LINGUIST List 23.5029

Mon Dec 03 2012

All: In Memoriam: Dieter Kastovsky

Editor for this issue: Kristen Dunkinson <>

Date: 03-Dec-2012
From: Anke Beck <>
Subject: In Memoriam: Dieter Kastovsky
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“Well-read” and “widely published” are certainly terms which can be attributed to the late Dieter Kastovsky, Prof. em. of English Linguistics and Director of the Centre for Translation Studies in Vienna. One could also call him “a true European”, if not an “activist” who believed in the importance of durable exchange of students and academic staff, building networks of personal and professional contacts, particularly between Institutions of higher education within the European Union but also beyond. Unsurprisingly, he supported academic exchange programs like SOKRATES and TEMPUS.

As long as I knew Dieter his special concern was to work with institutions in eastern and central Europe and the Balkans. The basis of his commitment to this part of the world goes back to his early membership in the Societas Linguistica Europaea (SLE) in the late 1960s which, during the time of the Cold War, was able to form a bridge between academics in both worlds when nobody thought it possible. Dieter continued his undivided support for the Societas until now and served as its General Secretary from 1991 – 2006.

In honor of his 60st birthday, and also in honor of his contributions to the field of linguistics, his colleagues under the editorship of Profs. Christiane Dalton-Puffer and Nikolaus Ritt published a Festschrift with De Gruyter Mouton. The tabula gratulatoria was very long, Dieter Kastovsky´s bibliography even longer. We could have published three volumes instead of the agreed single volume and the editors told me that it was difficult for them to stop colleagues from submitting. Dieter continued to attend the meetings of the SLE even after leaving his official position with the Societas. We stopped meeting each other when I handed over the De Gruyter Mouton program to my successor Uri Tadmor to take on other responsibilities at De Gruyter. But Dieter and his wonderful, winsome, always very cheerful wife Professor Barbara Kryk-Kastovsky were not the kind of people who kept friendships only because of professional relationships. We kept in contact, by phone-calls or e-mail exchanges. With unprecedented reliability around this time of the year, my colleagues and I would receive colourful postcards from the most curious parts around the world and a short summary what happened to the Kastovskys during the year. I remember him smiling with Barbara into a camera with a Koala bear in the background and everybody in the office was envying them for their love of adventure, their joyfulness, their obvious appreciation for each other and their Lebenslust.

Barbara, we share your grief; we will not forget Dieter and will always think of him – not only around Christmas.

On behalf of all colleagues at DE GRUYTER MOUTON

Anke Beck
Kirstin BörgenEmily FarrellJennifer MandJulie Miess
Barbara KarlsonKatja Lehming
Marcia SchwartzBirgit Sievert
Uri Tadmor
Lara Wysong

Genthiner Str. 13, 10785 Berlin

Linguistic Field(s): Not Applicable

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