Share / Discuss

Swarthmore Scholars Inducted

The nation’s oldest learned society has added two more Swarthmoreans to its illustrious members’ roster. Founded in 1743 by Benjamin Franklin for the purpose of “promoting useful knowledge,” the American Philosophical Society (APS) elected Linda Gordon ’61 and Thomas Laqueur ’67, H’14 in the social sciences category. Among the other 32 new inductees are former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, choreographer/dancer Twyla Tharp, and economist Thomas Piketty, author of Capital in the 21st Century. 

Gordon, University Professor of the Humanities, Florence Kelley Professor of History at New York University, is a scholar of 20th-century U.S. political and social policy history and prolific author whose Woman’s Body, Woman’s Right: The History of Birth Control in America is considered the definitive history of birth control politics in the United States. Gordon’s writings include a historical study on family violence in the United States, a history of welfare, vigilante action against Mexican-Americans, and history of the Western Hemisphere.  

Laqueur, Helen Fawcett Distinguished Professor of History at the University of California–Berkeley, specializes in the fields of history and sexology. His works include Religion and Respectability: Sunday Schools and Working-Class Culture, 1780–1850.

Gordon and Laqueur join a long list of alumni elected to the APS (see adjacent list). “The APS elects members who are pioneers in their fields, who have advanced the understanding of their areas in extraordinary ways, like Linda Gordon and Thomas Laqueur have done,” says Nora Monroe, director of membership and prizes. “That Swarthmore provides its students with an excellent education, teaching them quality research skills and instilling and nurturing a thirst for knowledge and understanding of our world, makes them natural contenders.”  


Swarthmore elections to APS

David Baltimore ’60, 1997—biological sciences

Leonard Barkan ’65, 2005—humanities

John Cairns Jr. ’47, 1999—biological sciences

Philip Curtin ’48, 1995—humanities

Charles Dempsey ’59, 1998—humanities

Cora Diamond ’57, 2007—humanities

William Frederick Jr. ’48, 1995—the arts, professions, and leaders in public and private affairs

Marjorie Garber ’66, 2012—humanities

Allan Gibbard ’63, 2005—humanities

R. Kent Greenawalt ’58, 1992—social sciences

Geoffrey Hazard Jr. ’53, 2003—the arts, professions, and leaders in public and private affairs

William Hooke ’64, 2006—mathematical and physical sciences

John Hopfield ’54, 1988—mathematical and physical sciences

Peter Katzenstein ’67, 2009—social sciences

H.C. Robbins Landon ’46, 1991—the arts, professions, and leaders in public and private affairs

Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot ’66, 2008—the arts, professions, and leaders in public and private affairs

Robert D. MacPherson ’66, 1999—mathematical and physical sciences

Ellen Ash Peters ’51, 1993—the arts, professions, and leaders in public and private affairs

Robert D. Putnam ’63, 2005—social sciences

Maxine Frank Singer ’52, 1990—biological sciences