John Anderson

Anderson, John, 1893–1962, Scottish-Australian philosopher, b. Scotland. A graduate of the Univ. of Glasgow, he taught (1918–27) at the universities of Cardiff, Glasgow, and Edinburgh before becoming professor of philosophy at the Univ. of Sydney, Australia (1927–58). His extreme concern for independence of thought led to a controversial academic career because he attacked many institutions (including Christianity, social welfare, and Communism) for encouraging servility. Philosophically he warred against ultimates of every sort, but his philosophy was inclusive rather than negative, stressing the complexity of experience—a complexity not reducible to any ultimate units or wholes—and the limits of any one description of it. His articles were collected in Studies in Empirical Philosophy (1962).

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