Michael Holquist, Former President of the MLA, 1935–2016

The MLA mourns the recent passing of Michael Holquist, who was president of the MLA in 2007. An accomplished scholar, translator, and editor, Holquist published on a range of subjects from utopian fiction to Dostoevsky but was perhaps best known for his scholarship on the work of Mikhail Bakhtin.  After tenures in the Slavic departments of Yale University, the University of Texas, and Indiana University, Holquist returned to Yale, where he taught in the comparative literature department from 1986 to 2004. He served on the working group that produced the MLA Report to the Teagle Foundation on the Undergraduate Major in Language and Literature and was a founding member and chair of the MLA Radio Committee, which created programming to bring the work of MLA members to a wider audience. Most recently, as a member of the MLA’s Working Group on K–16 Alliances, he brought his knowledge of texts and his teaching experience to bear on the question of incorporating literature into the Common Core State Standards Initiative.