American Philosophical Society
Member History

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4. Humanities[X]
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1Name:  Dr. William A. Graham
 Institution:  Harvard University
 Year Elected:  2018
 Class:  4. Humanities
 Residency:  Resident
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1943
   
 
William A. Graham is Murray A. Albertson Professor of Middle Eastern Studies and University Distinguished Service Professor at Harvard University. His scholarship focuses on early Islamic religious history and texts and comparative studies in the history of religion; his most recent work involves Qur'anic studies. Raised in Chapel Hill NC and a 1966 summa graduate of the University of North Carolina in European history and comparative literature (German, French, Classics), he also studied German literature in Göttingen (1964-5). Supported by Woodrow Wilson and Danforth fellowships (1966-73), he earned his PhD at Harvard in the history of religion, specializing in Islamic studies with secondary work in Sanskrit and Indian studies. In 1967-8 he studied Arabic at Britain's Middle East Centre for Arabic Studies in Lebanon and in 1971-2 pursued thesis research in London and Tübingen. A member of Harvard's Faculty of Arts and Sciences (Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations and the Study of Religion) since 1973, he has chaired several academic units, directed the Center for Middle Eastern Studies (1990-6), and served as master of Currier House (1991-2003). In 2002 he also joined the Harvard Divinity School to serve as its dean (2002-12). He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and past chair of the Council on Graduate Studies in Religion. Honors include Phi Beta Kappa; John Simon Guggenheim and Alexander von Humboldt fellowships (India and Germany, 1982-3); the 2000 Excellence in Research in Islamic History and Culture quinquennial award from the Research Centre for Islamic History, Art and Culture (Istanbul); honorary doctorates from UNC-CH (2004) and Lehigh (2006); the 2012 Lifetime Achievement award of The Journal of Law and Religion. His Divine Word and Prophetic Word in Early Islam (1977) shared the ACLS History of Religions Prize in 1978. He is also author of Beyond the Written Word: Oral Aspects of Scripture in the History of Religion (1987) and Islamic and Comparative Religious Studies (2010); a co-author of Three Faiths, One God (2002) and The Heritage of World Civilizations (1986ff.; 10th ed., 2016); an associate editor of The Encyclopaedia of the Qur'an (1995- ); and co-editor of Islamfiche: Readings from Islamic Primary Sources (1983-7). A longtime mountaineer, elected to the American Alpine Club in 1981, he was faculty adviser to the Harvard Mountaineering Club for forty years. He is married to Dr. Barbara S. Graham; they have one son, Dr. Powell L. Graham, M.D.
 
2Name:  Dr. Philip Stuart Kitcher
 Institution:  Columbia University
 Year Elected:  2018
 Class:  4. Humanities
 Residency:  Resident
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1947
   
 
I was born in the UK, where I had the good fortune to pursue my secondary education at Christ’s Hospital, one of Britain’s great charitable foundations. From there I went to Christ’s College, Cambridge, to study mathematics. In my final year, however, I switched to the history and philosophy of science, intending to specialize in the history of science. Reading T.S. Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions inspired a further change, and led me to Princeton and to a Ph.D in the philosophy of science. My early research concentrated on the philosophy of mathematics, and on general issues in philosophy of science, particularly those raised by Kuhn’s work. But, at the very beginning of my teaching career, undergraduates in my class on philosophy of science urged me to discuss biology (a subject about which I had been completely ignorant). Responding to their concerns, I quickly became fascinated. Thanks to a grant from the ACLS, I was able to supplement my reading with a year at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology, where I learned much from Stephen Jay Gould, Richard Lewontin, and Ernst Mayr. During the 1980s, I wrote extensively on topics in the philosophy of biology. My more general work in the philosophy of science culminated in The Advancement of Science, published in 1993. Shortly thereafter, the Library of Congress invited me to spend a year writing a report on the implications of the Human Genome Project. The work I did in this area (much of it published in 1996 in The Lives to Come) changed my views about what philosophers of science ought to be doing. I began to see the sciences as embedded within societies, to whose legitimate aims they are partially responsible. Two books, Science, Truth, and Democracy (2001) and Science in a Democratic Society (2011), have tried to probe the relations between the sciences and the human good. The shift in my thinking was accompanied by a new concentration on ethics, and an attempt to understand how ethical life might fit within an evolutionary picture of our species. Here I was greatly aided by conversations with Sidney Morgenbesser, who helped me to see the kinship between my views and those of John Dewey. Dewey’s pragmatism has left deep imprints in my more recent writings, not only in The Ethical Project (2011) and Preludes to Pragmatism (2012), but also in my discussions of religion (Living with Darwin, 2007, and Life After Faith, 2014). Since coming to Columbia in 1999, the wonderful interdisciplinary intellectual environment has quickened my long-standing interests in music and literature, leading me to write on Wagner, Mahler, Joyce, and Thomas Mann. I’m currently engaged in several attempts to elaborate a Deweyan pragmatism for our century, by supplying a general framework and focusing on education, democracy, and moral progress. I hope to have enough time not only to complete these projects, but also for further philosophical explorations of literary and musical works. I trust my long - and winding - intellectual journey is not yet finished. With luck, there will be a few more bends and surprises. - Philip Kitcher Philip Kitcher was elected a member of the American Philosophical Society in 2018. He has also earned many other honors, including the Lifetime Achievement Award of the American Psychological Association and the Prometheus prize of the American Philosophical Association. In 2020 he was awarded the Rescher Medal for contributions to systematic philosophy. In 2021 he was awarded the 2020 2020 Hempel Award, "recognizing outstanding lifetime achievement in the philosophy of science" and published two books, Moral Progress (June) and The Main Enterprise of the World: Rethinking Education (November).
 
3Name:  Dr. Paul W. Kroll
 Institution:  University of Colorado, Boulder
 Year Elected:  2018
 Class:  4. Humanities
 Residency:  Resident
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1948
   
 
One of the world's leading scholars of medieval Chinese (ca. 200-1000 CE) literature, Paul W. Kroll took his Ph.D. at the University of Michigan in 1976. After three years at the University of Virginia, he moved to the University of Colorado where he became the founding Chair of the university's Department of Oriental Languages and Literatures (now Asian Languages and Civilizations), serving in that position from 1982 to 1995. During that time he also designed and instituted the department's graduate program in Chinese. He is the author of over seventy articles, as well as the author or editor of eight books, the most significant of which is A Student's Dictionary of Classical and Medieval Chinese (Brill, 2014; revised edition 2017). This is the first Chinese-English dictionary devoted specifically to the premodern Chinese written language, up to roughly 1000 CE. It has become a standard and indispensable resource for students and scholars alike. Among its special features are the inclusion of the Middle Chinese reconstructed pronunciation of every word, definitions of a multitude of technical terms in various fields (bureaucracy, astronomy, sericulture, Buddhism and Daoism, etc.), accurate identifications of hundreds of plants and animals, and explanations of hundreds of Gestalt binomes (Ch. lianmianci) which figure prominently in literary texts, especially in poetry. His scholarly publications have mainly focused on facets of the literature, religion, and cultural history of the Nanbeichao (early medieval) and Tang (late medieval) eras, with a special fondness for the poets of the seventh and eighth centuries. Broadly learned in Western literatures and languages from classical times through the modern period, in addition to East Asian traditions, his sinological studies have an unusual depth of comparative reference. Besides his own research, he has spent forty years as an editor of various scholarly journals, helping to define the field and shape the presentation of Western studies on premodern China, including as: associate editor of the Journal of Chinese Religions (1979-1982); editor of Tang Studies (1984-2006), which he transformed from a simple newsletter into the leading specialist journal on Tang China; East Asia editor of the venerable Journal of the American Oriental Society (1984-2000) and then Editor-in-Chief of that journal and of the society's monograph series (2000-2010), during which he also presided over a complete redesign of the journal; one of three co-editors of T'oung Pao (2009-17), the oldest and leading European journal of sinology, for which he was the first American-born editor in its 100-plus-year history; and since 2015 one of four editors of Brill's Handbuch der Orientalistik series. Among other activities he is the American Oriental Society's delegate to the American Council of Learned Societies and the ACLS's delegate to the Union Académique Internationale. Selected honors include: three fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies (1979-80, 1985-86, 1996, the latter partially funded by the Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation); President of the American Oriental Society (2006-07); Guggenheim Fellowship (2007-08); member of the Institute for Advanced Study, School of Historical Studies (2008-09, partially funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities); named to the Dayatang Chaired Professorship for one semester at Peking University (2016, to be assumed at a later date.)
 
4Name:  Dr. Jakob Lothe
 Institution:  University of Oslo
 Year Elected:  2018
 Class:  4. Humanities
 Residency:  International
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1950
   
 
Jakob Lothe is professor of English literature at the University of Oslo. Combined with this position, he has also been an adjunct professor at the University of Bergen. He has been an invited visiting scholar at St. John’s College, University of Oxford (1996-1997), Harvard University (2005), University of Cape Town (2010), and Regent’s Park College, University of Oxford (2017-2018). Lothe’s main research interest is narrative theory and analysis. He has developed an original method that combines constituent elements of classical narratology, rhetorical narrative theory, narrative hermeneutics, memory studies, and studies of the narrative ethics of fiction and film. In his current work, Lothe aims to improve our understanding of the ethics of storytelling, while at the same time highlighting the key role of the ethics which readers and viewers take with them to the act, and experience, of reading and viewing. His books include Conrad’s Narrative Method (Oxford UP, 1989), Narrative in Fiction and Film (Oxford UP, 2000), and, as editor or co-editor, Joseph Conrad (Ohio State UP, 2008), Franz Kafka (Ohio State UP, 2011), After Testimony: The Ethics and Aesthetics of Holocaust Narrative for the Future (Ohio State UP, 2012), Narrative Ethics (Rodopi, 2013), Time’s Witnesses: Women’s Voices from the Holocaust (Fledgling Press, 2017), and The Future of Literary Studies (Novus Press, 2017). Lothe is a member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters and the leader of the Academy’s committee on human rights. The committee works for the release of researchers who have been imprisoned in violation of their human rights and to prevent torture and use of the death penalty.
 
5Name:  Dr. Avishai Margalit
 Institution:  Hebrew University of Jerusalem
 Year Elected:  2018
 Class:  4. Humanities
 Residency:  International
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1939
   
 
Avishai Margalit is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He has done important philosophical work on language, rationality, politics, and morality. Though he uses analytical methods, he is notable within analytic philosophy for drawing on the complexity of historical examples and cultural context. One of his most significant contributions is his argument that politics focuses on avoiding evil rather than pursuing the good, and thus that the goal of a decent society that is free of humiliation is prior to the goal of the just society. In addition to his academic work, Avishai Margalit is a public representative of philosophy. He has been a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books since 1984. He has at various times been involved in work towards and promotion of peace in Israel and Palestine. Avishai Margalit was elected a member of the American Philosophical Society in 2018.
 
6Name:  Dr. Susan Neiman
 Institution:  Einstein Forum
 Year Elected:  2018
 Class:  4. Humanities
 Residency:  Resident
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1955
   
 
Susan Neiman has been Director of the Einstein Forum since 2000. She works primarily in moral and political philosophy as well as in the history of philosophy, particularly the 18th century. Much of her work has been devoted to defending the Enlightenment against its caricatures. Her books have been translated into ten languages. They include Slow Fire: Jewish Notes from Berlin, The Unity of Reason: Rereading Kant, Evil in Modern Thought: An Alternative History of Philosophy, Fremde Sehen Anders, Moral Clarity: A Guide for Grownup Idealists, Why Grow Up?, and Widerstand der Vernunft. She is also the author of many essays, and regularly writes political and cultural commentary for German and American media. Recent awards include the International Spinoza Prize and the Tanner Lectureship at the University of Michigan. In 2019 she received the Volkmar and Margret Sander Prize from Deutsches Haus NYU. She is a member of the Berlin-Brandenburg Akademie der Wissenschaften. Previously, she taught philosophy at Yale University and Tel Aviv University. She received her A.B., M.A., and Ph.D. from Harvard University, where she studied under John Rawls and Stanley Cavell, before studying at the Freie Universität-Berlin under Margherita von Brentano and Jakob Taubes. Neiman is the mother of three grown children, and lives in Berlin.
 
7Name:  Dr. Thomas M. Scanlon
 Institution:  Harvard University
 Year Elected:  2018
 Class:  4. Humanities
 Residency:  Resident
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1940
   
 
Thomas M. Scanlon, Jr., generally known as Tim Scanlon, is Alford Professor of Natural Religion, Moral Philosophy, and Civil Polity, emeritus, at Harvard University. He received his B.A. from Princeton in 1962, and after a year at Oxford did his graduate work at Harvard, receiving his PhD in philosophy in 1968. He taught at Princeton from 1966 until moving to Harvard in 1984. Scanlon has written widely on topics in moral and political philosophy, including practical reason, the nature of moral right and wrong, value, well being, responsibility and blame, the obligation to keep a promise, freedom of expression, tolerance, and the basis of equality. He is best know for his defense of a contractualist theory of right and wrong, for an approach to morality and practical reasoning that takes the idea of a reason as the basic notion; and for his defense of the view that claims about reasons for action are capable of truth and falsity. In addition to many articles, he has written five books: What We Owe to Each Other; The Difficulty of Tolerance; Moral Dimensions: Permissibility, Meaning, Blame; Being Realistic about Reasons; and, most recently, Why Does Inequality Matter?
 
Election Year
2018[X]