Jane Addams (1860 – 1935) was a pioneer social worker, feminist, and an internationalist in America.
In 1889 she and Miss Starr leased a large home. By 1991, Hull-House hosted up to two thousand people every week.
“As the leader of the social settlement, Hull House in Chicago, Addams scheduled numerous evening social gatherings not simply for amusement but because she thought it was imperative for people of different ethnicities, classes, and generations to have exposure and thus develop a better understanding of one another. In turn, this understanding across differences leads to a responsibility to act on behalf of others.” (Hamington, ECC, 2019)
“Jane Addams was an intellectual and activist during the Progressive Era in the United States who advocated for a high level of social responsibility among citizens in a democracy. For Addams, democratic social responsibility went beyond the minimal requirements of participation in voting and serving on juries. Addams advocated for lifelong social learning and interpersonal engagement across intersectional differences as the standard for a robust society. In her view, modernity is marked by a need for a social ethic over the historic emphasis on personal morality.” (Hamington, ECC, 2019)
We have further ECC articles on Jane Addams:
Our research fellow Núria Sara Miras Boronat published 2022 the book Women in Pragmatism: Past, Present and Future in our Springer Book Series: Women in the History of Philosophy and Sciences. Recently the book has been listed in the 8 Best New Pragmatism Books To Read In 2023 by thought leaders and experts. Find fellow researchers of Jane Addams here.
For our New Voices Conference, 25-26 February 2022, Thijs Heijmeskamp gave a talk on ‘Jane Addams and Empathy as a Method for Democracy’. You can watch his talk here:
Hamington, Maurice (2019). Social responsibility of individuals in Jane Addams (1860-1935). In: ECC, Encyclopedia of concise concepts by women philosophers, 1 Online-Ressource (2 pages). DOI: 10.17619/UNIPB/1-548