Literary papers of Sylvia Kantaris

Scope and Content

The collection includes the author's editions of all seven published collections of poetry, as well as drafts (some unpublished), manuscripts, the author's notes, and correspondence from publishers or translators. Also includes some juvenilia, copies of articles and reviews written for newspapers and magazines, and plans and notices of lectures and readings, as well as photographs from events. Also, a copy of Kantaris' MA Thesis, 'Surrealism in Spite of Dada'.

Administrative / Biographical History

Sylvia Kantaris was born Sylvia Mosely in Derbyshire in 1936. She was first published as a school girl in 1952. Kantaris studied French at Bristol University, and achieved a post-graduate Certificate in Education, during which time she was told she had no talent in poetry. Despite this, she wrote poetry whilst she worked as a teacher - first in Bristol and London, then in Australia, where she moved in 1962, with her husband, Emmanuel Kantarizis, a Greek born in Egypt, by whom she had two children in 1965 and 1967. Whilst in Australia, she wrote her MA and PhD theses in French surrealism, and also wrote reviews and articles for newspapers and magazines, as well as poetry. 'Time and Motion' was published in 1975 in Australia, at the same time as Kantaris moved back to England, specifically Helston, Cornwall. From there, she continued to work as a tutor through the Open University and the University of Exeter's Extra-Mural department, whilst also publishing many literary articles and several collections of poetry (seven collections in total, between 1975 and 1993, many of which were published internationally). In 1986, she was appointed Cornwall's first Writer in the Community, and in 1989 she received an honorary DLitt from the University of Exeter.


The author's original arrangement has been maintained.

Conditions Governing Access

Usual EUL arrangements apply.

Acquisition Information

Donated by the poet.

Other Finding Aids

Box list available

Archivist's Note

Administrative history compiled from box list by Kathy Whittington

Conditions Governing Use

Usual EUL conditions apply.