David BRADLEY (1925 - 2016)

Professor of English (1971 - 1989)

David Bradley

Emeritus Professor David Bradley, who died on 7 July 2016, aged 90, joined the English department at Monash as a senior lecturer in 1961, the University’s first year of undergraduate teaching.

Appointed Professor of English in 1971, he retired in December 1989, after 29 fruitful and distinguished years at Monash as a scholar, teacher and mentor in his own discipline, and as a generous contributor to the life of the wider University.

Born in Hobart in 1925, Professor Bradley was educated at Melbourne Boys High School, and the University of Melbourne, where he graduated BA (Hons.) in 1946.

Between 1948 and 1960 he was a member of the English department at the University of Western Australia.  In 1951 a British Council Travelling Scholarship took Professor Bradley to Pembroke College, Cambridge, where he graduated with First Class Honours in English, before returning to a senior  lectureship at the University of Western Australia.

David Bradley was a fine actor, deeply involved in student theatre as an undergraduate, and he became increasingly active in theatre and stage design, production and direction over his years in Western Australia. He deployed all these gifts with distinction in student stage productions at Monash, most  notably in the first decade of its development.

His intense scholarly interest in researching the practices of Elizabethan drama, and the structures of the theatre companies presenting it, continued throughout his long academic career.

Known to his students as a stimulating, eloquent and witty teacher and supervisor, David Bradley was praised for bringing a generosity of spirit to his working life, and for the major role he played in leading the growth of a large English department at Monash, one characterised by a wide range and  variety of teaching and scholarship, within a tradition of tolerance and mutual respect.

In 1990, as he had long intended, Professor Bradley retired to his strawberry farm at Rhyll on Phillip Island.  His funeral was held at St Philip’s Anglican Church, Cowes on 12 July 2016.

Published in The Insider, 28 July 2016