Death of Professor Gerhard A. Ritter

Death of Professor Gerhard A. Ritter

23 June 2015

 

Gerhard A. Ritter, 1929-2015

The college is sad to report that Professor Gerhard A. Ritter passed away last week in Berlin.  He had been an Honorary Fellow at the College since 1983, and was one of the most widely respected and influential postwar German historians.  Ritter was born in 1929 in Berlin, and studied at the Universität Tübingen and the Freie Universität Berlin.  He was one of the pioneers of comparative European history, and was particularly interested in the history of the working classes and its movements, the history of the welfare state, constitutional history and parliamentarism, and later the economic problems of German Reunification. From 1952 to 1954 Ritter held a postdoctoral fellowship at St Antony’s College, and received a B.Litt. from Oxford in 1959.  Over his long and distinguished career Ritter taught at the Freie Universität Berlin, Universität Münster, and the Universität München until his retirement in 1994, and was a renowned teacher as well as scholar.  Ritter was a Visiting Fellow at the European Studies Centre in 1965-66 and again in 1972-1973.  He was instrumental in establishing the Richard von Weizsaecker Fellowship at the European Studies Centre, and we are profoundly indebted to his commitment and service to the college over the decades.