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Sidney Hook
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    (December 20, 1902-July 12, 1989)
    Born in New York, New York
    American philosopher and educator and disciple of John Dewey
    Philosopher of the Pragmatist School
    Bachelors degree from City College of New York in 1923 and a PhD from Columbia in 1927
    Known for his liberal/socialist social views and strong anti-communist stance
    Wrote: The Metaphysics of Pragmatism, (1927) Towards the Understanding of Karl Marx, (1933) Christianity and Marxism, (1934) The Meaning of Marx, (1934) From Hegel to Marx, (1936) Reason, Social Myths, and Democracy, (1940) The Hero in History: A Study in Limitation and Possibility, (1943) Education for Modern Man, (1946) Heresy, Yes; Conspiracy, No, (1953) Marx and the Marxist: The Ambiguous Legacy, (1955) Common Sense and the Fifth Amendment, (1957) Political Power and Personal Freedom, (1959) The Quest for Being, and Other Studies in Naturalism and Humanism, (1961) The Fail-Safe Fallacy, (1962) The Paradox of Freedom, (1963) The Place of Religion in a Free Society, (1968) Academic Freedom and Academic Anarchy, (1970) Pragmatism and the Tragic Sense of Life, (1974) Marxism and Beyond, (1983) Out of Step, (1987) Convictions, (1991) and 2002's Sidney Hook on Pragmatism, Democracy, and Freedom
    Also wrote: John Dewey: An Intellectual Portrait in 1939 and John Dewey: Philosopher of Science and Freedom in 1956 in honor of his old friend, mentor and university professor
    Notable quotes included; 'The right to profess and advocate heresy of any character, including communism, is an essential element of a liberal society' 'To silence criticism is to silence freedom' 'Survival is not the be-all and end-all of a life worthy of man. Those who say life is worth living at any cost have already written for themselves an epitaph of infamy, for there is no cause and no person they will not betray to stay alive' and 'Man's vocation should be the use of the arts of intelligence in behalf of human freedom'
    He supported communism in his youth.
    He smoked.
    He supported socialism throughout his adult life despite the Twentieth Century being one long witness to its failure.
    His writings weren't very accessible (or interesting) to the average reader.
    He described himself as a 'social democrat.'
    He was kind of funny looking, had terrible hair and a strange looking little mustache.
    He was a fierce defender of personal and political liberty.
    After discovering the reality of communism versus its ideals he became strongly anti-communist.
    He was really, really smart.
    In addition to his two dozen books, he wrote hundreds of scholarly articles.
    He was careful to differentiate between Marxism in practice and the person, Karl Marx.
    Rare for a liberal of his times, he supported a strong national defense.
    His anti-communism and dedication to the free expression of ideas was so strong that he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from that most conservative of presidents, Ronald Reagan.
    Although he disliked and disagreed with Bertrand Russell on many subjects he strongly supported his right to teach in the United States.

Credit: tom_jeffords

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