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Obituaries

01 May 2002 |

Bent Hansen
Bent Hansen, professor emeritus of economics, known for his seminal work in macroeconomics, public finance, development and Middle Eastern economic history, died in Alexandria, Egypt at the age of 81.

Hansen was a Berkeley professor of economics from 1966 to 1998 and served as chair of the economics department from 1977 to 1985. He also was on the faculty of the campus’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies in the Institute for International Studies and was the center’s director from 1984 to 1985.

His work established the importance of doing conventional macroeconomics and microeconomics in underdeveloped countries and set new standards for development economics, said George Akerlof, a former colleague of Hansen’s and winner of the 2001 Nobel Prize in economics. Models resulting from Hansen’s studies were developed for Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Thailand and other developing countries.

Akerlof remarked on Hansen’s careful use of data from hard-to-access sources. “He was not the development economist in the airplane, but instead the development economist in the archives,” Akerlof said. “He was the greatest development economist of his generation.”

A native of Denmark, Hansen was a prolific author who wrote numerous articles and books on the economic theories of development, interest rates, and foreign trade and exchange. He also served as a consultant to international agencies and governments, including Morocco, Turkey, Egypt, Denmark and Syria. Three of his books focused on Egypt, where he lived the last four years of his life.

In one of his studies, Hansen looked at what Egyptian laborers did with their spare time, in an effort to dispel the surplus labor argument. He dug into old records to compute index numbers, measured the rate of return on the Suez Canal, analyzed Egyptian crop quotas, and co-authored a book about the performance of the Egyptian economy.

 

 
 

david wood

David Wood


David Wood
Renowned dancer, choreographer and professor emeritus David Wood, who founded the campus’s dance program, died April 21 of complications from Parkinson’s disease and muscular dystrophy. He was 77.

During his career, Wood served as a rehearsal director and soloist with the Martha Graham Dance Company and danced with a number of other groups. He appeared on television, in Broadway musicals, and with the Metropolitan and New York City Opera companies.

“He was a magnificent jumper and very light on his feet,” said his wife, Marnie Thomas, who worked with him at the Martha Graham Dance Company. “He could take off and hang in the air.”

Born in Fresno, Calif., in 1925, Wood graduated from Berkeley on his 20th birthday and was commissioned the same day into the U.S. Navy.

After the end of World War II, he studied acting and dance at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York City. In 1949, he began his professional career as a teacher and dancer.
Wood began his 15-year association with Martha Graham in 1953, performing and touring with her company, along with teaching in her school. Of the many roles she created for him, Wood may be best known for his portrayal of the messenger of death in Graham’s epic “Clytemnestra.”

In 1968, he established the dance program at Berkeley and founded the Bay Area Repertory Dance resident dance company.
Among his awards, Wood received the Berkeley Citation and the Distinguished Teaching Award; an Isadora Duncan Lifetime Achievement Award, with his wife, from the Bay Area community; and two choreography grants from the National Endowment for the Arts.

He was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy in 1983 and with Parkinson’s disease in 1993, the same year that he retired from teaching. He nevertheless retained a positive outlook on life, Thomas said. “He didn’t have a lot of sorrows or regrets; he had had his day.”

Wood is survived by his wife, Marnie Thomas; daughters, Marina Marlowe-Wood of San Mateo, Calif., Raegan Sanders of Montclair, N.J., and Ellis Wood of New York City; sisters, Phyllis Anne Tidyman and Barbara Crockett; and five grandchildren.

The family welcomes contributions to the David Wood Endowment, c/o of the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies, 101 Dwinelle Annex, UC Berkeley, Berke-ley, CA 94720-2560. Checks should be made payable to the UC Berkeley Foundation — Department of Theater, Dance and Performance Studies. Memorial services will be private.

 


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