With Love and Gratitude By Daughters Martha L. Hansen & Ellen Dunham In his soon-to-be-published book, Forgetting and Forgotten: Dementia and The Right To Die, our father, W. Lee Hansen, describes the mother we once knew, a woman known and loved for her sense of humor, her intelligence, her love of the English language, and her dedication to her teaching career. How tragic it was that our highly verbal mother, who loved nothing more than a lively conversation, came to the end of her life virtually mute. Likewise, her physical activity dwindled, as did her always active and vibrant social life. The crossword puzzles she had enjoyed, the books she had devoured, the friends she had treasured – all were lost to her as she was left isolated in a world devoid of meaning and filled with fear, anger, and sadness. Adding to the poignancy of the situation was the fact that dementia was a fate our mother had long dreaded, and she had for years been a steadfast supporter of Death with Dignity. Read more.
Memorial Day - Lest We Forget The purpose of Memorial Day is to honor the many young American men who served in the nation’s wars—World War I, World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, and our most recent military adventures in the Middle East. Out of respect for the many Americans who fought and died fighting this country’s wars, I am always drawn to attend Memorial Day events. These gatherings are especially meaningful for two reasons. Read more.
On Turkey’s February 2023 Devastating Earthquakes Man-made tragedies and natural disasters come and go so quickly that we can barely keep track of them. Nothing could be worse that the combination of a natural disaster and a man-made disaster waiting to happen. I refer, of course, to the two major earthquakes in southern Turkey several weeks ago and the mass destruction that followed---now more than 45,000 deaths in Turkey alone, with many more still missing, more than 100,000 injured, almost 200,000 buildings destroyed, and millions left homeless. Read more.
W. Lee Hansen is Professor Emeritus of Economics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He served as a Senior Staff Economist with the President's Council of Economic Advisers, held a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Chicago, and had visiting appointments at the University of Minnesota, London School of Economics, University of Maastricht, and University of Western Australia. He has won a number of awards for his teaching, research, and professional service. He published approximately 200 articles and book chapters and authored/edited a dozen books. He is currently working on two manuscripts, The Forgotten: Dementia and the Right to Die, and Reinvigorating Liberal Education: An Expected Proficiencies Approach to the College Major. He continues work on a memoir about his Korean War Military experience, and he writes occasional essays on wartime-related events. Full bio.