John Fiske

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Fiske, John

John Fiske (18421901), born Edmund Fisk Green, was an American philosopher and historian.

His philosophy was influenced by Herbert Spencer, particularly Spencer's views on evolution. Fiske believed in the racial superiority of the "Anglo-Saxon race" as a product of natural selection, pointing to the fact that the English and the Americans had already covered a third of the globe and had spearheaded progress in the form of democracy and capitalism. Fiske was instrumental in the application of Social Darwinism to racism.

Before he became a writer, he practiced law. In books such as Outlines of Cosmic Philosophy (ISBN 0384157807), Fiske aimed to reconcile science and orthodox religious beliefs. Fiske was a popular lecturer on these topics in his early career and later turned to historical writings instead, publishing books such as The Discovery of America (1892, ISBN 1932080422).

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