Ejner Jacob Jensen, 83, of Philadelphia, professor emeritus of English language and literature, died April 21 at the Phoebe Allentown Home in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

Ejner Jacob Jensen
Ejner Jacob Jensen

Jensen was born Jan. 28, 1937, in Omaha, Nebraska, to Maynhild and Jacob Jensen. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Carleton College in 1959, his Master of Arts degree in English from Tulane University in 1960, and his Ph.D. in English from Tulane in 1965.

From 1964-2004, he was a professor in the U-M English department, focusing on Renaissance drama.

Jensen actively participated in faculty governance. He was a member of the Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs and served as its vice chair from 1991-92 and chair from 1992-93, as well as participated in or chaired several of its committees.

He also was special counsel to the president of the university, working to improve administration and faculty relations, and as a member of many department and university committees. In 1995, he served as interim secretary of the university.

Jensen authored several books and essays, including “Shakespeare and the Ends of Comedy,” “Ben Jonson’s Comedies on the Modern Stage” and “Chuck it to Me, Mr. Jensen, Baby.” He also edited “The Future of Nineteen Eighty-Four.”

He was an instructor at summer writing workshops for high school English teachers at the University of Iowa, and was the director of U-M’s Sweetland Center for Writing from 1999-2002.

He is survived by his wife, Rosemary “Pozi” Jensen; children Sten (Michelle) Jensen and Maren (Nancy McCorry) Jensen; children by marriage Pamela Tobin, Audrey (John) Creighton, James Tobin, and Maria (Rich) Lanigan; 13 grandchildren; and sisters Karen (Bill) Dunham and Barbara Slocum. His 1959 marriage to Lineve Grace McKie ended in divorce in 1984.

Services will be held at a date to be determined at St. Peter’s Church, 300 Pine St., Philadelphia. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Jensen’s name to Carleton College.

Submitted by the Jensen family

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