Hans Speier Papers, 1922-1989
- The Hans Speier Papers primarily focus on Speier's career in the U.S. after his emigration. The collection includes biographical materials, including family documents and correspondence; autobiographical writings, manuscripts and typescripts; The RAND Corporation materials; typescripts by other authors, Nazi propaganda; anti-Nazi propaganda; Allied Forces Intelligence reports and memoranda; notes and materials on various topics; and political pamphlets.
- 16.5 cubic ft.
- English , German .
- Preferred citation:
- Preferred citation for this material is as follows: and Identification of specific item, series, box, folder, Hans Speier Papers, 1922-1989. M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University at Albany, State University of New York (hereafter referred to as the Speier Papers).
Access and Use
- Conditions Governing Access:
Access to this record group is unrestricted.
The copyright interests in these materials have not been transferred to the University Libraries. Copyright first resided with Hans Speier and, upon his death, passed to his daughter Sybil Barten.
The researcher assumes full responsibility for conforming with the laws of copyright. Whenever possible, the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives will provide information about copyright owners and other restrictions, but the legal determination ultimately rests with the researcher. Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be discussed with the Head of Special Collections and Archives.
- Scope and Content:
The Hans Speier Papers, 1922-1989, primarily focus on Speier's career in the United States after his emigration to the United States in 1933. A small number of documents for both Speier and his wife, Lisa Griesbach Speier, date from the pre-U.S. period, 1922-1933. Early materials are in German, with post-1933 materials predominately in English.
The collection is divided into 10 series: 1) Biographical materials, including family documents and correspondence, 1922-1984; 2) Autobiographical writings, 1945-1989; 3) Correspondence files, 1911-1988; 4) Manuscripts and typescripts, ca. 1920-1987; 5) The RAND Corporation materials, 1948-1988; Miscellaneous typescripts by other authors, 1941-1982; 6) Miscellaneous typescripts by other authors, 1941-1982; 7) Nazi propaganda, 1941-1944; Anti-Nazi propaganda, 1943-1944; Allied Forces Intelligence Reports and memoranda, 1940-1948; 8) Notes and materials on various topics; and 9) Note cards;and 10) Political pamphlets, 1934-1970. Series 4 is further divided into two sub-series: typescripts of books written or edited by Speier, and typescripts of shorter writings, including poetry, short stories and essayistic writings. Series 5 is also divided into two sub-series: Hans Speier's log notes (diary entries) and the essayistic writings.
The correspondence files contain correspondence with colleagues and leading scholars of the day, including Max Ascoli, Reinhard Bendix, Arvid Brodersen, Lewis A. Coser, Alexander George, Herbert Goldhamer, Joseph Goldsen, Fred C. Iklé, Alvin Johnson, Paul Kecskemeti, Henry J. Kellermann, Ernst Kris, Nathan Leites, M. Rainer Lepsius, Hans Staudinger and Leo Strauss. Also represented in the collection is a lengthy correspondence with co-editors of the three-volume work Propaganda and Communication in World History Harold Lasswell and Daniel Lerner, as well as correspondence with individual contributors to the volumes.
Two additional series should be noted: The RAND Corporation materials (Series 5) and the Nazi propaganda and anti-Nazi propaganda and intelligence materials (Series 7). The RAND Corporation materials span four decades and document Speier's important career as organizer and Head of the Social Science Division of the RAND Corporation from 1948-1960 and a member of the RAND Research Council from 1960-1968. During those years he wrote and directed numerous studies for RAND and the texts of many of the position papers, memoranda, lecture texts and essays are present in the collection. Included in the Nazi and anti-Nazi propaganda materials is a collection of rare leaflets prepared by the Psychological Warfare Branch of the U.S. Army and disseminated to enemy troops in Italy in 1943-1944.
In addition to the numerous texts written by Speier during his years at The RAND Corporation, the collection also contains numerous texts of essays, as well as typescript and manuscript versions of books, in particular the monograph Die Angestellten vor dem Nationalsozialismus (1977) and his autobiographical work From the Ashes of Disgrace: A Journal from Germany, 1945-1955.
- Biographical / Historical:
During his lifetime Hans Speier was distinguished by two very distinct careers. Speier was a lecturer in political sociology and economics in Germany (1931-1933) before emigrating to the U.S. to accept a position as lecturer and professor of political sociology on the newly formed Graduate Faculty of the New School for Social Research in New York (1933-1942, 1947-1948), lecturing summers at the University of Illinois (1941) and the University of Michigan (1941). Speier interrupted his university career for one in government service and research, but returned to teaching in 1969 at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst (1969-1973), where he held the title of Robert M. MacIver Professor of Sociology and Government.
Between 1942 and 1948, Speier served in the Foreign Broadcast Intelligence Service of the Federal Communications Commission (later Chief of the Central European Section), advisor on propaganda policy to the Director of the Overseas Branch, Office of War Information, and eventually became Associate Chief of the State Department's Occupied Areas Division. In 1948, Speier joined the staff of The Rand Corporation in Santa Monica, California, first serving as the Organizer and Head of the Social Science Division from 1948 to 1960, later becoming a member of the Rand Research Council from 1960-1968.
Speier's research interests focus on the political implications of military affairs and the influence of military power on the behavior of governments in the conduct of his foreign policies. He authored or co-edited numerous books and articles on these subjects, including German Radio Propaganda (with Ernst Kris, 1944), Social Order and the Risks of War (1952), West German Leadership and Foreign Policy (with W. Davison, 1957), German Rearmament and Atomic War (1957), Divided Berlin: The Anatomy of Soviet Political Blackmail (1961), Die Angestellten vor dem Nationalsozialismus (1977; English title: German White Collar Workers and the Rise of Hitler), and Propaganda and Communication in World History (co-edited with Harold Lasswell and Daniel Lerner, 3 vols., 1979-1980). He also published his translation of Grimmelshausen's Courage, the Adventuress and the False Messiah (1964), as well his autobiographical account, From the Ashes of Disgrace: A Journal from Germany 1945-1955 (1981).
Speier was married twice, first in 1929 to Lisa (Luise) Griesbach, with whom he had two children, Sybil D. and Steven W. Lisa Speier died in 1965 and Speier married his second wife Margit in February 1967. Hans Speier, the last surviving member of the famed Graduate Faculty of the New School for Social Research, died at the age of 85 on February 17, 1990 while vacationing in Sarasota, Florida.
1905 Born on February 3 in Berlin, Germany; son of Adolf and Anna Person Speier. 1923-1928 Studied Economics, Modern History and Sociology at the Universities of Berlin and Heidelberg. 1928 Received Dr. Phil. degree from the University of Heidelberg, where he was the assistant to Professor Emil Lederer. 1928-1930 Social Science editor at Ullstein Publishing House, Berlin. 1929 August 30, married Lisa (Luise) Griesbach (two children, Sybil D. and Steven W.) 1931-1933 Lecturer in Political Sociology at the College for Politics (Hochschule für Politik), Berlin and Assistant in the Department of Economics, University of Berlin. Editor of the Archiv für Sozialwissenschaft und Sozialpolitik. 1933 September, emigrated to the U.S. 1933-1942 Professor of Sociology, Graduate Faculty, New School for Social Research, New York. 1936 (Summer) Visiting Professor, University of Illinois. Publication of The Salaried Employee in German Society in mimeographed form by Columbia University as WPA project (a work begun by Speier in 1932 and eventually published in its entirety over 40 years later as Die Angestellten vor dem Nationalsozialismus). 1939 Co-edited and co-authored War in Our Time with Alfred Kahler 1940 April 20, became naturalized U.S. citizen. 1941 (Summer) Visiting Professor, University of Michigan. 1941-1942 Co-Director of Research Project on Totalitarian Communication, which was financed for two years by the Rockefeller Foundation for training of Rockefeller Research Fellows and study of classified British materials (monitored German broadcasts and British foreign broadcast analyses). 1942-1944 Section Chief and later Acting Chief of Foreign Broadcast Intelligence Service in the Federal Communications Commission, Washington, D.C. 1944 Co-authored with Ernst Kris German Radio Propaganda 1944-1945 Propaganda Policy Adviser to the Chief of the Overseas Branch of the Office of War Information, Washington, D.C. 1945 October 13 - December 2, trip to Germany for Office of War Information. January 1946-September 1947 Associate Chief (Acting Chief) of Division for Occupied Areas (ADO) in the Department of State. 1946 February 9 - March 20, trip to Germany for Department of State. 1947 March - April, trip to Germany for Department of State. 1947-1948 Professor of Sociology, Graduate Faculty, New School for Social Research, New York. 1948 March - April, trip to Germany for Department of State. 1948-1960 Organizer and Head, Social Science Division, The Rand Corporation. 1947-1951 Consultant, Department of State 1950 October 31 - December 2, trip to Germany as Consultant for the Department of State. 1951 Consultant, Ford Foundation. 1952 April - June, trip to Germany for Rand to study conditions. Publication of Social Order and The Risks of War (re-issued by M.I.T. Press in 1969). 1954 March - June, trip to Germany for Rand to study conditions. 1955 September - November, trip to Germany for Rand to study conditions. 1956-1957 On leave from Rand; Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University. 1957 Publication of German Rearmament and Atomic War; co-editor with W. P. Davison of West German Leadership and Foreign Policy. 1958-1962 Consultant, USAF Scientific Advisory Board 1960-1968 Member of the Rand Research Council; Chairman from 1961-1962. 1961 Publication of Divided Berlin: The Anatomy of Soviet Political Blackmail. 1964 On leave from Rand; Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, New York. Publication of his translation of Grimmelshausen's Courage, the Adventuress and the False Messiah. 1965 December 21, Death of first wife, Lisa. 1967 February 18, married second wife, Margit Leipnik. 1969-1973 Professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. 1969 Publication of Force and Folly: Essays on Foreign Affairs and the History of Ideas. 1975 Publication of Witz und Politik: Essay über das Lachen und die Macht. 1977 Publication of Die Angestellten vor dem Nationalsozialismus. 1979-1980 Co-editor with Harold Lasswell and Daniel Lerner of 3-volume publication Propaganda and Communication in World History. 1981 Published his autobiographical essay, From the Ashes of Disgrace: A Journal from Germany, 1945-1955. 1990 Died on February 17 while vacationing in Sarasota, Florida.
- Acquisition information:
Items in this manuscript group were donated to the University Libraries, M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives by Hans Speier in 1988 and by Mrs. Hans (Margit) Speier in 1990.
The collection is organized into 10 series: 1) Biographical materials, including family documents and correspondence, 1922-1984; 2) Autobiographical writings, 1945-1989; 3) Correspondence files, 1911-1988; 4) Manuscripts and typescripts, ca. 1920-1987; 5) The RAND Corporation materials, 1948-1988; Miscellaneous typescripts by other authors, 1941-1982; 6) Miscellaneous typescripts by other authors, 1941-1982; 7) Nazi propaganda, 1941-1944; Anti-Nazi propaganda, 1943-1944; Allied Forces Intelligence Reports and memoranda, 1940-1948; 8) Notes and materials on various topics; and 9) Note cards; and 10) Political pamphlets, 1934-1970. Series 4 is further divided into two sub-series: typescripts of books written or edited by Speier, and typescripts of shorter writings, including poetry, short stories and essayistic writings. Series 5 is also divided into two sub-series: Hans Speier's log notes (diary entries) and the essayistic writings.
- Processing information:
Processed in 2005 by Sandra H. Hawrylchak.
- Public Servants
Military and Armed Conflict
Germans -- United States.
Sociologists -- United States.
Sociologists -- Germany.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Propaganda.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Psychological aspects.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Campaigns.
World War, 1939-1945 -- German Americans.
Germany -- Politics and government -- 1945-1990.
- Speier, Hans.
Ascoli, Max, 1898-1978.
Brodersen, Arvid, 1904-1996.
Coser, Lewis A., 1913-2003.
Goldsen, Joseph M.
Iklé, Fred Charles.
Kellermann, Henry J.
Kris, Ernst, 1900-1957.
Lasswell, Harold D. (Harold Dwight), 1902-1978.
Leites, Nathan, 1912-1987.
Lepsius, Richard, 1810-1884.
Staudinger, Hans, 1889-1980.
New School for Social Research (New York, N.Y. : 1919-1997)
Rand Corporation. Social Sciences Division.