American Sociological Association

ASA Footnotes

A publication of the American Sociological AssociationASA News & Events
January-March 2017
Volume 
45
Issue 
1

Deaths

Henry A. Landsberger, retired professor at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, died February 1, 2017, while visiting his son in Los Angeles, California.

Paul Luebke died on October 29, 2016, at the age of 70. He was a Democratic member of the North Carolina General Assembly and a professor of sociology at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He served 11 consecutive two-year terms in the state House of Representatives.

Ronald M. Pavalko, Professor of Sociology, University of Wisconsin-Parkside 1979-1999 and Dean, School of Liberal Arts, University of Wisconsin-Parkside 1994-1997, died on January 23, 2017, at the age of 82.

Obituaries

Hugh F. "Tony" Cline     

1935-2016

Hugh F. Cline, better known as "Tony" Cline by his family, friends, and colleagues, passed away peacefully on July 4, 1916, after a sudden and brief illness. He was President of the Russell Sage Foundation from 1972 to 1976, and from 1980 to 1997 he was Executive Director of the Division of Applied Measurement Research, Educational Testing Service in Princeton, NJ. At the time of his passing he was a popular Adjunct Professor of Sociology and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, where he had been teaching graduate courses since 1997.

Tony received his BA from Pennsylvania State University in 1956. After serving in the U.S. Air Force from 1956 to 1959, he and his first wife Patricia Dickinson traveled to Sweden where Tony received a Master of Science in Sociology at the University of Stockholm in 1961. That fall he began his studies in the Department of Social Relations at Harvard University, where he became a research assistant to Professor Stanton Wheeler, who had just finished collecting data for his comprehensive study of 15 Scandinavian prisons. Tony, an early convert to computer-based data analysis, did much of the statistical work for that study, and he also used the data for his doctoral dissertation, "The Determinants of Normative Patterns in Correctional Institutions" (Harvard, 1966). His first published paper was a chapter of the same name in a book by Nils Christie, Scandinavian Studies in Criminology, Vol. II, 1968.

Tony's first academic appointment was as Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of California-Santa Barbara (1965-1967), where he taught courses in research methods, introductory sociology, and criminal justice. He enjoyed teaching but missed the research environment he experienced at Harvard. Both Wheeler and Howard Freeman urged him to join them as a staff sociologist at the Russell Sage Foundation, which he did in 1967. There he had a chance to resume working with Wheeler on the Scandinavian Prison Study. In 1972 his leadership skills and commitment to high quality research led to his appointment as President of the Foundation, replacing the retiring Orville Brim. President Cline and the Foundation supported many important studies during his term in office, including The New Presidential Elite: Men and Women in National Politics by Jeanne J. Kirkpatrick.

Seeking a return to full-time research, Tony accepted a Senior sociologist position with the Educational Testing Service in 1976, becoming Executive Director of their Applied Measurement Research Division in 1980. Over the next 21 years, until his retirement in 1997, Tony developed and oversaw many studies of the impact of technology on social institutions, especially in the field of education. Among the many studies he fostered during his ETS career, three of the most important were the Electronic Library, the Electronic Schoolhouse, and the Systems Thinking and Curriculum Innovation Project (STACIN). He published numerous books and articles on these topics between 1981 and 1996, some as first author and others as a co-author.

After retiring from ETS in 1997, he accepted a position at Teachers College (Columbia) as Adjunct Professor of Sociology and Education, and for the next 18 years he taught a graduate seminar on his favorite subject, Technology and Society. It was in this course that he developed and refined the materials for his final book, evaluated and critiqued by his students, which was published in 2014: Information Communication Technology and Social Transformation (Routledge Studies in Science, Technology, and Society).

A recitation of Tony's academic career does not do full justice to his impact on his community and his personal and professional networks. Outside of work, Tony loved how education, broadly speaking, kept life vibrant. He had a particular passion for improving educational programs in underprivileged communities and served on several boards that fostered such development. People who knew Tony found him to be a caring listener with a genuine and inspiring interest in their lives, while always being ready to share what he had learned.

In 1996, Tony married longtime friend, Hilary Hays. They shared a full and enriching life. They enjoyed time with family and close friends, traveling to several foreign countries. He left his mark on people with his interest, curiosity, and enthusiasm. Regardless of the nature of the gathering or setting, Tony was known as a person of profound integrity, warmth, compassion, and with a great sense of humor.

David Armor, George Mason University

Robert L. Fulton

1926 - 2016

Robert (Bob) Lester Fulton died peacefully at the Pillars Hospice in Saint Paul, MN, on July 29, 2016, four months before his 90th birthday. Professor Fulton was the leading pioneer in establishing death, dying, and bereavement as a sociological field for theory, research, practice, and education. At the University of Minnesota, where he served as a professor of sociology from 1963 to 1997, he founded and directed the Center for Death Education and Research.

Beginning in 1965, Fulton edited three editions of his very influential book, Death and Identity. He was co-founder (with Robert Kastenbaum and Richard Kalish) of the first academic journal in the field of death—Omega:Journal of Death and Dying. He gained notoriety from newspaper and video versions of a course that accompanied his edited book, Death and Dying: Challenge and Change. He co-founded (with John Fryer) the International Work Group on Death, Dying, and Bereavement, still the leading professional association in these areas.

His writing and research had an enormous impact on the subfields related to death and dying. For example, among his dozens of publications, a 1961 paper in Social Forces on role conflict in the professional work of clergymen and funeral directors has served as a field-defining conceptual piece. Bob’s pioneering work and leadership in the field brought him many awards, including the Outstanding Achievement Award of the Forum for Death Education and Counseling in 1985, the Distinguished Career award of the Sociology Practice Association in 1990, the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Association of Death Educators and Counselors in 2016, and the Herman Feifel award of the International Work Group on Death, Dying, and Bereavement in 2008.

Bob was a close friend to a remarkable number of people in Minnesota and around the world. He was a visiting professor at universities and research institutions including Osmania University, Hyderabad, India; University of Cape Town, South Africa; St Luke’s College, Tokyo; and Nankai University, Tianjin, China; and Rode Kors Sykehjem, Bergen, Norway, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden, and University of California branches at Irvine, San Diego, and San Francisco and at the University of Vermont. He also served as visiting scholar and volunteer helper at St. Christopher’s Hospice, London, England.

Bob, a humorist by nature, loved to laugh and joke with friends and colleagues. He was superb at taking others seriously, at truly listening to them, and at being real with them. He had been through many personal encounters with death, including the death in childhood of a brother and the extraordinarily hard ways that that death played out in his family.

During retirement, he wrote the book Legacy: The Belief in Immortality and the Logic of Culture, which explores religious views of immortality from his sociological perspectives on death and dying. Fulton was an avid chess player and his last book was My World of Chess, published in 2013. Loyal friend and editor, Mary Drew, provided extensive help to Bob in getting these two books completed during his retirement.

Robert Fulton was born and raised in Toronto, Canada, and earned his PhD in sociology at Wayne State University in Detroit, MI. He is survived by three sons, David, Evan, and Regan, as well as two grandchildren, and his longtime companion, Meryl Baker. Bob also was loved by and fond of his many nieces and nephews as well as his surviving brother and sister, Edward and Gwenn. A memorial celebration of his life was held on September 24, 2016, at the University Club in Saint Paul, MN. He is greatly missed by many graduate students and hundreds of friends.

Ron Anderson, Paul Rosenblatt, Greg Owen, Joel Nelson, and Ira Reiss

Sheldon Stryker

1924-2016

Sheldon Stryker, Distinguished Emeritus Professor at Indiana University, passed away on May 4, 2016. He would have been 92 later that month. Sheldon began his career at Indiana University in 1950 and remained active within both Indiana University and the discipline of sociology until his death.

Sheldon was born on May 26, 1924, in St. Paul, MN. His mother died shortly after his birth. He was raised by his grandparents and aunts and grew up during the Great Depression. In his youth, he played basketball, billiards, and bridge, delivered newspapers and worked on his high school newspaper, earning the nickname “Scoop” Stryker. He loved jazz and among his most cherished possessions were records by Billie Holiday, Coleman Hawkins, Benny Goodman, and Dizzy Gillespie.

Sheldon served in the Army during World War II, becoming a battlefield medic in Europe and earning a Purple Heart medal after being wounded in France. After the war, he attended the University of Minnesota, where, upon the advice of a career counselor to pursue a career that involved helping people, he initially planned to study social work. Sheldon took sociology courses as a social work requirement and soon became drawn to sociology and the prospect of the academic life. He eventually earned his PhD from the University of Minnesota in 1955. In 1950, Sheldon’s mentor, Clifford Kirkpatrick, contacted Sheldon about an available teaching position at Indiana University. Despite many invitations from other schools to join their faculty, Sheldon remained a faculty member at Indiana University for over six decades.

During his tenure at Indiana University, he was chair of the sociology department from 1969-1975 and for nearly 25 years was director of a National Institute of Mental Health pre-doctoral and post-doctoral training program in Identity, Self, Role and Mental Health. Sheldon advanced structural symbolic interactionism and is the originator of Identity Theory, which is now a major theory in sociological social psychology that grew out of the structural symbolic interactionist frame.

In addition to his theoretical writings, his research emphasized scientific methods and quantitative analysis. He authored or co-authored eight books including the first Rose Monograph, Deviance, Selves and Others (1971 with Michael Schwartz) and the groundbreaking Symbolic Interactionism: A Social Structural Version (1980). He published over 70 journal articles and book chapters including the top all-time cited article in Social Psychology Quarterly and a second SPQ article in the top ten. Sheldon also served as the editor of the American Sociological Review (1982-1986) and Sociometry (now Social Psychology Quarterly, 1967-1969) and as the first editor of the American Sociological Association’s Arnold and Carolyn Rose Monographic Series (1971-1974). Sheldon was the exactly the right person to serve as editor: he valued both ideas and sociology as discipline. The care, effort, and concern for quality and clarity that he displayed as editor served as a role model for subsequent editors.

Sheldon received many honors recognizing his contributions in this career including the Cooley-Mead Award in 1986 for lifetime achievement from the American Sociological Association Social Psychology Section, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Society for Self and Identity in 2008. He was elected to the Sociological Research Association in 1970, the Society for Experimental Social Psychology in 1975, and was selected as Fellow of the Society for Experimental Social Psychology in 2009. He also received a Fulbright Fellowship in Italy (1966-1967) and spent a year at the Center for the Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences in Palo Alto (1986-1987). In 2009, he received American Sociological Association W.E.B. DuBois Career Award of Distinguished Scholarship Award for lifetime achievement. As noted in the award statement, “one would be hard-pressed to find a scholar who has accomplished as much as Sheldon Stryker has during the second half of the 20th century. The body of his lifetime work, which continues to thrive, has been exemplary to all sociologists.”

Although Sheldon officially retired in 2002, he did not slow down and instead continued to write, collaborate, and publish papers with his former students and colleagues, as well as his daughter, Robin, who followed in his footsteps. His two most recent manuscripts appeared last summer, and there are two papers under review. He continued to mentor graduate students and at the age of 90 lectured in Italy. He loved to attend the ASA annual meetings, where in the words of a former graduate student, “he walked around faster than most and complained that his son made him a carry cane that was slowing him down.” He also looked forward to the Departmental Alumni Night at the ASA meeting where people would always find him to reminisce and to talk about new research and ideas.

Sheldon outlived his beloved wife of 62 years Alyce Agranoff (Stryker) and is survived by his five children: Robin, professor of sociology at the University of Arizona-Tucson; Jeffrey, professor of chemistry at the University of Alberta in Edmonton; David, executive vice president and general counsel of the Huntsman Corp.; Michael, associate professor of jazz piano at Western Illinois University in Macomb; and Mark, arts reporter and critic with the Detroit Free Press.

In addition to his children, Sheldon is also survived by daughters-in-law Patricia Leake (Jeff), Kasandra Stryker (David); Kitty Karn (Michael) and Candace Stuart (Mark). Sheldon is also survived by grandsons Joshua Stryker, Joseph Stryker, and Samuel Stryker; granddaughters Captain Hannah Stryker Thomas (U.S. Army), Alyssa Stryker, and Emily Stryker; and four great-grandchildren.

We remember Sheldon for his integrity, for his intellectual spirit and inquisitive mind, and for the guidance he provided us through the years. He lived up to his oft-spoken aphorism that “smart people don’t have be bastards.” Sheldon was a smart person, great colleague, inspirational mentor, and generous friend. He will be dearly missed.

Donations may be made to the Sheldon Stryker Memorial Fund to support graduate education in sociology. Indiana University Foundation., P.O. Box 500, Bloomington, Indiana, 47402 (phone: 812-855-8311). To make a gift online, go to www. myiu.org and use the “write in gift area” to indicate that the gift is for the Sheldon Stryker Memorial/Sociology Fund.

Peter J. Burke, University of California Riverside; Brian Powell, Indiana University; Richard T. Serpe, Kent State University