The Michigan Alumnus 431
Foundations for careers are seldom laid at so early an age as 13, but with Dr. DEWITT HENRY PARKER, Chairman of the Department of Philosophy, to decide was to act, and at 13 he had decided to study philosophy. He therefore persuaded his mother to move from New Jersey to Boston, the better to prepare for study at Harvard, and today, some 40 years later, is a Professor of Philosophy, head of his department in the University, and the author of no less than five books, the latest of which is just off the press.
By birth, Pro fessor Parker is one of that rare species, the native New Yorker. Born on April 17, 1885, in Amer ica's largest city, he became a resi dent of Summit, New Jersey, when only three, and it was ten years later that he determined to seek out the Boston Latin School as a guarantee of better preparation for the famous university in Cam bridge.
Graduating in 1902 from the Boston institution (where he was a contemporary of I. A. Sharf man, now Chairman of Michigan's Department of Economics), he en tered Harvard, receiving his Bache lor's degree in 1906 and his Ph.D. degree in 1908. The following year he was Instructor at Michigan, and the year after that served in simi lar capacity at the University of California. But in 1910, he re turned to Michigan, and in the years since Instructor (1910-1914), Assistant Professor (1913-1921), Associate Professor (1921-1925), and Professor since 1925. He re turned to California to lecture in 1924-1925, and lectured at the Metropolitan Museum, New York, in January, 1926. In addition, he has served on the summer faculties at Wisconsin (1928), Chicago (1929), and Harvard (1934 and 1935). He was Commencement speaker at Chicago in 1929.
This year, the University Press published his Experi ence and Substance. Previous works by him include The Self and Nature, 1917; The Principles of Aes thetics, 1920; The Analysis of Art, 1926, and Human Values, 1931. A number of articles in philosophical journals are also to his credit. In 1929-1930, Dr. Parker was President of the Western branch of the American Philosophical Association, of which he has long been a mem ber. His chief interest is still the study he began as a boy, although he has broadened his experience and research with five trips abroad, to all the leading art centers of the world except the Hermitage in Leningrad.