Alan Henry Roper passed away November 23, 2020, in Los Angeles after a lengthy illness. Born on July 17, 1933, in Bridgend, Wales, Professor Roper had lived in Los Angeles since 1965.
An extremely well-educated man, Alan received his BA in English Literature from Cambridge University in 1957. Subsequently, he received his MA from Dalhousie University in 1959 and his PhD from Johns Hopkins University in 1961.
He began his teaching career at Harvard University in 1961-62 and then at Queens College in Cambridge from 1962-65. His lengthy career at UCLA began in 1965 as an assistant professor, then an associate professor from 1968-71, a full professor from 1971-94 and finally a professor emeritus from 1994 until his retirement.
He was dedicated to the study of John Dryden and was the editor of the Dryden Project for many years. Some of Alan’s literary works were “Dryden’s Poetic Kingdoms,” “Arnold’s Poetic Landscapes,” “Dryden, Sunderland and the Metamorphoses of a Trimmer” and numerous volumes of “The Works of John Dryden.”
Alan grew up in London during the chaos of World War II and endured the blitz as did all the residents, leaving lasting memories throughout his life. He served in the British Army completing his national service as a lieutenant.
Alan married the love of his life, Nina Savva, in 1957. Nina joined Alan as he progressed through his teaching career in the various locations and was overjoyed when they moved to Los Angeles in 1965. They lived in West Los Angeles and Santa Monica Canyon before settling in Pacific Palisades in 1971. He was a kind and caring partner for 58 years until Nina’s passing in 2015. In 1967, they welcomed a son, Adam D. Roper.
Alan was the consummate English gentleman; respected and admired by all that knew him. He was also a loving husband, father, father in-law and grandfather. He touched and influenced countless students throughout his many years of teaching, and surely they all remember the impact he had on them to this day, inspiring some of them to dedicate books to him that they would go on to author. He could be imposing and stern but, to those that knew him, they could see he had a heart of gold.
He is survived by his son, Adam D. Roper, daughter-in-law, Laura L. Roper, and his grandson, Nicholas A. Roper. He will always remain close to our hearts and will be sorely missed.
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