Papers of Charles Granston Richards

Scope and Content

No Carpet on the Floor: Recollections and Reflections, typescript memoirs concerning his missionary and literary/publishingwork in Africa, 1935-1975, with a list of his papers held at the School ofOriental and African Studies, [1977-1995].

Administrative / Biographical History

Charles Granston Richards (fl 1908-1996) travelled to Kenya, 1935 with theChurch Missionary Society, his special responsibility being the encouragementof literacy and literature among East Africans. Working through the ChurchMissionary Society in Nairobi, he became a publisher. He wrote the report whichled to the foundation of the East African Literature Bureau in 1948, andwas its first Director, a post he held for 15 years.

In 1963 he transferred to the Oxford University Press to build up itspublishing in East Africa, but was released to work part-time in the settingup of the Christian Literature Fund of the World Council of Churches. He wasDirector of the Fund, 1965-1970 and of its successor, the Agency for ChristianLiterature Development, 1970-1974, working constantly 'in the field'. On hisretirement as Director, the Agency was replaced by the Print Media DevelopmentUnit. Richards kept up an active association with this and with other literatureand literacy-based agencies. Other activities included serving on the BritishCommittee on Literacy and the conducting of an evaluation of the South AfricanBureau of Literacy.

Access Information

Bodleian reader's ticket required.


Collection level description created by Paul Davidson, Bodleian Library of Commonwealth and African Studies at Rhodes House.

Other Finding Aids

The library holds a card index of all manuscript collections in its reading room.

Conditions Governing Use

No reproduction or publication of personal papers without permission. Contact the library in the first instance.

Related Material

No carpet on the floor: recollections and reflectionson the work of 40 years, 1935-1975, in the development of literature andpublishing chiefly in the Third World, by Charles Granston Richards,with list of papers deposited in the School of Oriental and African Studies(ref. MSS. Afr. s. 1786). The papers of Charles Granston Richards, 1935-1995, comprising articles, reports, books, pamphlets and correspondence are held in the School of Oriental and African Studies.