Ruth Nanda Anshen
Ruth Nanda Anshen created connections between the great thinkers of different fields, offering them opportunities to explain their work to each other and the general public. While studying for her PhD under the philosopher Alfred North Whitehead at Boston University in the late 1930s, Anshen was distressed to realize how the masters of various disciplines such as physicist Albert Einstein and geneticist J.B.S. Haldane seemed unaware of each other’s work and how it might affect their own. She began editing the Science of Culture series in 1940, which for two decades brought together essays by luminaries as varied as Albert Einstein, Margaret Mead, Jonas Salk, and Thomas Mann, in hopes of creating a unified theory to explain the workings of the universe though a cross-pollinating, multidisciplinary approach. She also edited the Perspectives in Humanism, Religious Perspective, and World Perspective series, as well as a thirty-volume collection of intellectual autobiographies called Credo Perspectives, all with the intention of creating cross-disciplinary solutions to the world’s problems. The World Perspective series included The Art of Loving by Erich Fromm and Letters from the Field by Margaret Mead, both considered vital texts in their fields.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "Ruth Nanda Anshen." (Viewed on September 18, 2014) <http://jwa.org/people/anshen-ruth>.