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Bradbury, Malcolm

university history lodge academic

(British, 1932–2000) Bradbury was one of Britain's most influential post-war teachers and critics of literature. Start with his novel The History Man (1975), a witty and observant satire of university life; its hero is a charismatic firebrand whose radicalism is a cover for ferocious self-seeking.

The History Man is probably the best-known example of ‘campus novel’, of which Bradbury and his friend David Lodge have been the principal exponents. Bradbury's first novel, Eating People is Wrong (1959), was an engaging portrait of the flounderings of a teacher at a provincial university. Rates of Exchange (1983), shortlisted for the Booker Prize, was about an academic's misadventures in an obscure state in eastern Europe. The international settings appeared to have imposed a strain on the author's comic invention by the time of Doctor Criminale (1992), set in the world of academic conferences.

David Lodge, Kingsley Amis  NC

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