Robert A. Dahl, one of the world’s most distinguished political scientists, passed away last Wednesday at the age of 98. Dahl made seminal contributions to the study of power and democracy. Several of his books have become classics, including “Who Governs?”, ” Polyarchy” and “Democracy and its Critics.” He published the latter book when he was 74, and it was not his last. I doubt that there is any political scientist who does not have at least a basic familiarity with his work.
We will have more personal reflections from one of his prominent former students next week. In the meantime, there are obituaries in the New York Times, the Associated Press, Yale Daily News (and here). By all accounts, he was not just a highly prolific scholar but also a great mentor and human being. He will be missed.