Philosophy in Australia



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Philosophy in Australia


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	Philosophy in Australia

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Philosophy in Australia

Australian academic philosophy has made an international impact disproportionate to the country's small population, though its beginnings contain little that might have suggested such influence. The first Philosophy Chair was established at the University of Melbourne in 1886 and its occupant Henry Laurie was more notable for extravagant shyness than public impact or academic achievement. Until the 1920s, the dominant philosophical outlook was idealism. After the arrival from Glasgow of the charismatic John Anderson to the Chair in Sydney in 1927, this outlook was challenged by his vigorous, distinctive, highly metaphysical and somewhat dogmatic version of realism. Anderson had little international recognition during his working life, but he had a powerful effect upon Australian cultural life and upon students who themselves achieved a significant international presence. Thinkers like David Armstrong, John Mackie and John Passmore diverged in many ways from Andersonianism but the indelible mark of the Sydney baptism remained with them even when they had accommodated to the international profile.

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Philosophy in Australia

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