Dr. George W. Sanderlin was born on February 5, 1915 in Baltimore, MD. He earned his B.A. from American University, Washington, DC, in 1935, and his Ph.D. in English from John Hopkins University just three years later at the age of 23. He began his teaching career at the University of Maine, then joined the San Diego State faculty in 1954. He earned an Outstanding Professor Award in 1974.
Sanderlin was a remarkably productive writer, having published well over 600 pieces in various periodicals, including scholarly articles dealing with medieval and classical subjects. His best-known work may be the writing and editing of historical books for children. His extensive bibliography includes the following volumes: First Around the World: A Journal of Magellan's Voyage (1965); Across the Ocean Sea: A Journal of Columbus's Voyage (1966); Benjamin Franklin: As Others Saw Him (1971); and A Hoop to the Barrel: The Making of the American Constitution (1974).
Dr. Sanderlin retired in 1983.
1993 interview with George Sanderlin, SDSU Professor of English from 1954 to 1983.
Download the PDF transcript: Part 1; Part 2.
In this interview totaling 1 hour and 53 minutes, Dr. Sanderlin talks about his early love of English, how he could publish so much while still carrying a full teaching load, and the circumstances of his arrival to California. He discusses the conflict between teaching and research on campus, and how the pressure for faculty to publish began in the 1960s. Sanderlin further reflects on the development of the English graduate program and masters program in creative writing, some of his outstanding students over the years, and his work teaching with Educational Growth Opportunities (EGO), a campus program which offered classes for older and retired people.
Interviewed by Lyn Olsson on audio cassette on 6/25/1993.
Image credit: Professor George Sanderlin in 1975, University Archives Photograph Collection, Special Collections & University Archives.
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