News & Politics

5 Rare and Previously Unpublished Documents from the New Chomsky Archive

Take a peek inside MIT's exclusive collection of essays, lecture notes and correspondence.

Photo Credit: Libraries.MIT

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology celebrated Pi Day by raising funds for projects and programs across MIT, including student aid, student life, academic support and the preservation of Noam Chomsky's legacy by the MIT Libraries.

According to Sarah McDonnell, Media Relations Manager at the MIT News Office, "The MIT Libraries were included in the Challenge and highlighted support for Noam Chomsky’s archive as a designation for donations to the Libraries during the fundraising period."

MIT's archive features a collection of lecture notes and correspondence, as well as rare and unpublished materials from Chomsky's 50 years of teaching. 


"The archives include everything I could think of," Chomsky joked in an MIT alumni conference. 

According to MIT, Chomsky provided enough material "to stretch the length of a football field."

Here are five of his most striking works.

1. 'A Call to Resist Illegitimate Authority' (1967)

As one of RESIST's founding members, Chomsky wrote the newsletter below explaining the anti-war group's agenda.

"An ever growing number of young American men are finding that the American war in Vietnam so outrages their deepest moral and religious sense that they cannot contribute to it in any way," Chomsky wrote in the paper addressed "to the whole of the American people." 

2. 'The Responsibility of Intellectuals' (1967)

Based on an essay he wrote for the New York Review of Books, this speech delivered to Rutgers University in 1969 captured Chomsky's anti-war perspective and his disdain for the country's elites.

3. 'American Power and the New Mandarins' (1969)

Noam Chomsky's first major book was published in 1969. A draft of the original manuscript will remain in the archive.

4. Statements to the U.N. General Assembly (1978)

The archive holds an undated transcript of statements Chomsky delivered to the Fourth Committee of the U.N. General Assembly regarding Indonesia's 1975 invasion of East Timor. Four decades later, this human rights crisis continues to shape Chomsky's political beliefs.

5. 'Occupy' (2012) 

Chomsky's 122-page study of the 2011 protest movement has been translated into different languages around the world, like many of his works. Here it is in Bulgarian. 

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Alexandra Rosenmann is an AlterNet associate editor. Follow her @alexpreditor.