Nineteenth Century Philosophy


Who was Henry Sidgwick?

Henry Sidgwick (1838–1900) was not so much an intuitionist as the first modern moral theorist who used a combination of common sense and shared intuitions to assess the competing moral theories of his day. As a professor at Cambridge University, he was active in founding Newnham, the first college for women. His wife, Eleanor Mildred Balfour, whose brother, Arthur, was later Prime Minister of England, became Principal of Newnham in 1892. The Sidgwicks collaborated on many reform and intellectual projects, including investigations into parapsychology. Sidgwick’s principal works are The Methods of Ethics (1874) and Outlines of the History of Ethics (1886).


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