Bermant, Chaim (1929-1998)

The Chaim Bermant collection includes manuscripts, correspondence, diaries and notebooks, scrapbooks, photographs, legal material, financial material, printed material, and audio recordings. 

Manuscripts by Bermant in the collection include novels, plays, screenplays, teleplays, book reviews, and magazine pieces.  Novels in the collection include multiple drafts for many titles; most are typed and have handwritten corrections.  There are also page proofs for several of his books.  Titles include The Diary of an Old Man (Chapman and Hall, 1966); Israel (Thames and Hudson, 1967); Swinging in the Rain (Hodder and Stoughton, 1967); Troubled Eden (Valentine and Eden, 1969); Now Dowager (Eyre and Spottiswood, 1971); The Cousinhood (Macmillan & Co., 1972); Roses are Blooming in Picardy (Eyre Methuen, 1972); The Last Supper (St. Martin’s Press, 1973); London’s East End: Point of Arrival (Eyre Methuen, 1974); Coming Home (Allen and Unwin, 1976); The Patriarch (St. Martin’s Press, 1981); The House of Women (Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1984); Dancing Bear (Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1984); What’s the Joke: A Study in Jewish Humour (Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1986); Titch (Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1987);   Genesis: A Latvian Childhood (Robson Books, 1998). 

Manuscripts for plays, screenplays, and teleplays by Bermant include about two dozen items.  Titles include: Esther; Fidelity, Ltd.; My Brother Esau; The Persian Queen; Cyril; Hanging Committee; Kosher Caruso; The Novice; Kosher Jeeves; Waiting for Stanley; There’s One Born Every Minute; and The Party. 

Other manuscripts in the collection include drafts of biographies on Lord Hirshfield and Lord Jacobovits; an assortment of early writings by Bermant, including stories and excerpts of longer works from the 1960s; drafts of several short stories, book reviews, and articles; and material for several children’s books.           

Correspondence in the collection is extensive.  There are approximately 2,500 professional letters, mostly between Bermant and various British publications, including The Jewish Chronicle, The Observer, The Guardian, The Evening Standard, Judenferdant, and The Times.  In addition, there are letters from publishers, friends and other writers,, including David Irving, Elie Wiesel, Lord Jacobovits, Charles Landstone, Charles Angoff, and Arthur A. Cohen.  In addition, there are several personal letter, as well as eighteen letters dated 1969-1973 dealing specifically with the characterizations in Bermant’s novel The Cousinhood

Bermant’s diaries date from 1959 to 1998.  There are twenty in total.  In addition, there are various assorted notebooks, personal organizers, and address books. 

Scrapbooks in the collection include an album devoted to World War II, titled “Second Front: June 6, 1944”; and two albums regarding Jewish affairs and/or Bermant’s articles. 

Photographs in the collection include a portrait of Bermant, as well as and photos of him and his family. 

Legal and financial documents in the collection include Bermant’s birth certificate (in Polish), passports, publishing contracts, and insurance.  In addition, there are various financial records, bills, statements and account books. 

Printed material in the collection includes many reviews of Bermant’s novels and plays.  Also, there are also magazine issues which contain Bermant’s writing.  These date from the 1970s to the 1990s and include The College Courant, The New Yorker, Judaism Today, Society Illustrated, The Jewish Chronicle, and many pamphlets, newspaper articles, and works like Who’s Who, which has an entry for Bermant. 

Audio recordings in the collection consist of seventeen audio tapes.  These include interviews with Lord Jacobovits, as well as eight tapes of Bermant talking with the actor Topol.

Notable Figures
1. Bermant, Chaim, 1929-1998
Associated Subjects
1. Literary Collections Subject Guide
2. Jewish Studies Subject Guide
3. Economists
4. Novelists
5. Editors
6. Teachers
7. Authors, Polish
8. Television authorship – Great Britain
9. English literature – Jewish authors
10. Novels
11. Television writers
12. Jewish authors – Great Britain
13. English literature – 20th century
14. Television scripts
15. Authors, English
16. Photographs
17. Diaries