Greatest Philosophers Are All White European Men

Ricardo Duchesne, Council of European Canadians, 12 January 2018

It could be that the most important historical question, the question that points to a monumental contrast between the West and the Rest, is the following: why did Europe produce all the greatest philosophers in history? If we agree that philosophers have been the greatest thinkers, because they have provided the best answers to the most crucial questions about being and becoming, the finite and the infinite, why there is anything rather than nothing, what is good and evil, what is the relation between freedom and necessity, then identifying the ethnicity of the greatest philosophers may be a most revealing factum. One does not have to agree with Aristotle that the “highest good” is the pursuit of Wisdom to take seriously his claim that, if “all men by nature desire to have knowledge,” and if the highest form of knowledge is giving reasons for what is, then it cannot be denied that the civilization that produced the greatest philosophers is the civilization that provided the deepest knowledge about the ultimate questions and thus the civilization that achieved the highest level of cultural expression.

Why A List Of 75?

I say “all the greatest” even though the list of 75 names I have compiled in this article (see below) includes some non-Europeans. They would have been all European if I had compiled a list of 25, which was my initial intention. I thought one or two non-Europeans might make it to this list,…

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