In Memory of Geoff Nunberg
Adjunct professor Geoffrey Nunberg passed away on August 11, 2020.
Geoff was a dear colleague, teacher, mentor, and friend — brilliant, generous, thoughtful, witty, and kind. He will be deeply missed.
We invite you to share your memories of and tributes to Geoff Nunberg.
Just a small thing, but I’m grateful for that little interaction, and for how he was continuing to think about how words shape our experience, even in the final months of his life and even — especially — during the crisis we’re all living through. As far as I know he didn't publish anything ruminating on the etymology and history of “pandemic,” but if someone knows that he did I would love to see it. I will miss him.
(By the way, I think he’d want me to mention that “pandemic” is from the Greek “pan-” meaning “all” and “demo-” meaning “people,” so it is “of or belonging to the whole people” and shares a root with “democracy.”)
Things aren’t going to be quite the same without him. I guess there won’t be a Geoff Nunberg ‘word of the year’ this year, and that is just really sad.