Joseph Agassi

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Joseph Agassi (born in Jerusalem on May 7, 1927) is an Israeli academic with contributions in logic, scientific method, and philosophy. He studied under Karl Popper and taught at the London School of Economics. He later taught at the University of Hong Kong, the University of Illinois, Boston University, and York University in Canada. He had dual appointments in the last positions with Tel Aviv University.

He has been married to Judith Buber Agassi – Martin Buber's granddaughter – since 1949. Together they had two children, Aaron, and Tirzah, who died of cancer in March 2008. They currently live in Herzlia, Israel. Tirzah, when she was a child, was often used by Popper in his dictum "Write it for Tirzah!" to explain his view that everyone has the duty to write in a clearly and easily understandable language.


Agassi’s prime interest is in science, metaphysics, and politics. He takes it that philosophy is nothing if not rationalist. For over fifty years he studied the rationality of science, metaphysics, and democratic politics.

An advocate of Popper’s philosophy with variations, Agassi ignores many of the problems that concern some philosophers of science, chiefly that of theory choice. The problems of the philosophy of technology engage him, including the problem of choosing scientific theories and ideas worthy of application and implementation.

Political philosophy

Agassi suggests, in line with Popper’s political...
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