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Thomas Sebastian

Hal Barger
Thomas Sebastian

It is with deep sadness we announce the death of Thomas Sebastian, professor of German in the department of modern languages and literatures. Professor Sebastian died Monday, Sept. 27, of cancer.  He was 53.
A native of Germany, Professor Sebastian received a Diplom-Sozialwirt from the Hochschule für Wirtschaft und Politik in Hamburg.  He also received a master’s in German Literature from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a doctorate in German Literature from Johns Hopkins University.
Professor Sebastian came to Trinity in 1992 as an assistant professor.  He taught several different courses during his career at Trinity including German language and literature, History of German Culture and Civilization, Readings from Western Culture, and the Faust Tradition.  He became a full professor in 2008.
During his long career at Trinity, Professor Sebastian was very involved in the academic life of the University.  He served as coordinator of HUMA 1600, was a member of the University Curriculum Counsel, chairman of the Advising and Registration Committee, and member of the Faculty Senate.
He was a member of several professional organizations including the German Studies Association, the Semiotic Society of America, and the Hermann Broch Society.
Professor Sebastian also authored numerous publications and presentations, including the books Der Gang der Geschichte. Studie zur Rhetorik der Zeitlichkeit in Hermann Broch’s Romantrilogie and The Intersection of Science and Literature in Robert Musil’s The Man Without Qualities.  His most recent publication was “Counter Voice in Adaptation: Elisabeth Langgässer's Reappearance in Cordelia Edvardson's Memoir Burned Child Seeks the Fire,” which appeared in a book of essays titled Reworking the German Past. Adaptations in Film, the Arts, and Popular Culture. 
He is survived by his wife, Judith Geerke, and daughters Antonia and Cecilia.  A memorial service will be held at 5 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 7, in the Margarite B. Parker Chapel with the Rev. Stephen Nickle officiating. 

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