Herbert, Gary B. 1941–

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HERBERT, Gary B. 1941–

PERSONAL: Born December 24, 1941, in Rockford, IL; son of Charles Franklin and Ruth Adele (Bogda) Herbert; married Jane Elizabeth Provancher (a teacher), August 19, 1967; children: Gregory Scott, Steven Mark. Ethnicity: "English." Education: Illinois Wesleyan University, B.A., 1965; American University, M.A., 1967; Pennsylvania State University, Ph.D., 1972. Religion: Protestant.

ADDRESSES: Home—2105 Hullen St., Metairie, LA 70001. Office—Department of Philosophy, Campus Box 138, Loyola University, New Orleans, LA 70118.

CAREER: Loyola University, New Orleans, LA, assistant professor, 1972–76, associate professor, 1976–89, professor of philosophy, 1989–.

MEMBER: American Philosophical Association (Eastern division), American Catholic Philosophical Association, American Society for Political and Legal Philosophy.

AWARDS, HONORS: Dux Academixus, Loyola University, 2001.


Thomas Hobbes: The Unity of Scientific and Political Wisdom, University of British Columbia Press (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada), 1989.

A Philosophical History of Rights, Transaction Publishers (Piscataway, NJ), 2002.

Editor, Human Rights Review, 2003–.

WORK IN PROGRESS: A book on the philosophy of Immanuel Kant.

SIDELIGHTS: Gary B. Herbert told CA: "I spent my formative years in graduate studies at Pennsylvania State under the tutelage of Stanley Rosen and Richard Kennington. They had both been students of Leo Strauss, and it showed in their painstakingly careful analyses of texts and brilliant synoptic grasp of the philosophical history of ideas. Together, they gave my interest in classical political philosophy its direction.

"Their own teacher, Leo Strauss, authored one of the classic interpretations of the seventeenth-century political philosopher, Thomas Hobbes. There were indications in Strauss's later writings that he had changed his mind about his interpretation of Hobbes, believing that a greater emphasis on the role of Hobbes's natural philosophy was more important to Hobbes's political theory than Strauss had originally thought. Strauss promised a future work, to be written with Alexandre Kojéve, that would show how Hobbes 'opens up the way to Hegel.' No such work was ever written.

"While I do not consider my book, Thomas Hobbes: The Unity of Scientific and Political Wisdom, to be a fulfillment of Strauss's promise, my work and A Philosophical History of Rights certainly do owe a debt to the later insights of Strauss.

"My work on Hobbes, focused as it was on understanding Hobbes's political theory of natural right, led me eventually to turn to the broader philosophical history of the concept, resulting in a ten-year study of the revolutionary development of the concept of rights. That research culminated in my 2002 book.

"Since then I have followed the course of philosophical history itself, going from a study of the concept of natural right to a study of the historical and philosophical origins and development of the contemporary concept of human rights. As part of that development in my philosophical interests, I accepted an offer to become editor of Human Rights Review.

"In the book I am now working on, I am undertaking a reexamination of the philosophy of the eighteenth-century philosopher Immanuel Kant. The goal of the book will be to reveal an original understanding of the concept of human rights that is not so susceptible to being criticized for being an ideological tool of western bourgeois individualism and, hence, a concept that can be embraced by ethnically diverse communities and that can fulfill the promise it originally held for the international community."

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Herbert, Gary B. 1941–

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