Dagobert D. Runes

Dagobert David Runes (January 6, 1902 September 24, 1982) was a philosopher and author.

Dagobert David Runes
Born(1902-01-06)January 6, 1902
DiedSeptember 24, 1982(1982-09-24) (aged 80)
Known forFounder of the Philosophical Library


Born in Zastavna, Bukovina, Austro-Hungary (now in Ukraine), Runes emigrated to the United States in 1926. He had received a doctorate in philosophy from the University of Vienna in 1924. In the U.S. he became editor of The Modern Thinker and later Current Digest. From 1931 to 1934 he was Director of the Institute for Advanced Education in New York City. He had an encyclopedic level fluency in Latin and Biblical Hebrew; he fluently spoke and wrote in Austrian German, German, Yiddish, French, Hebrew, Russian, Polish, Czechoslovakian, and English. In 1941 he founded the Philosophical Library,[1] a spiritual organization and publishing house. Runes was a colleague and friend to Albert Einstein.[2]

Runes published an English translation of Marx's On the Jewish Question under the title A World without Jews. Though this has often been considered the first translation of the work, a Soviet anti-zionist, propaganda version had existed a few years earlier, which was likely unknown to Runes. As the title of Rune's book sounded antisemitic, it had extremely limited circulation in the English-speaking world. Runes wrote an introduction to the translation that was clearly antagonistic to extreme Marxism, and 'its materialism,' as he would later often put it, yet he did not entirely negate Marxism. He also edited several works presenting the ideas and history of philosophy to a general audience, especially his Dictionary of Philosophy.

Selected works

  • Dictionary of Philosophy (editor) Philosophical Library, 1942.
  • The Selected Writings of Benjamin Rush (editor) Philosophical Library, 1947.
  • Jordan Lieder: Frühe Gedichte (in German) The Philosophical Library, 1948.
  • Letters to My Son The Philosophical Library, 1949.
  • The Hebrew Impact on Western Civilization The Philosophical Library, 1951.
  • Spinoza Dictionary The Philosophical Library, 1951.
  • The Soviet Impact on Society: A Recollection, 1953.
  • Letters to My Daughter The Philosophical Library, 1954.
  • Treasury of Philosophy (editor) The Philosophical Library, 1955.
  • Treasury of World Literature (editor) The Philosophical Library, 1956.
  • On the Nature of Man The Philosophical Library, 1956.
  • Pictorial History of Philosophy (editor) The Philosophical Library, 1959.
  • A Dictionary of Thought (editor) Philosophical Library, 1959.
  • A World without Jews (translator) The Philosophical Library, 1959.
  • The Art of Thinking The Philosophical Library, 1961.
  • A Treasury of World Science (editor) The Philosophical Library, 1962.
  • "Despotism: A Pictorial History of Tyranny" (author) The Philosophical Library, 1963 Library of Congress Card catalog #62-22269
  • The Disinterested and the Law The Philosophical Library, 1964.


  1. "Dr. Dagobert Runes, Founder Of the Philosophical Library". New York Times. 27 September 1982. p. D-9. Retrieved 15 December 2011.
  2. Einstein wrote quotes for the covers of many of his works, including one on his book The War Against The Jews front inner flap "His views are the closest to mine... the historical treatment of Jews by Christians is the most egregious example of man's inhumanity to their fellow man..."


  • Ulrich E Bach. “Dagobert D. Runes: Ein streitbarer Verleger in New York.” In: Deutschsprachige Exilliteratur seit 1933 3/I USA Supplement. Ed. John M. Spalek, Konrad Feilchenfeldt and Sandra H. Hawrylchak. Berlin: De Gruyter, 2010: 278-295.
  • Pictorial History of Philosophy by Dagobert D. Runes, 1959.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.