Émile Zola | Self Portrait
About the fonds
The Zola Research Program, also known as Le Programme de recherché sur Zola et le Naturalisme or Programme Zola, was a 20-year project to collect, organize and publish the letters of Émile Zola. The Program was a joint effort between one team based in the University of Toronto’s Department of French, and one in Paris made up of researchers from an array of French cultural institutions. The first of ten volumes of the Émile Zola Correspondance series was published in 1978. Subsequent volumes were published approximately 18 months apart until the final volume was published in 1995.
The Zola Research Program fonds consists of photocopies of letters, postcards, telegrams and other correspondence by and to Zola. Matters both personal and professional are discussed in the letters. Each letter is accompanied by contextual information about individuals mentioned therein and historical background. The fonds also consists of materials documenting the Zola Research Program itself. Books collected throughout the course of the Program are the basis for the Émile Zola Collection in the Rare Book Collection of Kelly Library. This collection is the largest repository of Zola letters available in North America and open to the public.
The physical extent of the fonds is 10 m of textual records and 63 photographs. It ranges in date from 1873-2008. It has been arranged into 5 series:
- Project files
- Letters by Zola
- Letters to Zola
- Letters by Contemporaries
- Collected and Reference Material