Stuart George Levine

Stuart Levine, 84, teacher, editor, musician and artist passed away Oct. 29 at Lawrence Memorial Hospital.

Stuart Levine was born May 25, 1932 in Brooklyn, NY. His interest in arts and education blossomed when he attended Hempstead High School, where he was editor-in-chief of the newspaper, The Patriot. He played first french horn in the orchestra there under the direction of one of his favorite teachers, Imogene Boyle. His horn teacher, whom he greatly admired was Kashmir Albinski. He was also the founder of the school’s literary magazine, Etcetera, which continued to be published for decades beyond his graduation.

After high school, Stuart attended Harvard University where he played in the marching band and served as president of the Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra, the Pierian Sodality of 1808. He was also responsible for founding the Leverett House Orchestra. A member of Phi Beta Kappa, he graduated in 1954 (Magna cum laude).

He received his master’s degree and PhD from Brown University. While attending Brown he played in the marching band and designed half-time drills. Outside of the classroom, he performed music professionally as principal french horn for the Rhode Island Philharmonic. He also worked in radio, hosting a show called, Portfolio, which aired on WXCN, WPFM (both in Providence, RI), and on stations in Boston, Hartford, and New York City.

Stuart came to KU in 1958 and helped found the American Studies Department. He founded the journal, American Studies, and published its first issue in 1960. During his teaching career, he was awarded six Fulbrights that took him and (sometimes his family) to Argentina, Mexico, Costa Rica, Paraguay, Ecuador, Uruguay, Chile and Italy. It was during preparation for his trip to Argentina that he met the woman who would later become his wife. Susan Fleming Matthews, who taught the intensive Spanish preparatory course that Stuart took before departing for South America. It was not long after his return to the US that the pair were wed—a marriage that would last for the remaining 54 years of his life.

Stuart was a prolific writer during and after his career at KU. As the founding editor of the well-known scholarly journal, American Studies, he authored numerous articles covering subjects within the field. He also contributed to many books, and served as a book reviewer for other publications. He was perhaps, best known as author and/or editor of 7 books about Edgar Allan Poe (several co-edited with Susan). In 1963, he wrote the work, Materials for Technical Writing. In 1968 he and co-editor Nancy Lurie won the Anisfield-Wolf Award in Race Relations for their work on the American Studies Journal issue (later to become a book), The American Indian Today. Throughout his life, he would write many works of fiction—both short stories and novels. His short works appeared in such publications as The Chicago Review and Short Story. His book of short stories, The Monday Wednesday Friday Girl won the Woodley Press Award.

His musical life also continued in Lawrence. He played in the City Band (formerly the City Union Band), and was a founding member of the Lawrence Woodwind Quintet (which performed in the area for 47 years) as well as the CottonWoodwinds. The Lawrence Woodwind Quintet was well-known in the region for its dedication to in-school performances as part of the Concerts for Young People Series.

Stuart married Susan Fleming Matthews on June 6, 1963 in Minneapolis, MN. She survives of the home.

Other survivors include a daughter, Becky Caudill of Northport, AL (spouse, Patrick), a son, Aaron of Cutler Bay, FL (spouse, Diane), a son, Allen of Lawrence, KS, a sister, Carol Pozefsky of West New York, NJ, 3 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild.

Services were held on Oct. 31 2016 at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home. Burial took place at Beni Israel Cemetery in Eudora, KS.

The family suggests memorials (which can be sent care of Rumsey-Yost) to:

Lawrence Visiting Nurses Association Hospice
Lawrence Jewish Community Congregation
University of Kansas School of Music
Kansas Advocates for Better Care