Noted educator and Hegelian scholar Henry Harris died March 13 in Victoria, BC, after a short illness. He was 80.
One of York founding president Murray Ross’ early appointments in philosophy at Glendon, Harris retired in 1996 ending a teaching career that spanned 40 years. A prolific author, he was an acknowledged authority on the philosophy of Giovanni Gentile and particularly G.W.F. Hegel.
Born in Britain in 1926, Harris spent a short stint in the British Army before attending Oxford University where he earned a BA and an MA in classics and philosophy. He earned a PhD from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1954 and taught in the United States until 1962, when he was recruited to the Philosophy Department at the fledgling York University. He was the first Chair of York’s Philosophy Department and was academic dean of Glendon College from 1967 to 1969. In 1984 he was named Distinguished Research Professor and in 2001 received an honorary doctorate from York. He was also a member of the York Founders Society. In 1988, he was elected to the Royal Society of Canada.