Swedish sociologist’s death mourned

Condolence meeting held at MSSRF

February 01, 2019 01:35 am | Updated 01:35 am IST - CHENNAI

Long-time friends and associates of eminent Swedish sociologist Staffan Lindberg came together on Thursday to condole his sudden passing a couple of weeks ago.

In a meeting at the M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation, they all recalled how he was a very warm person and a remarkable human being. N. Ram, Chairman, THG Publishing Pvt. Limited, said that the most memorable thing about Staffan was when his field area was hit by drought, he and his colleague decided to give up the study and distribute the grant money.

“But luckily, it rained and they did not have to do that,” he said. Staffan had come to study Tamil at Annamalai University in 1966, Mr. Ram added.

‘40 year association’

Economist Venkatesh B. Athreya said his association with Staffan began 40 years ago and there have been many instances when they argued about many things but their association only became stronger. “His passing came as a shock to many of us. He was in India only in December last year,” he said.

Sucha Singh Gill of the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development said that Staffan not only had friends in Tamil Nadu but also in Punjab.

“In 2003-04, he came with us for field work to examine the agrarian structure and farmers’ movement in our State. He stayed with us and by the end of it, we started calling him Staffan Singh. He even developed a fondness for Punjabi food,” he recalled.

Lars Eklund, another long-time friend who worked with Staffan in the journal SYDASIAN and then the academic network SASNET (Swedish South Asian Studies Network), said the magazine was launched due to the imposition of Emergency and also due to the political situation in neighbouring countries.

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