, Georgia; attended Valdosta State College (1967-70) where she earned a BA in English, then went on to the University of Georgia for a  MA in English (1970-72) and a PhD in American Literature (1974-79). She served as instructor (1972-74) at Valdosta State College and a  teaching assistant (74-78) and  instructor (78-79) at the University of Georgia. She lectured at the Smithsonian and the NEH in summers between 1980-85; served as Assistant/Associate Professor at University of Maryland, College Park  (1979-89) before joining the University of Nebraska as a full professor (1990-1992). At Chicago State University (1992-97) she served as Associate Director of the Gwendolyn Brooks Center; went on to become Chairperson of the Black American Studies Department, Chicago State University. She chaired the African American Studies Department of Temple University from1997 to 2001, and she currently serves in the Temple University Women Studies Department.

She is the author of numerous books and articles and has made a considerable contribution to the fields of African American studies, American literature, Women's Studies, and Culture Studies.  Her books of criticism include  Ijala: Sonia Sanchez and the African Poetic Tradition, Richard Wright's Art of Tragedy, Warriors, Conjurers, and Priests.  She collaborated with Arthur P. Davis and J Saunders Redding in editing a two volume anthology of African American Literature, The New Cavalcade.  She also edited the journalWarpland.    She is the author of numerous articles, conference papers, book chapters, lectures and  presentations.  

Joyce Joyce received numerous awards and honors including Valdosta State College's Annie Powe Hopper Award, Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities, Who's Who Among International Authors and Writers, Who's Who Among International Women Writers, the Valdosta State University Distinguished Alumnus Award, The World Who is Who of Women and the Shirley Graham Dubois Award, the George Kent Award for Literary Criticism, the American Book Award for Literary Criticism, among others. 

Joyce's life is an extraordinary one, both personally and professionally.  She graduated in the last year of segregation in Valdosta and was one of the early African American students at Valdosta State.  She was the first African American winner of the Annie Powe Hopper award for achievement, and after her Masters Degree she came back as one of the first African American faculty members here.  Her many scholarly achievements have brought her international acclaim and she works with and corresponds with scholars across several continents.  Through her career she has been a pioneer, as she was at Valdosta, occasionally meeting resistance and opposition, but for many, especially her students, she served as a friend, mentor, and beacon of hope.  All of these reactions to her are reflected in her correspondence and papers.

Scope and Content:

The Joyce Paper Collection consists mainly of correspondence with colleagues and students.  It also includes  a few photographs, articles and copies of all of her books. Although some items date to Joyce's childhood in Valdosta, the bulk of the papers are from the early 1980's to 2001. Most of the correspondence discusses works in progress by her or her colleagues.  The most prolific correspondent is the prominent Richard Wright scholar Michel Fabre,  who seems to have had a significant impact on Joyce's writings. Other important sets of letters from critics include Annette Kolodny and her collaborator Arthur P. Davis.  Among Joyce's letters are those from such prominent African American writers as Gwendolyn Brooks, Sonia Sanchez, and Alice Walker.  Included are also many letters regarding her applications for vacancies to various universities.  Occasional items point to controversies, especially with colleagues who work and those who object to her strong opinions. Her generosity and sense of humor led to numerous cards from colleagues and students thanking her for a favor she had extended or gift she had given, often her latest publications. 

The collection consists of two series. The first is Biography, Writings, and Publicity:         

  • First is biographical material and clippings.  These include photographs, and articles about Joyce at various times in her professional career.  Next are her writings, including her books, vitae, published articles, and letters to the editor and occasional poetry. Publicity material follows, including conference announcement to those conferences to which she contributed. 

The second is correspondence:

  • The largest series by far is correspondence and this has two subdivisions. The first part of correspondence is folders arranged chronologically by date of composition.  The second are folders arranged by name of correspondent.  If more than one letter exists from a correspondent, those are in a folder arranged by that correspondent's name.  

The items in each folder are enumerated in a list that is available by clicking on the name of the folder.  Descriptive information for each item is included.

Items Removed from Collection:

Books: IJALA, Richard Wright's Art of Tragedy, Warpland, Vols. 1 & 2, Warriors, Conjurors and Priests.  Copies of these books are in the Display Case.  Other copies of most of these are available in our catalog or in Archives. 

Photographs:  Item 212: Oversized photograph of Joyce  in Map Case, copy in Display Case; 

Display material:   Some material from the collection has been scanned, copied, and placed in the Display case.  Other parts of a display tracing her VSC student days and career are available in Archives.  Material drawn from VSU Archives sources.

Online Display Available

Subject Headings: 

Joyce, Joyce Ann Valdosta State College English Department Annie Powe Hopper Award 
African American Literature Brooks, Gwendolyn  Bryer, Jackson R.  
Chicago State University Davis, Arthur P.  Davis, Olga  
Fabre, Michel  Ferguson, Elaine  Fitzpatrick, Kathleen  
Free, William (Bill) James, Joni L.  Kennedy, Deatrice  
Kinnamon, Kenneth  Kolodny, Annette  Miller, Ethelbert  
Provost, Bill  Sanchez, Sonia  Sasay, Chernoh M.  
Simmons, Ruth J.  Taylor, Eleanor  Third World Press 
Walker, Alice Valencia, Willa  Ward, Jerry  
Williams, John A.  Wright, Stephen Caldwell  University of Georgia--English Department 
University of Nebraska Chicago State University University of Maryland, College Park 
Gwendolyn Brooks Center Temple University Women's Studies 
Ijala: Sonia Sanchez and the African Poetic Tradition Richard Wright's Art of Tragedy Warriors, Conjurers, and Priests 
The New Cavalcade Warpland Wright, Richard 


The papers include the following parts: 
Please select the folder title to view an item-level inventory of the folder itself.

Box 1:  Joyce Ann Joyce: Biography, Publications, and Correspondence  

[Folder 1] Joyce Papers: Biography and Clippings   [Folder 2] Joyce Papers: Vitae and Articles   [Folder 3] Joyce Papers: Books and Articles in Collection   [Folder 4] Joyce Papers: Letters to the Editor   [Folder 5] Joyce Papers: Poetry   [Folder 6] Joyce Papers: Conference Advertisements, etc.   [Folder 7] Joyce Papers: Publicity Materials   [Folder 8] Joyce Papers: Correspondence 1980's to 1991   [Folder 9] Joyce Papers: Correspondence 1992-1993 
Folder 9.5] Joyce Papers: Correspondence 1994-1995   [Folder 10] Joyce Papers: Correspondence 1995-1996   [Folder 11] Joyce Papers: Correspondence 1997-1999

Box 2:   Joyce Ann Joyce: Correspondence  

[Folder 12] Joyce Papers: Correspondence 2000-2001 
[Folder 13] Joyce Papers: Correspondence no date 
[Folder 14] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Gwendolyn Brooks 
[Folder 15] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Jackson R. Bryer 
[Folder 16] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Chicago State University 
[Folder 17] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Arthur P. Davis 
[Folder 18] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Olga Davis 
[Folder 19] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Michel Fabre 
[Folder 20] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Elaine Ferguson 
[Folder 21] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Kathleen Fitzpatrick 
[Folder 22] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--William Free (Bill) 
[Folder 23] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Joni L. James 
[Folder 24] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Deatrice Kennedy 
[Folder 25] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Kenneth Kinnamon 
[Folder 26] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Annette Kolodny 
[Folder 27] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Ethelbert Miller 
[Folder 28] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Bill Provost 
[Folder 29] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Sonia Sanchez 
[Folder 30] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Chernoh M. Sasay 
[Folder 31] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Ruth J. Simmons 
[Folder 32] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Eleanor Taylor 
[Folder 33] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Third World Press 
[Folder 34] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Willa Valencia 
[Folder 35] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Jerry Ward 
[Folder 36] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--John A. Williams 
[Folder 37] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Stephen Caldwell Wright 
[Folder 38] Joyce Papers: Correspondence--Anonymous

Processing Date: 6/2002 by Dick Kawooya of the VSU MLIS program and Deborah S. Davis.