Brian Sutton-Smith 1924 – 2015

Brian Sutton-Smith

1924 – 2015

Saturday March 7th. 2015

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Brian died this morning.

I was lucky enough to have met him and to have enjoyed his company at some of the Congresses of I.T.R.A. The International Toy Research Association. Brian was one of its founding members and I was the Secretariat for many years.

His books are old friends of mine and I see them whenever I enter the Library of E.C.G.I. The Educational Centre for Games in Israel. I dip into them frequently and meet up with old friends of mine who were his colleagues or his students.

Whenever I am asked for a definition of “play” I hear his voice saying: “only an unprofessional person asks for a definition of play”.

As a young teacher he wrote a book for his pupils. It began:

“Once upon a time there was a middle sized boy named Brian and he was called “Brin.” Now there was nothing unusual in this because very few boys are called by their own name. Sometimes they are called “Snowy,” and sometimes they are just called “Stinker,” but they are hardly ever called what they really are. So Brian was quite an ordinary sort of boy.”

Feisty.    Joyful.    Playful.    Wise.    Warm.    Friendly.

Unique storyteller.        Academic.         Educator.

 Beloved.        Respected.

We should all be that ordinary.

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