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Papers Hanna Papanek (1927-2017)1964-1999

Identity Area

Collection IDIIAV00000404
Language ListFinding aid is in English
Language of MaterialEnglish
GeoCountryUnited States
Extent1 m.
Access and UseNot restricted.
Preferred CitationPapers Hanna Papanek, inv.no …, Collection International Archives for the Women's Movement (IAV), in Atria, Institute on Gender Equality and Women’s History

Biographical Note

Born on January 24, 1927 in Berlin as Hanna Kaiser, died on December 16, 2017 in Lexington MA; she was the daughter of Alexander Stein and Eleanor Kaiser; Hanna and her family, committed to Democratic Socialism, had to go into exile in Czechoslovakia when the Nazis came to power in Germany in 1934; her second exile was in France; in Paris she found kindred spirits in a youth group of other Democratic Socialists, including her future husband Gustav Papanek; she came to the United States in 1940, again fleeing Nazi persecution; in New York City, Hanna graduated from Hunter High School, received her Bachelor’s degree from Brooklyn College,. and was one of the first women to receive a PhD in Social Relations from Harvard University (1962); she was a pioneer feminist before the movement became widespread; a scholar and academic, she held appointments at Harvard, Boston University, University of California-Berkeley, and University of Indonesia; her ground breaking study of the two person career presaged the understanding of the role of many women in their husband’s careers; Hanna published extensively, often writing about women’s issues; she wrote and edited a number of books; she also wrote a political memoir of her family Elly und Alexander published in Germany; her adventurous life gave her insight into the role of women within different cultures; in the 1950’s, she lived four years in Karachi Pakistan and in the 1970s four years in Jakarta, Indonesia; she formed deep friendships in those countries and studied the limitations placed on women; she did path-breaking work on the role of female seclusion (purdah) in enhancing family status; in 2004 Hanna joined First Parish in Bedford Unitarian Universalist; she found its Unitarian Universalist principles mirrored the principles she adopted as a young woman and held throughout her life; she was an active participant at First Parish giving talks and speaking her mind at “talkback” sessions.


Books, monographs, articles, book reviews, reports and conference papers, mostly on women and development and women and exile1964-1996, 1999; curriculum vitae 1999.