Herbert Spencer

Herbert Spencer (27 April 1820 – 8 December 1903) was an English philosopher, biologist, sociologist, and prominent classical liberal political theorist of the Victorian era.

Spencer developed an all-embracing conception of evolution as the progressive development of the physical world, biological organisms, the human mind, and human culture and societies. He was "an enthusiastic exponent of evolution" and even "wrote about evolution before Darwin did." As a polymath, he contributed to a wide range of subjects, including ethics, religion, anthropology, economics, political theory, philosophy, biology, sociology, and psychology. During his lifetime he achieved tremendous authority, mainly in English-speaking academia. "The only other English philosopher to have achieved anything like such widespread popularity was Bertrand Russell, and that was in the 20th century." Spencer was "the single most famous European intellectual in the closing decades of the nineteenth century" but his influence declined sharply after 1900; "Who now reads Spencer?" asked Talcott Parsons in 1937.

Spencer is best known for coining the concept "survival of the fittest", which he did in Principles of Biology (1864), after reading Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species. This term strongly suggests natural selection, yet as Spencer extended evolution into realms of sociology and ethics, he also made use of Lamarckism.

Read more about Herbert Spencer:  Life, Synthetic Philosophy, Evolution, Sociology, Ethics, Agnosticism, Political Views, General Influence, Primary Sources, Philosophers' Critiques

Other articles related to "herbert spencer, spencer, herbert":

List Of Liberal Theorists - Mill and Further, The Development of (international) Liberalism - Herbert Spencer
... Herbert Spencer (United Kingdom, 1820–1903), philosopher, psychologist, and sociologist, advanced what he called the "Law of equal liberty" and argued against liberal theory promoting more activist ... For Spencer, voluntary cooperation was the hallmark of the most vibrant form of society, accommodating the widest diversity of members and the greatest diversity of goals ... Spencer's evolutionary approach has been characterized as an extension of Adam Smith's "invisible hand" explanation of economic order his extensive ...
Herbert Spencer (disambiguation)
... Herbert Spencer (1820–1903) was an English philosopher, biologist, and sociologist ... Herbert Spencer may also refer to Herbert Spencer (graphic designer) (1924–2002), British graphic designer Herbert Harvey Spencer (1869–1926), English ... Spencer (1905–1992), American film and television composer and orchestrator Herbert Spencer Elementary School, in New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada ...
Herbert Spencer - Philosophers' Critiques
... Herbert Spencer An Estimate and Review (1904) by Josiah Royce ... Herbert Spencer, and J ... Spencer-smashing at Washington (1894) by Lester F ...
Richard T. Ely - Biography - Political Views
... He was strongly influenced by Herbert Spencer and strongly favored competition over monopoly or state ownership, with regulation to "secure its benefits" and "mitigate its ... Also on social Darwinism, Herbert Spencer believed that the state should not get involved in supporting one ethnic group over another — whereas Richard Ely believed that the state ...
Shyamji Krishna Varma - England
... Verma upon his arrival in London stayed at the Inner Temple and studied Herbert Spencer's writings in his spare time ... He was much inspired by Herbert Spencer,s writings ... At Spencer's funeral in 1903, he announced the donation of £1,000 to establish a lectureship at University of Oxford in tribute to him and his work ...

Famous quotes containing the words spencer and/or herbert:

    The Republican form of government is the highest form of government; but because of this it requires the highest type of human nature—a type nowhere at present existing.
    —Herbert Spencer (1820–1903)

    The six-daies world-transposing in an houre,
    A kinde of tune, which all things heare and fear;
    —George Herbert (1593–1633)