Tom Hodgson

Instructor in Philosophy and
Religious Studies

PA Start Date:
1976 Teaching Fellow
1977 Instructor in Philosophy

I took Proof and Persuasion my Lower Winter to the chagrin of my parents (as I barely survived with my wits about me and a hard-earned 4). When trying to find a class to fulfill my RelPhil requirements, everyone knew that Hodgson’s Proof class was a worthy but challenging (read: grade-sacrificing) class to take—and I really don't exaggerate when I say that the class changes lives. While I may not have been the most participatory student (and I struggled a lot with fallacies and syllogisms), Proof and Persuasion is the one class at Andover that I will never forget. What is the difference between Good and good? That lecture absolutely boggled my mind. I only remember snippets, but after becoming a Classics major in college and first coming upon “eudaimonia,” I wanted nothing more than to return to Lower Winter, and back into that classroom with Mr. Hodgson in the basement of the Chapel and listening to his lectures. When I took Ulysses with Kevin O’Connor my Senior Spring, I found myself scouring for my notes from Proof and Persuasion when faced with S-M-P (and wishing I had paid better attention). Hindsight is 20/20 and my biggest regret is not having taken more of Mr. Hodgson’s classes.”

Joanna Wang ’11

In his own words...

It has been deeply satisfying to develop department offerings in philosophy and religious studies with inspiring colleagues, especially Everett Gendler, Vin Avery, Susan McCaslin, Diane Moore, Mike LeGaspi, and Andy Housiaux. I have countless fond memories of teaching, coaching, and advising generations of talented, ambitious, idealistic young people from increasingly varied backgrounds, alongside admired colleague friends such as Derek Williams, John Gould, Greg Wilkin, Chris Walter, and Alice Purington.

Tom Hodgson

Tom Hodgson

I treasure the friendships, fun, and knowledge gained from morning sessions of Puppy Play Group, school-sponsored educational trips to Belize, China, and South Africa, and a sabbatical year in England with our young family. I have been supported as an amateur musician and athlete, and have been able to take summers to read, hike, and fish at our mountain retreat in the Berkshires, and in mountains and rivers of the Rocky Mountain west.

At the age of 45, I was encouraged to learn to play and coach the wonderful life sport of squash, and through it to explore ways to connect our school community to neighbors in Andover through the Andover Squash Club, in Lawrence through SquashBusters, and to the devoted family of squash lovers around the world. It has been a full life in a creative, supportive community, and I hope to carry parts of it into our next chapter with hybrid courses in applied logic and applied ethics. A theme for the future: “Have Philosophy—and squash racquet, banjo, and fly rod—Will Travel.

Thomas S. Hodgson