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ADLER, Felix (1851-1933)

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ADLER, Felix (1851-1933), German-American educator and reformer, born in Alzey, Germany. In 1857 he went to the U.S., where his father had been called to the rabbinate of Temple Emanu-El in New York City. After graduating from Columbia College, he studied at the universities of Berlin and Heidelberg. On his return to the U.S. he was appointed professor of Hebrew and Oriental literature at Cornell University, a post he held for two years. In 1876 he organized the first Society for Ethical Culture. In 1880 he founded the Workingman's School, which in 1895 became the Ethical Culture School, and in 1928 he founded the Fieldston School. Both schools stress ethics and morality. Well known as a lecturer and writer, Adler also was editor of the International Journal of Ethics. In 1902 Columbia University created the chair of social and political ethics for him, which he held for the rest of his life. He wrote Creed and Deed (1877), Life and Destiny (1905), The Religion of Duty (1912), and An Ethical Philosophy of Life (1918).

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