A memorial commemoration for the late Theodore J. Lowi, the John L. Senior Professor of American Institutions Emeritus, will be held Saturday, April 21, in the chapel at Anabel Taylor Hall. “Theodore J. Lowi: Celebrating A Half Century at Cornell,” from 4:30 to 6 p.m., will be followed by a reception in the Founders Room in Anabel Taylor Hall. Lowi died in 2017 at the age of 85.
Gretchen Ritter ’83, the Harold Tanner Dean of Arts and Sciences, who majored in government at Cornell, will speak at the memorial. She described Lowi as “a giant” in the field of American politics. “He spoke to all of the incoming freshmen the year I arrived. I remember being awed by him – he had amazing presence and his remarks were deeply insightful,” she said.
A charismatic government professor, Lowi taught Introduction to American Politics at Cornell for more than 35 years, one of the university’s most popular classes. He founded the Cornell in Washington Program and is the author of “The End of Liberalism,” “American Government” and “American Political Thought: A Norton Anthology” (co-edited with Isaac Kramnick), which became standards in political science discourse.
The American Political Science Association (APSA) named Lowi the top political scientist in the U.S. in 1978. He served as president of the association in 1991 and as president of the International Political Science Association 1997-2000. In a career filled with honors and accolades, Lowi was a Guggenheim fellow (1967-68) and a fellow in the National Endowment for the Humanities (1977-78). APSA presented him with the prestigious James Madison Award in 2008.
The memorial is organized by Lowi’s long-time colleagues, Richard Bensel, the Gary S. Davis Professor of Government, and Kramnick, the Richard J. Schwartz Professor of Government Emeritus.
Linda B. Glaser is a writer for the College of Arts and Sciences.