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In Passing

Sun., March 18, 2007

Rockville, Md.

William Sturtevant, ethnologist

William C. Sturtevant, a curator emeritus of North American ethnology at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and a leading scholar on the traditional cultures of North American tribes, died March 2 at a nursing home in Rockville, Md. He was 80 and had emphysema.

Sturtevant’s career with the Smithsonian spanned half a century, beginning in 1956 as an ethnologist at the Bureau of American Ethnology. When the bureau closed nearly 10 years later, Sturtevant became a curator in the anthropology department at Natural History, a position he held until retiring in January.

He continued to work at his office as curator until his death.

Among his colleagues and peers, he was known for his encyclopedic knowledge of the material culture of Native Americans and the importance of clothing, cooking utensils, tools and art as identity markers.

Stamford, Conn.

Joel Brodsky, photographer

Joel Brodsky, a photographer whose memorable album cover pictures of Jim Morrison, Isaac Hayes, Aretha Franklin and dozens of other performers helped define the visual image of popular music in the 1960s and ‘70s, died of a heart attack March 1 at his home in Stamford, Conn. He was 67.

Brodsky was an artist of a now-obsolete format, using the 12 3/8-inch square of the album cover as his canvas for pictures that varied from moody portraits to surreal atmospheric scenes to stylized illustrations of ideas. He photographed about 400 album covers for a diverse cast of musicians that included B.B. King, Carly Simon, Barry Manilow, Kiss, Iggy Pop and Gladys Knight and the Pips.

His best-known picture, made at his New York studio in late 1966, shows a bare-chested Morrison of the Doors, with his arms outstretched. Featured on the cover of the 1985 “The Best of the Doors” album, the black-and-white image depicts the messianic, sensitive and dangerous qualities that made Morrison such an important musical figure of his time.

Amman, Jordan

Saadoun Hammadi, Saddam ally

Saadoun Hammadi, a longtime ally of Saddam Hussein and one of the most senior Iraq Baath party leaders – who also served as a rare Shiite prime minister under Saddam – has died in a hospital in Germany, a Baath party spokesman and the party’s Web site said.

Hammadi was released from a prison camp in Iraq in February 2004, after nine months in the custody of U.S. troops. He left Iraq for medical treatment in Jordan, Lebanon and Germany, but settled in Qatar in early 2005. He was believed to be suffering from leukemia.

Under Saddam, Hammadi held the posts of foreign and oil minister, and was the last speaker of the Iraqi parliament up to the 2003 U.S. invasion.

A U.S.-educated proponent of economic liberalization and reforms, Hammadi received a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Wisconsin in 1956.


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