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Barnard Center for Research on Women Feminist Ephemera Collection

Identifier: BCRW02

Collection Scope and Content Summary

This collections contain materials from over 1700 individuals, organizations, government agencies, and other creators collected by the Barnard Center for Research on Women (BCRW) as a part of their Birdie Goldsmith Ast Resource Collection. It includes correspondence, pamphlets, handbooks, manuscripts, university publications, zines, posters, flyers, magazines, newsletters, and clippings. Some notable topics include: Abortion, Human rights, Labor, Reproductive rights, Equality, Racism, Education, Feminism, Politics, Development, Careers, Poverty, Health, Sex, Birth control, Religion, Economics, Family, Law and Marriage.


  • Creation: 1906-2014
  • Creation: Majority of material found within [Bulk:1975-2001]


This collection has no restrictions.

Publication Rights

For more information on use and reproduction, please contact the Barnard Archives and Special Collections (

Reproduction Restrictions

Reproductions can be made for research purposes.


The Birdie Goldsmith Ast Resource Collection of the Barnard College Women’s Center (renamed the Barnard Center for Research on Women (BCRW)) was founded in 1973 with the research materials of Myra Josephs (Barnard ’28) and named after named after Ms. Joseph’s mother, an active suffragist and founding member of the League of Women Voters. A 1982 brochure described the collection’s purpose as “to provide space for some of the important new research about women sparked by the women’s movement.” By this time, the collection contained over 6,000 print items and had become known as one of the most important resources in the Northeast for materials on contemporary women’s issues. The collection contains hardbound and paperbound books; directories, bibliographies, and handbooks; newsletter, newspaper, and journal subscriptions; and ephemeral materials which includes article reprints, unpublished papers, unbound manuscripts, conference proceedings, reports, pamphlets, fact sheets, newspaper and magazine clippings, government documents, etc. Historically, the materials were catalogued and organized into 10 categories according to women’s issues: Arts and Culture, Education, Employment, General, Health, Legal Status, Other Countries, Sex Roles and Sex Differences, Violence and Sexual Exploitation, and Women’s Movement. The Collection has always been open to the public and has been used by students, scholars, journalists, researchers, and activists. Mirroring the purpose and activities of the Barnard College Women’s Center and feminist in orientation, the Resource Collection focuses on emerging issues and changing interpretations in the women’s movement. The Resource Collection preferenced noncommercial materials that have limited circulation and are usually quickly out-of-print, which often contain and describe emerging issues before they have a recognizable label of identification (i.e. “battered women”). As a result, the Collection contains the back issues of women’s movement periodicals from the 1970’s, which are now no longer in print. Additionally, the Resource Collection includes what may be described as the “initial outpouring” of commentary on emerging women’s issues within the newspapers, newsletters, flyers, zines and journals of feminist presses, universities, individuals, organized interest groups, and the special issues of magazines and journals traditionally not collected by libraries.


51.08 Linear Feet (110 hollinger boxes, 1 half hollinger box, 5 banker boxes)




This collection contains 1700+ folders of feminist ephemera collected by the Barnard Center for Research on Women on topics such as women, gender, activism, labor, sexuality, healthcare, marriage, psychology, development, and law.

Collection Arrangement

The collection is arranged by creator title and in alphabetical order.

Physical Location

This collection is located in the Barnard Archives and Special Collections, Barnard Library. To use this collection, please contact the Barnard Archives and Special Collections at 212.854.4079 or

Other Finding Aids

Item-level index with an expanded list of subject headings available at the BCRW Archives:

Please note, all items are not described or included in the BCRW Archives. Please refer to the Barnard Archives finding aid for the complete folder-level container list.

If using the BCRW Archives, use the 'Advanced Search' function using the three dots drop down menu next to the 'Search'button to search specific keyword terms to locate items in the collection. When viewing items of interest please note the Identifer, ex: BCRW archives, P box 5, folder "Push: a publication by and for queer women/ queer feminist subversions." Use the Identifier to locate the folder name and box number in the Barnard Archives finding aid.

Acquisition Information

Transferred from the Barnard Center for Research on Women.


No additions are expected.

Processing History

This collection was processed and the finding aid written by Zakiya Collier in June 2019. Descriptive Rules Used: Finding aid adheres to that prescribed by Describing Archives: A Content Standard. Finding aid written in English

Guide to the Barnard Center for Research on Women Feminist Ephemera Collection
Zakiya Collier
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Barnard Archives and Special Collections Repository

3009 Broadway
New York NY 10027 United States