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Personal papers of Andrew Debicki

Call Number: PP 441


Andrew Debicki was a Professor of Spanish at the University of Kansas from 1968-2005, during which time he also held multiple administrative positions. This collection contains material reflecting his activities as teacher, administrator, and author and expert in the field of modern Spanish and Latin-American poetry.


  • Creation: 1968 - 2005


Conditions Governing Access

These materials are stored in the KU Annex off-site storage area.

All researchers interested in reviewing this material must consult Spencer Research Library Public Services staff (785-864-4334 or, 9-5 M-F CST) no less than three days in advance of a planned visit. Be advised that drop-in requests for this material cannot be accommodated.

Conditions Governing Use

Spencer Library staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of manuscript materials.

Biography of Andrew Debicki

Andrew Debicki was a Professor of Spanish at the University of Kansas (KU). He was born in Poland on June 28, 1934 and lived in Cuba from 1942-1949. He received his B.A. in 1955 and his Ph.D. in 1960, both from Yale University. He taught at Trinity College in Connecticut from 1957-1960, and was a professor at Grinnell College in Iowa from 1960-1968 before coming to the University of Kansas in 1968.

During his time at the University of Kansas, Debicki served as Co-Director for the Center for Humanistic Studies, Director of the Hall Center for the Humanities (1989-1993), Vice-Chancellor for Research, Graduate Studies, and Public Service (1994-1996), and Dean of the Graduate School and International Programs (1996-2000). Debicki retired from administration in 2000, but remained on the faculty to teach and conduct research.

Debicki is the author and editor of many publications -- both books and articles -- in both Spanish and English. His monographs include Estudios sobre poesía española contemporánea (La generación de 1924-25) (1968) and Spanish Poetry of the Twentieth Century: Modernity and Beyond (1994).

Debicki held postdoctoral fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies, the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation (in both 1970 and 1980), the National Endowment for the Humanities (in 1992), and the National Humanities Center. He received the Balfour Jeffrey Research Award from the University of Kansas in 1984, and a Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center Residency in 1993. He was named University Distinguished Professor in 1976. He was awarded the Association of Departments of Foreign Languages Award for Distinguished Service in the Profession in 1999. In 2002, Debicki was honored as a pioneer in modern Spanish poetry by an international group of poets and scholars, as a part of the KU Symposium "The Discovery of Poetry."

Andrew Debicki married Mary Jo Tidmarsh in 1959; she passed away in 1975. He remarried in 1987 to Mary Elizabeth Conway Gwin. He was the father of two daughters, Mary Beth and Margaret, and became the stepfather to four children, Melissa, Betsy, Michael, and Christopher. In 1998, Debicki and his wife Mary Elizabeth, former director of KU's Office of Study Abroad, donated funds to the University of Kansas to establish the Mary Elizabeth and Andrew P. Debicki Graduate Fellowship Fund for graduate students in the humanities.

Dr. Andrew Peter Debicki died on January 20, 2005.


7.25 Linear Feet (9 boxes + 2 oversize boxes)

Language of Materials


Spanish; Castilian


Scope and Contents

The Andrew Debicki collection of personal papers contains teaching materials and notes from his professorship in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, his curriculum vitae, speeches, and correspondence with students, colleagues, and publishers.

The collection also contains reprints and photocopies of articles of both research and teaching interest to Debicki, articles and book reviews written by Debicki and about his own work, and materials from conferences at which he presented papers. The articles, materials, and book reviews are primarily related to the history and criticism of 20th-century Spanish poetry, with the exception of a series of articles on poetry from the "Siglo de Oro" (16th and 17th century Spain), and are primarily organized by author.

The collection also has a scrapbook of letters to Dr. Debicki congratulating him at the time of the 2002 "Discovery of Poetry" symposium, as well as memorials, cards, and clippings related to his passing in 2005.

Physical Location

PP 441

Physical Location

Annex (Contact Spencer Library Public Services)

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gifts, Mary Elizabeth Debicki, 2006; 2016.

Related Materials

Consult library staff regarding the availability of related photographs, biographical files, and scrapbooks.

Guide to the Andrew Debicki Collection
Personal papers of Andrew Debicki
Finding aid prepared by kmc, 2007. Finding aid encoded by kmc, 2007. Finding aid revised by eear, 2016; mwh, 2021.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in English.
Finding aid permalink
Preferred citation
Personal papers of Andrew Debick, PP 441, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas

Repository Details

Part of the University of Kansas. Kenneth Spencer Research Library Repository

1450 Poplar Lane
Lawrence KS 66045-7616 United States