I first met Dr. Isaacs in the late 1990s. Since then, I maintained contact with him and also met with him a number of times. I found him to be very nice, warm and helpful. He was a gentleman and a scholar in the true sense of the terms. His contribution to Third World studies is enormous. His passing away is an irreparable loss to the academic community in particular and to the world in general.
Najmul Abedin, Professor, Department of Public Management & Criminal Justice, Austin Peay State University, Tennessee
I was a colleague of Dr. Harold Isaacs at Georgia Southwestern State University (GSW) in Americus, Georgia. I first met Harry in August 2009 when I first came to GSW. He was among the first persons I met. He was very welcoming and made me feel at home. We spent some time talking about my research interests in Jimmy Carter and the Carter presidency. Harry told me that he had known Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter for many years and that he published a book about Carter's election in 1976. The book was entitled, Jimmy Carter's Peanut Brigade. He was not only a fine historian and teacher; Harry was a witness to history.
Since 2009, Harry and I had several conversations about President Carter and the Carter family; usually, these took place before our 6:30pm Wednesday evening classes. He shared his rich experiences with delight, experiences that dated back to when Carter first ran for governor in 1966. For both his 1966 and 1970 bids for governor, Harry explained that Carter or some member of the Carter family would come to GSW to enlist support. Sometimes, a family member would visit the history and political science department asking for a contribution. Harry was a loyal supporter. He always appreciated that fact that Carter was a friend of the Third World and that he prioritized improving U.S. relations with the Third World as president and as a former president.
In February 2015, Harry asked Dr. Brian Parkinson and me to participate in the Third World Studies Lecture Series for April 14.1 was very excited about this, and honored to be invited to present. Past programming was very good and there was always a decent turnout from the GSW community. He wanted to do something on the United States and the Middle East. Dr. Parkinson, an associate professor of history at GSW, presented on Iran, specifically the rise and fall of Muhammad Reza Shah Pahlavi (19191980). The Islamic world is his area of specialty. I discussed the role of U.S. presidential leadership in the Arab-Israeli Conflict, chiefly President Carter's 1978-1979 peace efforts with Israel and Egypt and his desire to see peace and justice in Israel and Palestine.
The April 14th seminar turned out to be Harry's last. We all feared that it would be. We knew about his health and that he would not be with us for long. Harry concluded the evening with a hope that he would see everyone at the next Third World Seminar.
Now, after his passing, memories of the lecture series are even more precious. Some videos of the Third World in Perspective Program Seminar Series, including the last one, are available on the GSW YouTube page, https://www.youtube.com/user/GeorgiaSouthwestern. Available are lectures from 2013 to 2015 that cover issues and developments in the Ukraine, Bulgaria, Panama, Vietnam, and the South Pacific.
D. Jason Berggren, Assist. Professor of Political Science, Georgia Southwestern State University
I first met Harold at a Third World Studies conference in Omaha, Nebraska in the 1980s. It was early on in my stay in the hinterland, having spent most of my life on the east coast and particularly in Florida. This was the beginning of a movement to establish organizations concerned with the "Third World" and I was excited that it had made some impact on the Great Plains, my home for six years. That organization ceased to exist last decade long after I returned to the South, while the Association of Third World Studies is in the midst of its fourth decade of existence, with chapters in various parts of the world, thanks in large measure to the dreams and guidance of Harold. I cannot remember now what the subject of my presentation in Omaha was, but I do recall the impression that Harold made on me then. He was always a gentleman and became a good friend. I subsequently participated in many ATWS meetings, working on building up the organization and the Journal of Third World Studies. Along the way, I never felt that I was imposing on him when calling up on the telephone or e-mailing him about organizational matters or simply to say hello. Harold will be sorely missed!
Michael B. Bishku, Professor of History, Augusta University
When I was at the early stages of my academic career in the United States, I received a letter from Dr. Harold Isaacs inviting me to join the newly-established Association of Third World Studies (ATWS). I did not know Harold at that time, but the goals and objectives of ATWS as described by Harold were compelling. Therefore, I responded right away and joined ATWS and eventually became a life member of it. From its modest beginning, ATWS evolved into the largest organization of its kind with a global membership and active chapters in several Third World regions. It is no exaggeration to say that without Harold's herculean effort and selfless dedication, ATWS may not have gotten off the ground. Over the years, Harold became the public face of ATWS and its most ardent supporter, both during his tenure as the Association's president and after his presidency.
Likewise, the Journal of Third World Studies (JTWS), ATWS's flagship journal, had a modest beginning but through Harold's yeoman-like effort as its editor, JTWS became an important tool for publishing academic and policy-oriented scholarship on many facets of the Third World. I was honored to have been asked by Harold to become a member of JTWS's Editorial Board. Over...