Marlboro College

AcademicsEdmund Brelsford - Language & Literature

Image of Edmund Brelsford Edmund M.Brelsford, drew his last breath in the White Mountains on Sunday afternoon, September 11, at the top of Bear Notch Pass.

The Faculty has adopted the following resolution:

Whereas Edmund Brelsford was for more than forty years a member of our faculty and our community, providing the core of our program in languages and foreign literatures and developing both that program and himself in response to the many changes in our curricular expectations over those years; whereas he brought to our communal life his passions not just as a linguist, but also as a traveler, a singer, a musician, an instrument-maker, a dancer, an actor, a skier, a father, and a friend; whereas he has departed from among us abruptly but in the midst of activities and people that he loved; we therefore mark his departure in sorrow and with love and compassion for Veronica and for his family.

Edmund's appetite for languages seems boundless. As an undergraduate he tackled French, Spanish and Russian. His graduate work has taken him to Madrid, Paris, Mexico, Grenoble, Havana and Siena, as well as to Middlebury College for an M.A. Along the way he has added Italian, Norwegian and Brazilian Portuguese.

A global traveler, Edmund enjoys the excitement of a multi-lingual environment, an excitement he shares with his students in his language and literature classes. Drawing from a broad spectrum of theory and experience, he uses a mix of innovative and conventional teaching techniques, both inside and out of the classroom. A fondness for incorporating acting, music, dance and film into his teaching stems from Edmund's background in the performing arts. He brings all of these techniques to the classroom in an unending effort to convey the appropriate cultural gesture.

"Students learn quickly that foreign language skills go far beyond the utilitarian," Edmund says. "As language mediates thought, so it mediates culture. To mediate thought about language is akin to stepping out of one's skin of consciousness, a cover more closely woven to the human identity than is the skin of our bodies."

A.B., University of Miami, 1957; M.A., Middlebury College, 1960; Laureat Lafayette, 1957; Certificats de Langue, Litterature et Phonetique, University of Paris (Sorbonne), 1957 - 1960; Escuela del Verano, University of Madrid, 1957, 1958; Universita degli Studi, summer 1969, fall 1983; Universite de Grenoble, 1984 - 1985; ALPS Summer, Dartmouth College, 1987; Universita per Stranier, Perugia, Italy, spring, 1989; Marlboro College, 1964 -

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