In Memoriam: Christoph Houswitschka

“’Tis a vile thing to die, my gracious lord,
When men are unprepared and look not for it.”
(William Shakespeare, Richard III, Act III, Scene II)

We are grieving the unexpected loss of Prof. Dr. Christoph Houswitschka, who passed away prematurely at the age of 60 on 10 February 2022. Ever since he accepted the Chair of English Literature in Bamberg, he has been our ‘pater familias’ as a kind superior, generous and supportive supervisor, inspiring mentor and loyal friend.

In the confidence with which he approached the challenges of day-to-day business and his benevolence and self-sacrificing attitude towards the concerns of students and staff, he was always an indispensable pillar of support for us, and he’ll remain an important role model. Without him, we feel orphaned. We will miss his warmth, his extraordinary wit, his somewhat eccentric puns, his encyclopaedic knowledge and our conversations (and fierce debates) about history, literature, philosophy, politics and baked goods.

His current and former students remember him as a brilliant and resourceful teacher and as a patient supervisor who freely gave of his time and expertise and was always interested in his students as individuals. He encouraged them to believe in themselves, especially during the more challenging phases of their academic careers. Junior colleagues throughout the Institute remember the advice and support he offered at crucial moments. He was always passionate about bringing together people from all over the world and thrived on international classroom environments.

He was an extraordinary human being, and we feel privileged to have worked with him and to have called him our friend. Our thoughts are with his wife, his sons, and entire family.

Christoph, we promise to keep the ship sailing on.

Susan Brähler and Kerstin-Anja Münderlein
for the Chair of English Literature

Virtual book of condolences

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