John Gardner at Home

Memories from Victor Tadros

Dear John,

I’m writing because I just received an email from Jeff that your cancer has returned. I didn’t know that you had been diagnosed previously, and I can’t say how sorry I am to hear that you are going through this. My thoughts are with you.

Included in Jeff’s email was a note from Jenny asking us to help you remember things from the past. We’ve known each other for a pretty long time - since I was a doctoral student at King’s and you were blazing a trail as the smartest young legal philosopher in the country. The main thing that I remember – in the fog of my Foucault-inspired confusion – is the extraordinary generosity that you had in giving me your time, and in challenging my ideas, but never in a way that made me feel like I was as hopeless a case as I was! Since then, I’ve always found you and your work extraordinarily engaging, and agreeing and disagreeing with your views helped to form my work as a philosopher. I really am grateful for all that, and your energy, originality and intellectual firepower have always been things to marvel at. I hope that all that is still undimmed in what must be incredibly trying times.

Anyway, John, stay strong and positive, and I wish that things were different for you just now.

With the warmest wishes