Skip to main content

Rebecca Ranson Papers

 Collection — Box: 1
Identifier: Coll2008-021

Scope and Content of Collection

The collection consists of scripts of three of Ranson's plays (circa 1987-1989)-- For Love and For Life, Secrets, and Bathed in Blood--a copy of Stormy Road Onward (1996), a book of interviews and stories by residents of single room occupancy (SRO) dwellings, her resume (1990), and a small number of clippings by and about her (1987-1988).


  • 1987-1996
  • Majority of material found within 1987 - 1989



The collection is open to researchers. There are no access restrictions.

Publication Rights

Researchers wishing to publish materials must obtain permission in writing from ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives as the physical owner. Researchers must also obtain clearance from the holder(s) of any copyrights in the materials. Note that ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives can grant copyright clearance only for those materials for which we hold the copyright. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain copyright clearance for all other materials directly from the copyright holder(s).


Rebecca Ranson was born in 1943. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Radio, Television, and Film from the University of Georgia in 1970, and a Master of Fine Arts in Playwriting at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, in 1975. She worked as a creative writing instructor in North Carolina in 1978-1979, and as project and workshop director, media producer, and writer at WVSP Public Radio in Warrenton, North Carolina from 1979 to 1981. In 1982, she served as Playwright-in-residence for The Road Company, Johnson City, Tennessee, and from 1983 to 1985 she was Writer-in-residence at Harrisburg Area Community College. In 1983, when her friend Warren Johnston was diagnosed with AIDS, the center of her life became gay and lesbian issues. She became Executive Director of the Southeastern Arts, Media and Education Project (SAME), a multi-arts organization for the gay and lesbian community in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1986, serving for twelve years. In 2004 she received the Robert Chesley Foundation Lifetime Achievement award.

Ranson has written over 30 plays, many of them dealing with social issues. Warren, written after Warren Johnston died of AIDS in April 1984, was one of the first plays concerning AIDS to be produced. Other dramatic works on LGBT themes include Desperadoes: A Trilogy (1982), Secrets (1988), A Glorietta (2000), For Love and for Life, and Lavender Hearts. After more than twenty years of the AIDS crisis, she started writing a novel and conducting interviews with People with AIDS (PWA), nurses, doctors, lovers, families and friends exploring personal experiences in San Francisco and Atlanta.


0.2 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



Materials, 1987-1996, relating to the life and work of Lesbian playwright Rebecca Ranson, including scripts of three of her plays (circa 1987-1989), a copy of Stormy Road Onward (1996), a book of interviews and stories by residents of single room occupancy (SRO) dwellings, her resume (1990), and a small number of clippings by and about her.

Acquisition Information

Date and method of acquisition unknown.

Related Material

Southeastern Media, Arts and Education (SAME) Project Records, ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, Coll2008-020.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Michael C. Oliveira, June 4, 2008.

Processing this collection has been funded by a generous grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Rebecca Ranson Papers
Michael C. Oliveira
© 2008
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in: English

Repository Details

Part of the ONE Archives at the USC Libraries, University of Southern California Repository

909 West Adams Boulevard
Los Angeles California 90007 United States
(213) 821-2771