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Archives & Manuscripts

Mary R. Hopkins Papers

 Collection
Identifier: SFHL-RG5-222
Contains the papers of Mary R. Hopkins, Quaker social worker, lecturer, and feminist. This collection reflects her evolution from her early adult life as a 1950s housewife and mother to a social worker and then a radical feminist. In the 1980s, Hopkins became deeply interested in the search for a female identity through symbols and researched the images of women in art, collecting an extensive collection of slides. After leaving the social work profession, she developed a series of slide lectures on female symbols and the lack of a female iconography created by women; she presented these lectures to Quaker, feminist, and Jungian groups. An active Friend as well as a feminist, she was invloved in Friends General Conference, Friends Conference on Religion and Psychology, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, and other Quaker and feminist groups. The two main religious writings are from 1968 and 1975, a sermon and a spiritual autobiography.

Dates

  • 1936-2002

Creator

Limitations on Accessing the Collection

Collection is open for research.

Copyright and Rights Information

Copyright has not been assigned to Friends Historical Library. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in to the Director. Permission for publication is given on behalf of Friends Historical Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by researcher.

Extent

7 Linear Feet (14 boxes)

Overview

Mary Hopkins (b. 2928), Quaker social worker, lecturer, and feminist, wrote and spoke on the issue of women in the Quaker faith and community. Much of her research involved ancient religions and the ways that modern women can incorporate these ideas into their spiritual life. Hopkins gave lectures and slide shows to many groups. Her research and lectures led to a video series titled Woman and her Symbols. The collection includes letters and papers relating to her education and career as a social worker in Pennsylvania, art research, lectures, and Quaker projects. Her activities included Women's Caucus for Art, Friends General Conference, Friends Conference on Religion and Psychology, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, and other Quaker groups.

Biographical / Historical

Mary Hopkins was born in 1928 in Boston, Massachusetts, the daughter of Francis C. and Virginia Reed. Mary Caroline Reed attended Finch Junior College and subsequently graduated from Smith College in 1951. She married Byrd Hopkins in the middle of her senior year, and they had four children. She began to volunteer and then work for the Northern Educational Service in Springfield, Massachusetts, as a counseling coordinator for disadvantaged students. Beginning in the early 1960s, she regularly attended Friends' Conference on Religion and Psychology and studied Jungian psychology. She was an English major in College, but after her marriage ended in 1971, she increasingly became involved in religious thought, psychology, feminism, and social work. She also became a Quaker, joining the Mount Toby Monthly Meeting. In 1977 she earned an MSW from Bryn Mawr College Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research. From 1977 to 1981, she worked as a medical social worker for Sacred Heart Hospital in Chester, Pa., and in private practice. She was a long time participant in the Round Table Associates, an Association for Analytical Psychology in the Delaware Valley.

In the 1980s, Hopkins became deeply interested in the search for a female identity through symbols, and she researched the images of women in art, collecting an extensive collection of slides. After leaving the social work profession, she developed a series of slide lectures on female symbols and the lack of a female iconography created by women; she presented these talks in many forums, including Quaker, feminist, and Jungian groups. She was also active in the Women?s Caucus for Art and worked for three years as a national administrator for the organization. Her research evolved into a workshop entitled "Exploring Women's Spirituality Through Art History" in six parts, five of which were made into a video tapes entitled "Woman and Her Symbols" in three parts. An active Friend as well as a feminist, Mary Hopkins was involved in groups which were trying to develop a more woman-centered meeting. In the 1990s, she devoted increasing amount of time and energy to Quaker activities. She was active in Friends General Conference, especially in the Women's Center and was a member of the Ministry and Nurture Committee. She served as Clerk of the Women's Committee of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting. She was also involved in Quaker meetings as a clerk and observer. In the mid-1990s she participated in the Structure and Workings Committee of the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting. Several of her articles concern religion and the spiritual state of the Society of Friends, with special attention to silent worship. The two main religious writings are from 1968 and 1975, a sermon and a Spiritual Autobiography.

Arrangement

  1. Series 1. Biographical
  2. Series 2. Correspondence
  3. Series 3. Writings, lectures, and workshops
  4. Series 4. Quaker organizations and activities.
  5. Series 5. Quaker Videos: documents concerning the production and distribution of Woman and Her Symbols videos
  6. Series 6. Miscellaneous

Physical Location

For current information on the location of materials, please consult the Libraries' online catalog: http://tripod.brynmawr.edu

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Deposit, Mary R. Hopkins, FHL 1998.030 and 1998.065
Immediate Source of Acquisition Gift of Claire Simon, FHL.2003.019

Related Materials

Woman and Her Symbols (video recording)

The Dynamics of an Unprogrammed Meeting for Worship, 1999.

Separated Materials

Transferred to the respective committee records of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting deposited in Friends Historical Library: CCI, General Secretary Search Committee, Abortion Study Group, Structures and Organization Committee.

Transferred to the Quaker Collection at Haverford College: Women's Committee (PYM)

Photographs of Mary R. Hopkins stored in FHL Individual Portrait Collection.

Removed common publications including "Inward Light" (1982, 1983, 1984, 1973), "The Flood of '72", "Rebuilding after Agnes" (1972), "Womanhood in Myth and Life" by Elined Prys Kotschnig, Elizabeth's Dream by Julianna FreeHand (1984), and The Ribbon: A Celebration of Life by the Lark Books Staff and Marianne Philbin (1985).

Processing Information

Received in five cartons. Papers were in acidic folders, not sorted or ordered. Official minutes and PYM committee-related material transferred to RG2. Papers were then sorted into series and arranged chronologically.
Processing Information 7 video tape masters of "Crones", "Woman and Her Symbols", "Of Lime and Wood", and "Who are the Quakers?" and related papers. The tapes have been moved to audiovisuals collection of Friends Historical Library.
Title
Mary R. Hopkins Papers, 1936-2002
Subtitle
A Finding Aid
Date
2014
Description rules
dacs
Language of description
English

Revision Statements

  • 2016: This electronic finding aid was updated in Summer 2016 by Abdulrezak Kemal in preparation for importing into ArchivesSpace, to conform to current markup standards and the ArchivesSpace data model.

Find It at the Library

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