Remembering Dr. David Murray | College of Arts

Remembering Dr. David Murray

Posted on Tuesday, October 20th, 2020

It is with great sadness that the Department has learned of the passing on October 7 of our friend and colleague Dr. David Murray.

Dave was a wonderful friend and mentor to all of us. He was always ready with some wise advice and good humor, always kind, self-deprecating, and someone you knew you could trust. Although he was too humble to let on, Dave was a scholar of foundational importance for the field of slavery and abolition, as well as Canadian life and politics. Forty years after he published Odious Commerce: Britain, Spain and the Abolition of the Cuban Slave Trade, the book is still in print! Scholars of Latin America and the Caribbean consider it the founding work in the history of slavery and abolition in Spanish America. Dave started in the History Department in 1967 and served as Dean of the College of Arts from 1980 to 1992. Our colleagues in SETS will also remember him as the Director of School of English and Theatre Studies during his retirement in the mid-2000s.

Dr. Murray's obituary captured his spirit and zest for life in noting that only days before he passed he was out on the golf course: "He would be pleased that his golfing career concluded with a 40-foot putt last week from off the green, for a birdie." We miss Dave very much. We were lucky to know him!

In memory of Dr. Murray, consider donating to the Dr. David Murray Medal in Arts.