Gottheil, Fred M. (1960-2013) | University of Illinois Archives

Name: Gottheil, Fred M. (1960-2013)

Historical Note:

Fred Gottheil was a Professor of Economics at the University of Illinois from 1959 to 2014, Professor Emeritus after his retirement, and director of the University's Center for Economic Education. His research focused on Marxian economics, the economics of the Middle East, and the oil industry. He served as a Consultant to the White House in Middle Eastern Affairs in 1977, and was a founding member and National Chairman of the American Professors for Peace in the Middle East, and editorial board member of the Middle East Review (1979-1990). Gottheil was a member of Academic Missions to the Middle East (Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Israel) which explored prospects for peace with local academics and public officials, and lectured at universities in Egypt, Syria, and Israel. Professor Gottheil was an outstanding educator and recipient of many university teaching awards.

Fred Gottheil was born December 1, 1931 in Montreal, Quebec to Jenny and Morris Gottheil. He earned his BA degree in Economics from McGill University in Canada in 1953. Gottheil then moved to the US and received an MA in Economics in 1957 and a PhD in Economics in 1959, both from Duke University. In 1959 he was hired as Assistant Professor in the Economics Department at the University of Illinois. Fred Gottheil was also a professor in the College of Medicine, University of Illinois (1992-2014), a Visiting Professor in the Department of Economics at Northwestern University (1965), and a Visiting Professor in the Department of Economics at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (1970-1971; 1973).

Professor Gottheil's first book was Marx's Economic Predictions and he later authored The Principles of Economics, now in its seventh edition. He published numerous articles as well as several book chapters on comparative economic systems, Marxian economics, the economics of oil, the economy of Israel and the Middle East, the so-called Irish miracle, health care economics, and other topics. Among his non-academic writings are an adaptation of William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice in which he replaced its Anti-Semitic references with quotes from other works by Shakespeare, as well as a children's book which his wife published privately after his death. Gottheil was also involved in public policy and during the Carter administration served as a White House consultant on the Middle East and offered expert testimony to several Congressional committees.

Gottheil's son Joshua died from lymphoma at age 19. In tribute to Joshua's memory and the medical team, Gottheil and his wife Diane founded the Josh Gottheil Memorial Fund for Lymphoma Research that provides educational grants to oncology nurses. They also established the Josh Gottheil Youth to Israel Fund as part of the CU Jewish Endowment Foundation, and, in tribute to their son's love for music, the Josh Gottheil Music Award is presented to a student at Urbana Middle School every year.

Fred Gottheil died on April 17, 2016 at the age of 84.


Obituary for Professor Fred Gottheil, Illinois Economics blog.

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