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  • In Memoriam: Elwood N. Berkeley
  • Donald Blayney

The late Elwood N. Berkeley of San Rafael, California, was truly a man for all seasons. When he passed away on the first of May 2007—leaving a most substantial legacy in support of Prairie Schooner and in memory of his close friend Earl Avitt—his eclectic nature in all aspects of intellectual life manifested itself in an overwhelming desire to nurture the creative talents of young writers. The size of his commemorative gift will make this desire become a reality. Having been professor of French in the early years of his career following graduation from Northwestern University, his interests in languages and literatures ranged from Beowulf (he had known the renowned definitive editor Fr. Klaeber) through to the modern literatures of several countries—especially Great Britain. In his late 80s and early 90s, he loved to hear a professor friend read aloud from the poetry of Pope, Wordsworth, Keats, Thomas Hood, Robert Frost, and others; and he never tired of literary discussion and concern for the nature of genius. Mr. Berkeley’s generosity with those whom he loved and respected was unceasing, and his remembrance of Prairie Schooner with such a generous gift enriches the world of creative thought and literary arts. We are, and shall remain, greatly in his debt.



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