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obituaries



  • Walter Mondale Remade the Vice Presidency

    by Stuart E. Eizenstat

    "Walter Mondale created the modern vice presidency out of a position that was an afterthought at the Constitutional Convention. Mondale was a great public servant and a decent man, and his death comes at a time when his progressive politics have gotten a second breath in the Democratic Party."



  • The Quintessential Institutionalist

    by Donald Alexander Downs

    Walter LaFeber's legacy goes beyond scholarship to his work as a champion of academic freedom and open debate, writes his former colleague political theorist Donald Alexander Downs. 



  • Walter LaFeber, Historian Who Dissected Diplomacy, Dies at 87

    Walter LaFeber was an influential scholar of diplomacy whose work balanced analysis of institutions and individual influence, challenged views of American exceptionalism, and even capably wrote about how Michael Jordan explained globalization. 



  • Shelia Washington Dies at 61; Helped Exonerate Scottsboro Boys

    Shelia Washington read the story of the Scottsboro Boys as a teen, dedicated her life to preserving knowledge of their case, and finally spearheaded an effort that led the state of Alabama to exonerate the wrongly convicted men. 



  • Lawrence Ferlinghetti Obituary

    Lawrence Ferlinghetti's influence lasted long past the Beat Generation (of which he was perhaps the last survivor) through his ownership of the landmark independent City Lights bookstore in San Francisco.



  • His Ignominy Is His Triumph: a Counter-Obituary of Rush Limbaugh

    by A.J. Bauer

    "You’d be hard pressed to find a better popularizer of the concept of counter-hegemonic struggle (“culture war” in the vernacular), albeit on the right, or a more “organic intellectual” of the U.S. white upper middle class."



  • Hank Aaron's Lasting Impact is Measured in More than Home Runs

    by Howard Bryant

    Hank Aaron biographer Howard Bryant shared common experiences with the baseball legend as a Black man in the sports industry. He writes about the legacy of the slugger who lived through the Jim Crow and civil rights eras and died at age 86 today. 



  • Tom Lankford, 85, Dies; Southern Journalist With Divided Loyalties

    Tom Lankford took many iconic photographs in Birmingham that publicized the cause of Civil Rights protestors. But he worked behind the scenes to cultivate relationships with the city's notorious Bull Connor to buttress the reputation of the police force while working with his publisher to squelch local demands for change that threatened the business community.



  • The Bravery of William Winter

    by Stuart Stevens

    Former Mississippi Governor William Winter should be remembered for facing down extremists and advancing a moderate vision of change in Mississippi that centered on education. He died at 97 on December 18. 



  • Ted DeLaney, Conscience of a Roiled University, Dies at 77

    Ted DeLaney worked as a custodian at Washington and Lee before graduating at age 41,  returned as a professor, became the school's first Black department chair, and pushed the school to confront the moral and ethical implications of venerating Robert E. Lee.