John Forrester was born on August 25, 1949, and died on November 24, 2015.
He was a historian and philosopher of science and medicine.
John main interests were in the history of the human sciences, in particular psychoanalysis and psychiatry.
Born and raised in London, John attended Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys’ School from 1960 to 1966 and read Natural Sciences at King’s College, Cambridge (1967–1970), graduating with a First in Part II History and Philosophy of Science.
In Cambridge, John was taught by Gerd Buchdahl, Mary Hesse and Robert M. Young.
In 1970-1972, as a graduate student in the History of Science Program at Princeton University, he took courses with Thomas Kuhn, Gerald Geison, Theodore M. Brown and Charles Coulston Gillispie.
In 1972, John spent six months teaching science in London secondary schools and in 1973-1974 worked for the Science Policy Foundation.
From 1973-1976 he was a graduate student at King’s College, Cambridge, a Junior Research Fellow in the College (1976–1980) and a Senior Research Fellow (1980–1984); during this time he researched in Vienna (1975) and while in Paris (1977-1978), attached to the École Normale Supérieure, was much influenced by the lectures of Michel Foucault at the Collège de France.
In 1984, he was appointed to a University Lectureship in History and Philosophy of Science at Cambridge, was promoted to Reader in 1996 and to Professor in 2000.
John was Head of Department from 2007-2013.
He was Visiting Professor at the Institute of Logic and the Epistemology of the Human Sciences, University of Campinas, Brazil (1988); Visiting Professor at the Institut für Wissenschafts- und Technikforschung, University of Bielefeld in Germany (1997); Research Scholar, Getty Research Institute in the History of Art and the Humanities, Santa Monica, California (1998); Whitney J. Oates Fellow of the Council of the Humanities and the Program in the History of Science, Princeton University (2001); Schaffner Visiting Professor, Franke Institute for the Humanities, University of Chicago (2003); Professor, Ittingen Summer School, Kartaus Ittingen, Switzerland (2004); Visiting Directeur d’Études, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris (2006).
John taught at the School of Criticism and Theory when it was located at Dartmouth College (1995).
John Forrester passed away at age 66 in November 2015.