RIP Lisa Jardine @ProfLisaJardine

So sad to lose Lisa Jardine. I was lost for words last night as the news came through via Twitter, and today maybe 95% of my Twitter activity feed has been dedicated to her. That may say something about the kind of people I follow on Twitter, but she surely made an impression on those who encountered her. Genuinely appreciated and missed by many.

Little I can add to the tributes from friends who knew her as colleagues at Cambridge, QML and UCL, and the many varied groups she worked with. Like her father, she impressed me on radio and TV before I’d ever met her and I’d already blogged a few references. I count myself lucky to have met her 3 or 4 times in the last two years working in London, and blogged those encounters.

Having discovered she shares that same “Bronowski moment” so many of us shared, and seen how close she was to her father as his celebrity was cut short by his own ill-health and death, it was fascinating to hear her talk on her work researching and writing his biography, like a true historian valuing the necessary interpretation, the imaginative filling-in and story-telling. I think my last interaction with her on Twitter was to ask how that publishing deadline was coming along. I wonder now what will become of that unfinished project.

But as one door closes others open. Historian David Cesarani, who also died yesterday, is someone I was only vaguely aware of until now. And Alison Jardine, her daughter-in-law, was introduced to many via Lisa’s Twitter feed, sharing examples of her artistic works and successes. Beyond viewing such pieces on-line, I’d never really looked at Alison’s on-line profile until now. Imagine my surprise to find she is based in Deep Ellum, that little Bohemia the wrong side of the interstate in downtown Dallas. Having visited Dallas several times, usually on a day or two breaks away from other business in Texas over the years, I’ve returned to bars, restaurants and music clubs between Elm, Main and Commerce, the opposite end from Dealey Plaza. A favourite spot.

Life after death is assured for memories of Lisa.

[Post Note : This has to be one of the best tributes, from Erica Wagner. Conveys the faith in humanity behind the intellect.]

[Post Note – And this New Humanist interview with Laurie Taylor.]

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