John Petrov Plamenatz

(1912—1975) social and political theorist

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John Petrov Plamenatz was born in Cetinje, the capital of Montenegro, on 16 May 1912 and died at his home near Banbury on 19 February 1975. His father Peter had been Foreign Minister for Montenegro, and his mother was of aristocratic background. Peter Plamenatz was forced to leave Montenegro in 1917, and John was sent to England and educated at Clayesmore School, and at Oriel College, Oxford. Plamenatz took the new school of PPE, but fell ill in 1933, and was awarded an aegrotat degree. He took the history school the next year and obtained a first. In 1936 Plamenatz won election to a research fellowship at All Souls, on the basis of work later published as Consent, Freedom and Political Obligation (1938). When war broke out, he joined an anti-aircraft battery, and he was naturalized in 1941. At the end of the war, he returned to All Souls, and he spent the rest of his life at Oxford. From 1951 to 1967 he was a research fellow at Nuffield College, before returning to All Souls as Chichele Professor of Social and Political Theory, succeeding Isaiah Berlin. He was elected to a fellowship of the British Academy in 1962. Plamenatz died in February 1975, exactly fifty-six years to the day after he landed at Dover.


From The Continuum Encyclopedia of British Philosophy in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Philosophy.

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