Publication Details

Castree, N. (2016). A tribute to Doreen Massey (3 January 1944-11 March 2016). Progress in Human Geography: an international review of geographical work in the social sciences and humanities, 40 (5), 585-592.


Great people not only make waves during their lifetime; they continue to influence and inspire others long after they have gone. Doreen Massey's passing is hard to bear, but her large and extraordinarily rich legacy will endure. She was a truly exceptional geographer and one, moreover, esteemed far beyond her chosen discipline. She was a philosopher, empirical researcher, educator, political activist and, in recent years, a public intellectual. Her geography knew few topical bounds, spanning the economic, political, cultural and even physical parts of the subject. Her theoretical-political lenses were equally wide angle, but avowedly of the Left. She authored not just one or two formative publications but many; her numerous books, articles and chapters changed the way we understand the world and our place in it. She was a superb communicator: her lectures and seminars could be riveting, while her written English was full of memorable formulations. She was as committed to student education as she was to scholarship; she valued political commentary as much as abstract theorizing (and, to that end, helped set up Soundings with Stuart Hall and Michael Rustin in 1995). She was a high-energy, multi-talented individual and a frequent collaborator, generous with her time and ideas. She was also principled and - when occasion called for it - fearless. Throughout her remarkable life she showed us what it means to be a politically committed scholar for whom research, pedagogy, activism and public engagement are all connected organically.



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