Russel Jones (1926 – 2019)
We are saddened to hear of the passing of Russel Jones, who was a noted scholar of Malay and Indonesian languages and culture. He was instrumental in founding the Indonesia Circle newsletter which over the years transformed into the academic journal Indonesia and the Malay World, published by Routledge.
“Russell was a key figure in what many Southeast Asianists regard as a ‘golden era’ at SOAS with the publication of ‘Indonesia Circle’ and a whole host of activities associated with the Malay-Indonesian world. You did not have to be associated with SOAS and anybody who was interested was invited to join. For example, Russell happily showed people how to read Jawi, the Arabic-derived Malay script, even if they were not registered as students at SOAS. He also directed people to readings in the magnificent library at SOAS and introduced members of Indonesia Circle to knowledgeable art collectors and authors who had experience of Malaysia and Indonesia. He had an abiding interest in paper manufacture globally, which included knowledge of the old paper mill in Kennell Vale near Stithians, Cornwall.”
(Michael Hitchcock, Professor in Cultural Policy and Tourism, Goldsmiths, University of London)