Murray, John Clark
John Clark Murray, philosopher (b at Thread and Tannahill, Scot 19 Mar 1836; d at Montréal 20 Nov 1917). Murray's career as a philosopher began in 1862 at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. Ten years later he accepted a position as professor of logic at McGill and remained there until he retired in 1903. His commitment to the PHILOSOPHY of Sir William Hamilton shifted radically after a time in Canada, and his Hegelian inclinations resulted in 2 works on philosophical psychology: A Handbook of Psychology (1885) and Introduction to Psychology (1904). All things exhibited a rational unity for Murray and reason was the crucial factor in his theory of human nature. In 1887 he wrote a manuscript, unpublished until 1982, entitled The Industrial Kingdom of God, which made a plea for social and economic reform and proposed a co-operative society based on Christian principles of freedom, equality and justice for all people.
Murray was scholarly, but not a recluse. He fought a long battle for women's political and educational rights. His public lectures, newspaper articles and contributions to popular journals made him widely known. Murray's Scottish determination and sense of public duty had an impact, not only on his students, among whom were author and poet William D. Lighthall and Stephen LEACOCK, but also on the developing Canadian culture. His books A Handbook of Christian Ethics (1908) and An Introduction to Ethics (1891) and his social-gospel novel He That Had Received the Five Talents (1904) spell out his moral theory. He was a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and a Canadian philosopher who truly practised what he preached.