Dialogues of Alfred North Whitehead

Philosopher and man of science, Whitehead is the man who went farthest on the road we all must travel. Here, recorded as conversations in his own home and clearly modeled on Eckermann’s dialogues with Goethe, are some of the landmarks, signposts, milestones and noble scenery of that journey, and they are presented there in a volume The Washington Post called “as readable as it is provocative.”

Whitehead’s mind is a compass for the modern world. In these pages the immense reaches of his thought—in philosophy, religion, science, statesmanship, education, literature, art and conduct of life—are gathered and edited by critic and writer Lucien Price. Time, the present; scene, the Cambridge of Harvard (with flashbacks to London, Cambridge, England, and his native Ramsgate in Kent); cast, undergraduates along with men and women, often eminent, who join in his penetrating, audacious, and exhilarating verbal forays. The subjects discussed range from the homeliest details of modern living to the greatest ideas that have animated the mind of man over the past thirty centuries. A noble mind is here exposed.

Alfred North Whitehead was trained at Cambridge University in mathematics, but he is better known today as the forefather of process philosophy, which regards reality as consisting of processes rather than of material objects. He wrote what is considered the foundational text of process philosophy, Process and Reality, while serving as a professor of philosophy at Harvard University. Whitehead remained in Cambridge, Massachusetts until his death in 1947.

Junius Lucien Price was born in Brimfield, Ohio to a “New England transplantee” family who had long lived in Brimfield, Massachusetts. After graduating from Ohio’s prestigious Western Reserve Academy, Price moved to Boston, where he attended Harvard University and later wrote for the Boston Evening Transcript and the Boston Globe. He wrote numerous books about education and his early life, some of which appeared under the pseudonym “Seymour Deming.” His extensive papers are currently held at Harvard University.