Stephen C. Pepper

Stephen C. Pepper (1891-1972) "was an American pragmatism philosopher, the Mills Professor of Philosophy at the University of California at Berkeley", teaching from 1919 to 1953, says [Wikipedia](

[The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Philosophers in America: From 1600 to the Present]( frames the philosophical focus of Stephen C. Pepper. > Pepper's work is difficult to summarize as he worked in many fields, but he made special contributions to three areas: metaphysics, general value theory, and aethetics. For Pepper, it all begins with metaphysics. He though of metaphysical systems as being somewhat like scientific hypothese, but unlimited in scope. [p. 756]

In philosophical lineages, Stephen C. Pepper and the Pragmatist Tradition is clear, although he seems to have take a critical view.

While [U.C. Berkeley was established in 1868](;NAAN=13030&doc.view=frames&, it wasn't until 1923 that Pepper had a hand in establishing a full arts program. > In 1869 freehand drawing was required for students in the agriculture curriculum, but, until 1923, a designated art department didn’t exist. It took the insight and persistence of two professors, Worth Ryder and Stephen Pepper, to establish a curriculum that balanced studio practice, theory and criticism, and art history, thereby securing the place of art at Berkeley. * Source: ["The Flowering of Arts and Humanities" | Builders of Berkeley | 2021](

A 2018 biography by [Richard L. Lanigan]( gives a more historical perspective. > Pepper was born 29 April 1891, the son of well-known portrait painter Charles Hovey Pepper, and the grandson of a distinguished President of Colby College (Waterville, Maine). Pepper majored in Philosophy and received both an A.B. and a Ph.D. (1916) from Harvard University. After teaching for a year at Wellesley College, Pepper was called to military service during World War I. In 1919, Pepper joined the Department of Philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley. He was heavily influenced by the chair of the department, Jacob Loewenberg, a specialist in aesthetics and Kant. Under their joint leadership in 1930, the department established the Philosophical Union. The Union offered public lectures on “overreaching themes” such as Being, Process, Civilization—all of which Pepper summarized as “world hypotheses” that are used as “root metaphors”, i.e., _basic analogies in experience_ that humans use to judge categories of knowledge _in consciousness_. > Following the publication of his _Aesthetic Quality: A Contextualistic Theory of Beauty_,[3] Pepper was elected Chairman of the Art Department from 1938 to 1952. In 1953, he became Chairman of the Philosophy Department with an endowed chair. During 1935–1936, he served as President of the American Philosophical Association (Pacific Division). His presidential address is a virtual summary of his orientation to Contextualism: “The Quest for Ignorance or the Reasonable Limits of Skepticism.” Pepper died of cancer on 1 May 1972. [p. 375] > > [3] Stephen C. Pepper, _Aesthetic Quality: A Contextualistic Theory of Beauty_ (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1937). * Source: Lanigan, Richard L. 2018. “Stephen Coburn Pepper: Contextualist Ethics in Pragmaticism.” In _An Encyclopedia of Communication Ethics: Goods in Contention_, edited by Ronald C. Arnett, Annette M. Holba, and Susan Mancino. New York, NY: Peter Lang Publishing Inc.