Academic journal article ARIEL

Victor J. Ramraj

Academic journal article ARIEL

Victor J. Ramraj

Article excerpt

Scholars of postcolonial studies will be saddened to learn of the death of Victor Ramraj in August 2014. Born in Guyana, he completed his BA at the University College of the West Indies (London) in Kingston, Jamaica, and then continued on to graduate studies (MA, PhD) in Canada at the University of New Brunswick. In 1970, he took up a position in the Department of English at the University of Calgary. Generations of students, undergraduate and graduate, will remember him as an eloquent teacher.

Victor was a scholar of Canadian literature, Commonwealth literatures, and postcolonial literatures. His book Mordecai Richler (1983) was a path-breaking study of a writer who was to become a canonical figure for Canadian literature. The anthology he edited of world writing in English, Concert of Voices (1995), has been taught across North America and elsewhere. He was a co-editor of a collection, Postindependence Voices in South Asian Writing (2001), and an anthology of West Indian stories. The wide range of titles speaks strongly to the breadth and depth of his interests. He gave talks and plenary addresses at universities and conferences around the world, most recently speaking about the first Canadian Nobel Prize in Literature winner Alice Munro in Shanghai and Guyana.

The profession also gained great benefit from Victors willingness to serve on many committees, too numerous to mention individually here. Some of the most prestigious were his presidency of the Canadian Association for Commonwealth Language and Literature Studies (1992-95), his membership on the Commonwealth Literature Prize committee (1999-2001) and the Raja Rao Award for Literature of the South Asian Diaspora jury (2004), and his position as chief judge on the Guyana Literary prizes committee (2004-05 and 2011). …

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