Feb. 7, 1940 - July 20, 2014
PORTLAND -- Joseph Grange was born and raised in the South Bronx of New York City. He received his Ph.D. from Fordham University in 1970 and began teaching at the University of Southern Maine the same year. He retired in 2009. His Dissertation was Tragic Value in the Thought of Alfred North Whitehead. He held academic appointments at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, the National University of Ireland, the University of Hawaii, the Maine School of Art and other distinguished institutions of philosophical research and learning.
He lectured at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, and through Claremont's China Project traveled though China lecturing at various centers of learning. One of the most important appointments in his life was three years that he spent at the University of Hawaii where he studied Classical Chinese Philosophy under the tutelage of C. Y. Cheng and Roger Ames. He also directed the Doctoral Dissertation of Dr. Linyu Gu on Zen, Yi Philosophy and Process thought.
His philosophical interests turned toward comparisons of Western Philosophy and Chinese Culture. He published a significant number of articles and reviews in Philosophy East and West and The Journal of Chinese Philosophy. At Hawaii he gave Doctoral Seminars on Heidegger and Dewey that, he was told by the Chair, revolutionized the Department's approach to its curriculum. He served on the Editorial Board of The Journal of Chinese Philosophy and he was a reviewer of books and articles for Philosophy East and West. He edited a special issue of The Journal of Chinese Philosophy on Tao and God.
In 2008 he was elected President of the Metaphysical Society of America and for 10 years was the Director of the Society for the Study of Process Philosophies. He authored several books including Nature: An Environmental Cosmology; Metaphysics and Culture; The City: An Urban Cosmology; and Soul: A Spiritual Cosmology. He served as Emeritus Philosophy at the University of Southern Maine and he delivered the Keynote Address at the International Conferences of the Association of Yijing Philosophy. He presented the Foundational Lecture at the Inaugural Meeting in June at Shanghai on the 'Contributions of Chinese Philosophy to World Philosophy.'
In 2011, he presented a semester of lectures on the history of Western Philosophy at Xi'an University in China. He held a Professorship at the Beijing University of Architecture and Civil Engineering. His lectures derived from a life of reflection on Plato's theory of 'the good' as the ground of being and source of knowledge.
He is survived by his loving wife, Claudine Wilhelmi Grange; step-daughters, Anya and Robin; and three siblings, Mary Ann, Owen, and Malachy.
The memorial service will be held on Aug. 1, at 10 a.m., at Unitarian Universalist Church, Congress Street, Portland.
Memorial donation may be made to:
38 Preble St.
Portland, Maine 04101
Published in Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram on July 27, 2014