19 July 2011

Robb Westbrook

Late in this past Spring Term, my colleague Robb Westbrook was installed as the inaugural Joseph F. Cunningham Professor of History here at Rochester. It is an extremely well deserved, overdue honor. Robb is a remarkably accomplished intellectual historian. This is a picture of him, lifted from this story in The Rochester Review, giving a talk at the investiture. In my years at the university Robb has been an extremely generous colleague; he has twice tolerated my sitting in on his seminar on American Pragmatism. Indeed, it is likely that he's forgotten more about pragmatism than I ever have learned. Over the years he has sent a steady stream of smart graduate students my way - mostly for reading courses in this or that aspect of modern political theory or with requests that I serve as examiner on their oral exams. Given that my own department has virtually abandoned political theory as an area of graduate study, those students have provided a welcome source of insight and discussion. Robb and his students, in short, have been crucial to my intellectual life in Rochester. All I can say is Thanks!

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