Archives of Scientific Philosophy: The Rose Rand Papers
363 Hillman Library
3960 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
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Rose Rand was born on June 14, 1903 in Lemberg, a city that was then the capital of the Austrian province of Galicia (today Lwiw, Ukraine). After receiving her elementary school education, her family moved to Vienna, where she graduated from high school in 1924. That same year she began her studies in philosophy at the University of Vienna. Among her teachers were Robert Reininger, Heinrich Gomperz, Moritz Schlick, and Rudolf Carnap. After her graduation in 1928 and during her time as a PhD candidate, she stayed in close intellectual contact with Schlick and other members of the Vienna Circle. She participated at Vienna Circle meetings, mainly through the years 1930-1935, and recorded several of the discussions in the form of minutes. Between 1930 and 1937, Rose Rand was also working and conducting research at the Psychiatric-Neurological Clinic in Vienna. In addition, she earned her living by privately coaching students and giving adult education classes. Rose Rand finally received her doctorate in philosophy from the University of Vienna in 1938 with a dissertation on "T. Kotarbinski's Philosophy."
In 1939 Rose Rand left Austria and emigrated to England with the help of Otto Neurath and L. Susan Stebbing. During the spring of 1940, after a short period of working as a nurse and struggling to adjust, she was admitted as a "distinguished foreigner" to attend lectures at the faculty of Moral Science at Cambridge University, where she joined the seminars of Ludwig Wittgenstein. At the beginning of 1943 her university privileges were revoked and, forced by economic difficulties, she had to supplement her income by working in a metal factory for the British war industry while also teaching German and psychology in night classes at various colleges. With the help of Karl Popper, who was at that point professor at the London School of Economics, she received a small research grant in 1950 and was able to go to Oxford University as a "recognized student."
In 1954 Rose Rand left England and emigrated to the United States. From May 1954 until September 1955, she attempted to pursue her research, using the libraries at Princeton and Harvard universities, while looking for academic employment. During the years 1955 to 1959 she held temporary teaching positions at the University of Chicago (elementary mathematics), at the University of Indiana at Gary (ancient philosophy and logic), and as a research associate at Notre Dame University. At the beginning of 1959, Rose Rand returned to Cambridge, MA, and later to Princeton, NJ. During the years that followed until her death in 1980 her main source of income consisted of various grants and fellowships, mainly for her work on translations. When not backed by such support, she depended on private loans and other financial assistance, free-lance translation work, or sporadic temporary employment. Rose Rand died on July 28, 1980 in Princeton, NJ, at the age of 77.
The Rose Rand Collection comprises her personal and professional records, a significant amount of correspondence and working papers, as well as notebooks, research notes, manuscript fragments, and transcriptions from Vienna Circle discussions. It also includes annotated books from her personal library.
The personal and professional records cover items such as legal and educational documents, testimonials, financial and health care records, as well as photographs, travel documents, and address books. Her working papers, manuscripts, transcriptions, and note books record largely her work as a translator, her own research, and discussions and presentations from the Vienna Circle. The correspondence is extensive, more than 1600 letters, and covers a wide range of dates, from the early period in Vienna to the time right after her death. Correspondents include prominent members of the Vienna Circle and affiliated individuals, such as Rudolf Carnap, Moritz Schlick, Otto Neurath, Ludwig Wittgenstein, and Karl Popper. Covered are also exchanges with the Polish philosophers Tadeusz Kotarbinski, Kazimierz Ajdukiewicz, and Alfred Tarski, with family and friends, and numerous institutions. The books from her library are all annotated and amount to 48 volumes.
The complete Rose Rand Collection measures 15 linear feet. Access is provided by a comprehensive finding aid. A table of contents at the beginning gives an overview of the general series grouping of the materials and their corresponding box numbers. This is followed by a detailed file folder index, which summarizes the contents of each folder.
Rose Rand's papers were purchased by the University of Pittsburgh in 1990. Please note that the University owns the intellectual property rights to the collection. Therefore, all patrons wishing to quote from or publish material must secure the University's written permission to do so. Direct all such inquiries to the Curator of the A.S.P.