John M. Wallace, English Lang. & Lit.
John M. Wallace, Professor in English Language & Literature, died Oct. 6 in his Hyde Park home. He was 65 years old. He died of natural causes after a long illness with cancer.
An expert in 17th-century poetry, Wallace had contributed numerous articles and reviews to a wide variety of scholarly journals. His major work was "Destiny His Choice: The Loyalism of Andrew Marvell" (Cambridge Press, 1968), issued in paperback in 1980.
"His book broke fresh scholarly and critical ground in understanding the relationship between 17th-century English politics and literature, and his many essays continued his pioneering contribution to looking at literary works in a political context," said Gwin Kolb, the Chester D. Tripp Professor Emeritus in English Language & Literature.
"His way of combining an immense learning with a sensitive critical and historical judgment set a standard in his field as well as for all who knew him," said Wayne Booth, the George M. Pullman Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus in English Language & Literature.
"One of the rare things about him is that he was admired as a human being as well as a scholar, and he was as widely loved as he was respected," said Richard Strier, Professor in English Language & Literature.
Wallace joined the Chicago faculty as Professor in English in 1967 and became a member of the Committee on the History of Culture in 1975. Before coming to Chicago, he taught at Cornell from 1960 to 1963 and at Johns Hopkins from 1963 to 1967.
He was the recipient of numerous academic honors and awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship for 1969-70. He was named an Overseas Fellow of Churchill College, Cambridge University, for 1969-70; a Senior Research Fellow at UCLA for 1979-80; and a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow for 1980-81.
He had been a member of the editorial board of "Modern Philology" since 1969 and of the executive committee of the Newberry Library Center for Renaissance Studies since 1981.
Wallace was born in London and became a U.S. citizen in 1964. He received his B.A. from Trinity College, Cambridge University, in 1950, his M.A. from Cambridge in 1952 and his Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins in 1960.
Wallace is survived by a daughter, Audrey Lauer, of Chicago; and a granddaughter.
A memorial service is to be announced.