Deininger, Whitaker T. (1922-2003)

Deininger, Whitaker T. (1922-2003)

Date Updated



Philosophy and Humanities

Academic Rank


Year Retired from SJSU


Educational Background

Columbia Univ., 1952 Ph.D.

Columbia Univ., 1947 MA

Amherst, 1944 BA

Teaching Experience

San Jose State University, 1955-1983

University of Dubuque and Presbyterian Seminary (Iowa), 1953-1955

Springfield College (Mass.), 1948-1953

City College of New York, 1946-1947

Administrative and Professional Experience

Newspaper reporter.

Selected Publications

Articles include:

"Epistemology and Historical Inquiry" in Journal of Philosophy;

"Skepticism and Historical Faith of Charles A. Beard," in Journal of History of Ideas;

"The Bible and the Social Sciences" in Westminster Pubs;

"Ideological Analysis and Political Power in Il Politico (+UNESCO translations);

"T. D.Weldon as Political Thinker" in Western Pol. Quarterly;

"The New History and American Classrooms" in Journal of Gen. Ed. ..

Books include:

Political and Social Thought: A Philosophical Analysis, MacMillan Co.

Ethics (Tapes);

Philosophical Classics (Chapters on Aristotle, Augustine, Nietsche, James, Mead, Mill, Pascal, etc.).

Contributions to Books include:

"Peril and Promise in Pragmatic Historical Thought" in Phil. as a Civilizing Art.

Personal Commentary

Most of my academic teaching life involved some interdisciplinary work—History of Civilization (Springfield College), Humanities and Tutorials (SJSU) and Philosophy and Christianity (Univ. of Dubuque Seminary). I followed J. H. Randall's advice to become a General Scholar in anage of specialization.

During a year's half-pay sabbatical in England with wife and 4 children (1964-65), I attended a seminar in All Souls College (Oxford) on Legal Thought and Jurisprudence led by Prof. H. L. A. Hart. I also participated in aweekly seminar on Philosophical Analysis at St. Johns College (Cambridge), where I read a brief paper: Wisdom andPhilosophizing. Years later Harriet and I returned to Cambridge (1987) for a week's tribute to Wisdom in TrinityCollege.

My special interests included Ethics, Philosophy of History and Social Philosophy. also taught Philosophy of Religionand Aesthetics occasionally but, sadly, published only book reviews in these subjects.

I loved the "old" SJSU Faculty Club where some met to lunch and converse daily. Older colleagues taught me much there--Tansey, Rendahl, Williams, Robinson, Sawrey, Cresap, Brazil, et al.

I'm proud to have given essay exams only (grading the papers and journals myself) and to have sought participationin class.

Two summers I taught at CSC, Hayward, which got me out of debt following English half-pay sabbatical.

Now I read, chiefly essays and journals like TLS and N.Y. Rev. of Books--good stuff!

Date Completed: 6/96

Adapted from: Biographies of Retired Faculty San Jose State University 1997: A Project of the Emeritus Faculty Association of San Jose State University. San Jose, CA: The University, 1997.


Deininger, Whitaker T. (1922-2003)