Thursday, January 19, 2006

The professor of hope moves on

I was saddened today to read of the death of University of Kansas Professor Rick Snyder, who specialized in studying hope.

I never met Snyder, but I’ve read about him on and off over the years. It always seemed to me that his work and message are important for all of us to hear, particularly in these times when it can be so easy to fall victim to anger, cynicism and despair.

The J-W reports:
He was internationally known for his work at the interface of clinical, social, personality and health psychology, according to KU. His theories pertained to how people react to personal feedback, the human need for uniqueness, the ubiquitous drive to excuse transgressions and the hope motive.
The newspaper also reported that Snyder suffered from chronic pain. He was only 61 when he died.
“My goal is to get just a few people to live their lives more hopefully,” Snyder told the Journal-World in 2004. “I think if you do that, maybe hope can have a ripple effect. I don’t have any grandiose goals or anything, but I think it can make a difference if we just try to instill hope in our own small corners of the world.”
Rest in peace, Dr. Snyder. I suspect that your mission was well accomplished.

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