R. B. Braithwaite

R. B. Braithwaite

R. B. Braithwaite

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Richard Bevan Braithwaite (15 January 1900–21 April 1990) was an English philosopher who specialized in the philosophy of science, ethics, and the philosophy of religion. He was a lecturer in moral science at the University of Cambridge from 1934 to 1953, then Knightbridge Professor of Moral Philosophy there from 1953 to 1967. He was president of the Aristotelian Society from 1946 to 1947, and was elected a fellow of the British Academy in 1957.


Braithwaite was born in Banbury, Oxfordshire, and studied physics and mathematics at Cambridge.

He was married (secondly) to the computational linguist and philosopher Margaret Masterman with whom he founded the Epiphany Philosophers a group of (largely) Anglicans and Quakers seeking a new view of the relationship between philosophy and science (see the Pardshaw Dialogues, below).


Although he was positivistically inclined, Braithwaite was a Christian, having been brought up a Quaker and becoming an Anglican later. According to theologian Alister E. McGrath Braithwaite's 1955 Eddington Memorial Lecture "An Empiricist's View of the Nature of Religious Belief"Braithwaite, Richard. in Basil Mitchell (ed.). The Philosophy of Religion. Oxford University Press, 1970, pp. 72–91. is to date the most widely cited publication (e.g. by Anglican priest Don Cupitt) from a genre of 1970's-1980's theological works arguing that "God" and "religion" are human...
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