August 27, 2009
Barbara Ellen Johnson, a resident of Cambridge for the past 27 years, died Thursday, August 27th, 2009 at her home after a long illness. She was 61. Barbara was born October 4th, 1947 in Boston, Massachusetts, the only daughter of Gilbert H., and Priscilla C. “Pat” (James) Johnson. She graduated from Westwood High School with the Class of 1965, earned her undergraduate degree from Oberlin College, and her PHD from Yale. Barbara was one of the two Presidential Scholars from Massachusetts in 1965, and she was a world renown literary critic. Ms Johnson was the author of several books including Defigurations du langage poetique, The Critical Difference, A World of Difference, The Wake of Deconstruction, The Feminist Difference, and her latest book, Persons and Things. She was a Frederic Wertham Professor of Law and Psychiatry in Society at Harvard University where she taught for the past 25 years. In addition to her mother Pat Johnson of Westwood, Ms Johnson is survived by her three brothers; Peter D. Johnson of Washington, DC, Bruce Pollack- Johnson of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Christopher C. Johnson of Scituate. A Memorial Service will be held Sunday, August 30th at 2 PM in the First Parish of Westwood United Church with the Reverend Christopher Dodge officiating. Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers donations to the Memorial Fund of the First Parish Church, 340 Clapboardtree Street, Westwood, MA 02090 would be appreciated.