It’s a mistake to assume that the result of every election is the same—that in a democracy real emotional and psychological terror cannot become an everyday reality directly associated with Presidential power. And while empirical evidence proves that politically-induced emotional and psychological trauma requiring medical treatment is real, a national catastrophe does not have to result in never-ending trauma and grief for those adversely affected.
Prior to his arrival to the US, Einstein was already making clear his stance against anti-Black discrimination, in part by writing a letter of support on behalf of 9 Black teenagers, known as the “Scottsboro Boys,” and once in the US, Einstein became allies with many prominent African Americans, like Marian Anderson and W.E.B DuBois. When Einstein saw injustice he would come to the aid and defense of African-Americans, again and again.
In the final segment of my interview with Tom Alexander, we continue our discussion about John Dewey, who was one of the 20th century’s greatest philosophers and a widely-respected education reformer. Alexander is the author of John Dewey’s Theory of Art, Experience and Nature: The Horizons of Feeling (SUNY Press, 1987), and he’s the author of The Human Eros: Eco-ontology and the Aesthetics of Existence (Fordham University Press, 2013). Since 1985, Alexander has been a member of the Department of Philosophy at Southern Illinois University.
"I believe that the school is primarily a social institution. Education being a social process, the school is simply that form of community life in which all those agencies are concentrated that will be most effective in bringing the child to share in the inherited resources of the race, and to use his own powers for social ends." - John Dewey, My Pedagogic Creed (1897)
Beyond the nightmare of genocide, slavery and the engineered poverty of today, beyond the transgressions of morally bankrupt leaders in the East and the West, beyond the starvation and unmet basic needs allowed to happen around the world, people must, as well, fight for education, architecture and art. Being civil means being willing to do the work necessary to protect a vision of beauty -- to enshrine local, national and global treasures -- to stand up and defend the ability to express oneself creatively. These things make the life water of the soul.
He was a renowned Jewish philosopher, and an early member of the NAACP. He was also an art and nature lover, who advocated a global shift toward vegetarianism. However, Albert Einstein is known primarily as the 20th century’s greatest physicist, although he was a radical socialist who called capitalism evil.
The hefty contributions of Albert Einstein to the US civil rights movement are nothing short of legendary. Even before his arrival in the US from his native Germany, Einstein had already “backed a campaign to defend the Scottsboro Boys, nine Alabama teenagers who were falsely accused of rape in 1931.” And according to a 2015 article at Live Science, when “Princeton's Nassau Inn refused to rent a room to contralto opera star Marian Anderson” because she was Black, “Einstein invited the singer home as his guest.”