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Jim Daniels papers

Identifier: MSS 215 large

Scope and Contents

The Jim Daniels papers (approximately 1976-2015) contain correspondence, clippings, audiovisual material, reviews, promotional material, drafts and published versions of his poetry, prose, and screenplays and journals he edited and contributed to, documenting his professional and artistic work.


  • Creation: 1976 - 2015

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Access

The material is stored offsite in Remote Storage. Please contact Special Collections 3 working days in advance if you wish to use it.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright is retained by the authors of the items in this collection, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law. For photocopy and duplication requests, please contact the Stephen O. Murray and Keelung Hong Special Collections, Michigan State University Libraries.

Biographical / Historical

James Raymond Daniels (b. 1956) is a professional writer from Detroit, Michigan. He earned a BA in English and Spanish from Alma College and an MFA in Creative Writing from Bowling Green State University. He is currently a professor of English at Carnegie Mellon University, where he has taught since 1981. His recent books include Birth Marks (2013) and Having a Little Talk with Capital P Poetry (2011), Eight Mile High (2014), and Trigger Man (2011). He has written four produced screenplays, including "The End of Blessings” and "No Pets." He won the Tillie Olsen Prize from the Working-Class Studies Association for "Street," a book of poems accompanying the photographs of Charlee Brodsky. He also won the Signpost Press chapbook contest for "On the Line" (1980), first prize from Passages North poetry contest for "My Father Worked Late" (1983), was a fellow of National Endowment for the Arts (1985), Wisconsin/Brittingham Prize for Poetry from University of Wisconsin Press for "Places/Everyone" (1985), Pennsylvania Council on the Arts literature fellowships (1987, 1990), and the Pushcart Prize for "Day of the Two Bodies" (1994). He has edited or co-edited four anthologies, including "Letters to America: Contemporary American Poetry on Race," and "American Poetry: The Next Generation." His poetry has been been featured on Garrison Keillor's "Writer's Almanac," Billy Collins' "Poetry 180" anthologies, Ted Kooser's "American Life in Poetry," Rita Dove's "Best American Poetry 2000" series. At Carnegie Mellon, he has received the Ryan Award for Excellence in Teaching, the Mark Gelfand Service Award for Educational Outreach, the Elliott Dunlap Smith Award for Teaching and Educational Service, and a Faculty Service Award from the Carnegie Mellon Alumni Association. As Daniels is quoted in CA: "Much of my poetry has focused on blue-collar life in my native Detroit. I feel that there is little poetry being written about the world that I come from and the people that I care about. I try to give a voice to those who are often shut out of poetry, to explore their lives both in and out of the workplace. If nothing else, I'm trying to say these people are important, that their lives have value and meaning."


49 Linear Feet (49 boxes) ; 27 x 40 x 13 cm.

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Collection acquired by purchase by MSU Special Collections from Jim Daniels in 1995.


There is an on-going agreement of transfer with Jim Daniels, with accurals regularly occuring.


The collection is stored offsite in Remote Storage. Please contact Special Collections 3 working days in advance to access it.

Processing Information

Initial processing information is unknown, Lydia Tang has updated the finding aid since 2015.

Sources consulted for the creation of the finding aid include "Jim Daniels." Carnegie Mellon faculty profile. Accessed December 2, 2015.

Finding Aid for the Jim Daniels papers
Finding aid prepared by MarcEdit, updated by Lydia Tang
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
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Revision Statements

  • January 2016: Collection partially reprocessed and finding aid updated

Repository Details

Part of the Stephen O. Murray and Keelung Hong Special Collections Repository

MSU Libraries
366 W. Circle Drive
East Lansing MI 48823 USA