John Hospers (June 9, 1918 – June 12, 2011) was an American philosopher, and for many years chairman of the Dept. of Philosophy at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.
Born in Pella, Iowa, Hospers graduated from Central College. Hospers earned advanced degrees from the University of Iowa and Columbia University. He conducted research, wrote, and taught in areas of philosophy, including aesthetics and ethics. He taught philosophy at Brooklyn College, UCLA, and USC.
Hospers was professor emeritus of philosophy at the University of Southern California.
In 2002, an hour-long video about Hospers' life, work, and philosophy was released by the Liberty Fund of Indianapolis, as part of its Classics of Liberty series.
One of the founders of the Libertarian Party, he and running mate Tonie Nathan were the first presidential and VP candidates of the party (1972), and received an historically significant electoral vote.
Hospers' books include: "Meaning and Truth in the Arts" (1946), "Introductory Readings in Aesthetics" (1969), "Artistic Expression" (1971), "Law and the Market" (1985), "Introduction to Philosophical Analysis" (now in the 4th edition, 1996), "Human Conduct" (now in its 3rd edition, 1995), "Understanding the Arts" (1982), and "Libertarianism – A Political Philosophy for Tomorrow" (1971). A 50-year-anniversary edition is in the planning stage.
He was editor of three anthologies, and contributed to books edited by others. He authored about 200 articles in various scholarly and popular journals.
Hospers was editor of The Personalist (1968–1982) and The Monist (1982–1992), and was a senior editor at Liberty magazine.
In order to protect and perpetuate his legacy, Hospers bequeathed his intellectual properties to associates, legally entrusted to reprint and/or reissue his known as well as unpublished works, and, additionally, continue to support the works of others with whom Hospers agreed and/or whom he admired.