Remembering Professors William Dobriner and Earl Pope

William M. Dobriner, Charles A. Dana Professor Emeritus of Anthropology and Sociology, died Oct. 8, and Earl A. Pope, Helen H.P. Manson Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies, died Oct. 18. The Lafayette faculty adopted memorial resolutions on Dec. 6.

Appointed Dana Professor of Sociology in 1971, Dobriner was the first head of the newly created anthropology and sociology department. Over the next 17 years, he built the department, including hiring Dan Bauer, Howard Schneiderman, and Susan Niles. An expert on suburban America, he won the Jones Faculty Lecture Award in 1974.

Dobriner earned a Ph.D. in sociology from Columbia University and taught at Hofstra before coming to Lafayette. He retired in 1988. His daughters and son-in-law are Gail Dobriner Wertheim ’76, Jill Dobriner ’79, and Glenn Wertheim ’76.

Pope joined the faculty in 1960 and taught in the religion department for 30 years. A specialist in American religious history, he later turned his attention to religious life in Communist-dominated Eastern Europe. A member of the Russian and East European Studies faculty, he co-directed student trips to Russia and Romania. He became a leader in organizations dedicated to the culture and politics of Romania.

Department head from 1977 to 1985, Pope also served as dean of studies (1970-72) and on many faculty committees. He received the Jones Faculty Award for superior teaching and Lindback Award for distinguished teaching and contributions to the campus community.

Pope earned a M.Div. degree from Yale University Divinity School and Ph.D. in religious studies and American history from Brown University.

Read more.