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John Anderson (1893–1962) by Sir William Dobell, 1962 ? DACS 2010; University of Sydney Art Collection, John Anderson Testimonial Fund, 1962. Reproduced courtesy of Sir William Dobell Art Foundation

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Anderson, John (1893–1962), philosopher and social critic, was born in Stonehouse, Lanarkshire, 30 miles south-west of Glasgow, on 1 November 1893, the third of the five children of a radical schoolmaster, Alexander Anderson (1863–1947), and his wife, Elizabeth Brown (d. 1942), teacher, pianist, and poet....

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Astell, Mary (1666–1731), philosopher and promoter of women's education, was born in Newcastle upon Tyne on 12 November 1666, the first of two surviving children of Peter Astell (1638–1678), coal merchant, and his wife, Mary, daughter of George Errington, also a coal merchant in ...

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Bernard Bosanquet (1848–1923) by Walter Stoneman, 1917 ? National Portrait Gallery, London

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Bosanquet, Bernard (1848–1923), philosopher and social theorist, was born on 14 June 1848 at Rock Hall, near Alnwick, the youngest of five sons of the Revd Robert William Bosanquet (1800–1880), of Rock, Northumberland, and formerly rector of Bolingbroke, Lincolnshire, son of Charles Bosanquet (1769–1850)...

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Clapperton, Jane Hume (1832–1914), philosopher and social reformer, was born in the parish of St Cuthbert's in Edinburgh to Alexander Clapperton (d. 1849) and Anne Clapperton, née Hume (d. 1872), on 22 September 1832. She was the tenth of twelve children. Her father was a successful merchant, who owned businesses in ...

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Dummett, Sir Michael Anthony Eardley (1925–2011), philosopher and campaigner against racial injustice, was born Michael Eardley Dummett at 56 York Terrace, Marylebone, London on 27 June 1925, the only child of George Herbert Dummett (1880–1970), a silk merchant also later dealing in rayon, and his wife ...

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Sir Michael Anthony Eardley Dummett (1925–2011) by unknown photographer, 1960–1969 ?Studio Edmark, Oxford

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Ginsberg, Morris (1889–1970), sociologist and philosopher, was born in Lithuania on 14 May 1889, the son of Meyer Ginsberg, tobacco manufacturer. He migrated to Britain, where he attracted attention as a talented undergraduate while reading philosophy at University College, London (UCL), which he entered in 1910. Such a migration was common enough at that time but, as ...

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Morris Ginsberg (1889–1970) by Claude Rogers, 1960 ? Estate of Claude Rogers; collection National Portrait Gallery, London

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Hoernlé, (Reinhold Friedrich) Alfred (1880–1943), philosopher and social reformer in South Africa, was born in Bonn, Germany, on 27 November 1880.

His father, (Augustus Frederic) Rudolf Hoernlé (1841–1918), Indologist and philologist, was born in Secundra, Agra, India, on 19 October 1841, the son of ...

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John Stuart Mill (1806–1873) by unknown photographer ? National Portrait Gallery, London

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Mill, John Stuart (1806–1873), philosopher, economist, and advocate of women's rights, was born on 20 May 1806 at 13 Rodney Street, Pentonville, London. He was the eldest of the nine children of the Scottish-born utilitarian philosopher and Benthamite reformer James Mill (1773–1836), and his wife, ...

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Mitrinovi?, Dimitrije (1887–1953), philosopher and social critic, was born into a Serbian Orthodox family at Donje Poplat, a small village near Stolac in Herzegovina, on 21 October 1887, the eldest of ten children. His father, Mihailo Mitrinovi?, was a civil servant in charge of an experimental farm and his mother, ...

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Dimitrije Mitrinovi? (1887–1953) by unknown photographer, 1920s? Dimitrije Mitrinovi? New Atlantis Foundation archive, special collections, University of Bradford

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Spencer, Herbert (1820–1903), philosopher, social theorist, and sociologist, was born at 12 Exeter Road, Derby, on 27 April 1820. He was the eldest son of (William) George Spencer (bap. 1790, d. 1866), the proprietor and headmaster of a small private school, and his wife, ...

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Herbert Spencer (1820–1903) by unknown photographer, c. 1898 ? National Portrait Gallery, London

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Edvard Alexander Westermarck (1862–1939) by M. E., 1913 by courtesy of London School of Economics

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Westermarck, Edvard Alexander [Edward] (1862–1939), anthropologist, sociologist, and philosopher, was born in Helsinki, Finland, on 20 November 1862, the third son and fourth of five children of Constance Gustava Maria Blomqvist (1830–1909) and Nils Christian Westermarck (1826–1904), whose family can be traced to seventeenth-century farmers in ...