1926 Ð 2000
Dr. Herman (Henri) Lau, former Associate Professor of Philosophy, died March 3 in Hanover, Ont., at the age of 73.
Dr. Lau's scholarly interests were in the philosophy of education, existentialism and theories of knowledge. He was born in 1926 in the Netherlands, and began teaching at Loyola in 1959. Initially, he taught French, and was instrumental in setting up the Loyola language lab. In the mid-1960s, however, he began teaching philosophy, and continued to do so until his retirement in 1991.
Philosophy Professor Christopher Gray reflected that "Henri enhanced our European perspectives, as did four other emigré colleagues, by including Habermas when he was still unknown to even our Marxist colleagues. Equally special was the focus on Whitehead's process philosophy in American thought, which he fostered.
"Henri played a major role in forming ACFAS and the Société de la philosophie de Québec.
"Students best remember him outside class, however, for his relentless devotion to their advising and their undergraduate curriculum over many years, through the most disrupted times of the Loyola-SGW merger. Most would never hear his stories, though, of working with the Dutch Resistance in World War II by carrying messages along diketops as a youth.
Our sympathies are extended to his wife Joanna, their sons Mark and Stephen, daughter Annique and their families. A memorial service was held on March 8 in Hanover, and the family has suggested that memorial donations be made to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario.
Copyright 2000 Concordia's Thursday Report.