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Noam Chomsky personal archives

Identifier: MC-0600
The collection contains personal and biographical materials, published and unpublished writings, materials related to speaking engagements, and incoming and outgoing correspondence.


  • Majority of material found within approximately 1940-2014

Conditions Governing Access

Series 1 (boxes 1-38) must be reviewed for incoming correspondence prior to research use. Any folder containing incoming correspondence is restricted until five years after Noam Chomsky’s death, but all other materials are immediately open for research. Please contact at least two business days prior to your research visit to allow time for the boxes to be reviewed.

The other boxes in the collection are temporarily restricted while they undergo archival processing. These boxes will be open for research in September 2019.

Conditions Governing Use

Access to collections in the Institute Archives and Special Collections is not authorization to publish. Separate written application for permission to publish must be made to the Institute Archives. Copyright of some items in this collection may be held by respective creators, not by the donor of the collection.


280 Cubic Feet (in 273 record cartons, 2 manuscript boxes, 4 flat boxes, 1 CD box)


Noam Chomsky is a linguist and political activist. The collection consists of Chomsky's notes, writings, correspondence, and other materials documenting his life and work.

Biographical / Historical

Noam Chomsky is a linguist and political activist.


The collection is currently organized into two series. Materials in Series 2 of the collection have not yet been arranged by an archivist.


The collection was donated by Noam Chomsky in several increments from 2004-2015.

Processing Information note

Between 2012-2017, some materials transferred from Noam Chomsky’s home and office were rehoused and an initial inventory was created. Select materials from Chomsky’s office were referred to by Chomsky and his staff as his "notes on talks" and "travel," and archivists maintained this grouping in the finding aid (these materials now compose Series 1: Speaking Engagements). No other physical or intellectual arrangement took place at this time.

The collection will undergo further archival processing in spring-summer 2019.
Noam Chomsky personal archives
Description rules
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Distinctive Collections Repository

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries
Building 14N-118
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge MA 02139-4307 US