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Herman Harrell Horne

By Dennis D. Fledderjohann & Francis Burgula


Herman Harrell Horne (1874-1946), an American philosopher and educator, was a leading spokesman for philosophical idealism in educational theory and practice during the first half of the twentieth century. Although he did not profess to write theological works, he advocated a spiritual and religious approach to education. He was a serious educator and a thoughtful Christian; as such, he deserves careful consideration.


Marriage, Education and Forty-Three Years of Teaching

Herman Harrell Horne was born on November 22, 1874, to Hardee (a farmer by trade) and Ida Caroline (Harrell) Horne in Clayton, North Carolina. On August 20, 1901, he married Alice Elizabeth Herbert Worthington, and they had four children before her death on April 4, 1934: Julia Carolyn, Betsy Worthington, William Henry, and Ida Battle. Horne was remarried on April 9, 1944, to Mrs. Mary Dowell W. Williamson.

His early education included the local public school and Davis Military Academy in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Horne received the Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees from the University of North Carolina in 1895 and 1897. He studied under William James at Harvard, where Horne shifted his major interest from literature to philosophy and he received the Doctor of Philosophy degree in 1899. His thesis, “History and Philosophy of the problem of sin,” set the stage for a successful and illustrious career in teaching and writing. By 1906 his first two major books (The philosophy of education and Psychological principles of education) were published by the Macmillan Company of New York. The academic year 1906-1907 was spent in postgraduate study at the university of Berlin. The first decade of the century was extremely fruitful for Horne, as he contributed articles to journals such as ‘School Review’, Biblical World, and Education. Before his death, he received four honorary degrees: Wake Forest College, North Carolina in 1924; Muhlenberg College, Allentown, Pennsylvania in 1927; University of North Carolina in 1934; and New York University in 1943. Some of the many educational organizations of which he was a member include the American Philosophical Association, the Religious Education Association, the American Academy of Political and Social Sciences, the Society of College Teachers of Education, Phi Beta Kappa, and Phi Delta Kappa. He was a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Society for the Advancement of Education.

Horne’s teaching career spanned forty-three years in three universities. His first teaching assignment came as an instructor in French and modern languages at the University of North Carolina from 1894-1896. When he was only twenty-six, he was appointed to Dartmouth College as an instructor of philosophy from 1899-1900. He rose to the rank of assistant professor of philosophy and pedagogy from 1900-1905. In 1905-1909 he continued to teach there having quickly achieved the rank of full professor. He spent a year’s leave studying in Berlin before moving to New York. In 1910 he became professor of philosophy at the school of pedagogy at New York University. In 1922 the school of pedagogy was renamed the school of education. Horne served there as professor and chairman of the Departments of Educational Philosophy and the History of Education for thirty-three years, until his retirement in 1942. He also helped to establish the Department of Religious Education. On September 1, 1942, he became professor emeritus at New York University.

In addition to his regular academic posts, he also lectured at numerous leading colleges, universities, and seminaries. Some of those opportunities include the following: Harvard Summer School of Theology in 1903 and 1907; Martha’s Vineyard Summer Institute in 1902-1904; University of North Carolina in 1903; Columbia University summer session in 1905; University of California summer session in 1909; New York University during the summers of 1911-1913 and from 1922; Summer School of the South in Knoxville, Tennessee, in 1914; Auburn University summer school from 1915 through 1917; Southern College of YMCA during the summers of 1920-1921; Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1923; Carew Lecturer at the Hartford Theological Foundation in 1935; James Sprunt Lecturer at Union Theological Seminary in 1937; and the McDowell Lecturer at Ohio Wesleyan University in 1943 (Who Was Who in America, 1950, p. 262).

Herman Horne was one of America’s most outstanding educational thinkers in his day. As a scholar, a philosopher, a gentleman, and a Christian, perhaps he was best known for his vigorous opposition to John Dewey and progressive education. While Dewey was one of the leading proponents of Instrumentalism, Horne was a leading representative of the Idealistic philosophy of education, a school of thought that dominated American philosophy from the mid-nineteenth century well into the twentieth century. Although idealism fell from favor in more recent times, it exercised a decided influence on American schools and the theory of education, and it continues to have moderate influence in religious education. Basically, idealism, as articulated by Horne, “holds to the centrality of the freedom of will, but it also recognizes that the individual is not an isolated entity; rather, the individual is a part of a larger whole” (Grimke & Howells, 1998, p. 503).

He was a philosopher and a layman, not a theologian. Though it is a mistake to consider Dr. Horne merely as an opponent of Dewey, he was a great Christian educator in his own right and wrote extensively in this area. According to one of his students, “He was openly hostile to Dewey and dedicated to Christ” (Rood, 1970, p. 233). Horne was neither “acrimonious” nor evangelistic. “Freedom of thought and speech characterized the nature of his classes” (p. 233). His method of teaching was Socratic, except that “he gave out written questions beforehand” (p. 233). He taught by interrogation, “strolling around the classroom,” leading students to their own conclusions which were in turn evaluated by the whole class. He was by all accounts, “a born teacher” (p. 233). Unlike many of the religious educators of his day, however, he resisted the tendency to substitute “the psychological wisdom of man for the operation of the Holy Spirit in moving upon the hearts of men” (Horne, 1937, p. 17).

Not only was Dr. Horne an idealist educational philosopher, he was also a prolific writer in the fields of educational philosophy, psychology, pedagogy, and religious education. His philosophy stemmed from a firm belief in the immortality of the soul and the ideal of Jesus as the incarnation of a model toward which each person should strive. In addition, he authored many academic books, several of which were used as college textbooks in philosophy. Some of his works were more popular than others were. In fact, as of 1946, The Democratic Philosophy of Education had sold over 30,000 copies and was translated into several languages. This book is a critique of Democracy and education, written by John Dewey.

As a firm believer in the future of radio since its infancy, in 1923 Horne participated in the initial classroom experiment of the New York University School of the Air. He delivered a classroom lecture on the radio—the first professor in the United States to conduct such a feat. He predicted that the time would come when students would be able to see and hear their professors even though they were in other places.

Horne recognized five great ideals that touched him personally and that came from varied experiences throughout the stages of his life. These “life stages,” also referred to as "ideals," were his intellectual lineage. “They stand behind me as influences and before me as challenges” (Horne, 1937, p. 13). (a) The ideal of Christianity was one that he received from his mother. (b) The ideal of the Southern gentleman was learned in the honor system as an undergraduate at the University of North Carolina. (c) He discovered the ideal of the scholar while he was a student of James, Royce, and Hocking at Harvard. “James, Royce, Palmer, Munsterberg, Santayana were all teachers of mine. Royce, especially, wanted independence in viewpoint. He did not care to found a school of thinkers; he only wanted to make scholars. This ideal of scholarship was furthered by residence and study abroad” (p. 14). (d). The ideal of manhood came from the students at Dartmouth—“capable, self-reliant, efficient. The great college president there, William J. Tucker, insisted on the spiritual quality of true manhood” (p. 14). (e) The ideal of cosmopolitanism dawned on him while he was at New York University. “One lives, thinks, feels and acts in the midst of world-wide relationships. Provincialism doesn’t work” (p. 14). Less discussed, but also important to him, were his seven cardinal points of “The Star of Life”—health, knowledge, art, character, vocation, righteousness, and worship (“Hear Educator as Graduates Get Diplomas”).

Herman Harrell Horne was a Baptist in his early years, but in his later years his affiliation was with the Presbyterian church. Politically he was a Democrat and enjoyed many kinds of outdoor activities like swimming, fishing, tennis and golf. Horne died of a heart ailment in his home at 341 Summit Avenue, Leonia, New Jersey, at noon on August 16, 1946, at the age of seventy-one. The funeral service was on Sunday, August 17th at the First Presbyterian Church of Leonia. His body was buried the following day in Clayton, North Carolina—the place of his birth (Herald Tribune, 1946).

Works Cited

  • Grimke & Howells. (1998). Encyclopedia of world biography. Detroit: Galep Research.“Hear Educator as Graduates Get Diplomas” (Newspaper article. No date given).Herald Tribune. (1946).
  • Horne, H. H. (1937). Philosophy of Christian education. NewYork: Fleming H. Revel.
  • Horne, H. H. (1982). Teaching techniques of Jesus. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications. (Revised and updated by Angus M Gunn)
  • Rood, W. R. (1970). Understanding Christian education. Nashville: Abingdon Press.
  • Who was who in America. (1950). Chicago: A.H. Marquis Company.

Contributions to Christian Education

Time is a key factor in determining a person’s influence and contributions. Continued public interest in the life and works of notable people usually indicates a depth of value perhaps missing from other writings.

One of Herman Harrell Horne's major contributions, particularly in the fields of religious and Christian education, was his book Jesus, the master teacher. This work has been popular in religious and evangelical circles since its first publication in 1920. Horne's questions, as well as his depth and methods of study, catch the fascination and imagination of serious Bible students. Jesus, the master teacher was first published for the YMCA and was written when few other books paid any attention to the pedagogy of Jesus. The purpose of the book was first to show how Jesus taught and secondly, "to influence our own methods of teaching morals and religion" (Horne, 1920, p. x). The focus of the book is not on content but on the "form in which this content is cast" (p. xi). Horne once said, "[President G. Stanley Hall] has helped me to see Jesus as the Great Teacher, though I do not accept his two essential conclusions that the real Christ is psychological and that religion is racially subjective" (p. xi). The book was republished in 1964 under the title, Teaching Techniques of Jesus, by Kregel Publications House, and has greatly influenced evangelical Christendom, perhaps even more than most modern-day Christians realize.

Many have used the Evangelical Training Association book, Teaching techniques, without realizing the great extent to which Horne influenced this work (Horne, 1982, p. vi). In writing this book, Dr. Horne approached the Word of God reverently in order to discover what the New Testament had to say about Jesus’ teaching methods. Horne was not alone in his search to discover the teaching methods of Jesus. He stressed active learning and dealt with reliable principles of education. Countless Sunday schoolteachers and prospective teachers who were open to change and challenge have been positively influenced after reading this book. Though available in print since 1920, the principles enumerated within the book have scarcely been used within many churches.

A second major influence of Horne was his advocacy of idealism, particularly when pragmatism by John Dewey was making in-roads in the American education scene. Dr. Harold Mason, professor emeritus of Asbury Seminary, stated, “He was the biggest available man to meet John Dewey head on” (Horne, 1982, p. vi). While John Dewey was expounding his pragmatic philosophy of education at Columbia University, Horne was teaching in the same city and providing a significant idealist alternative to Dewey. Though never caustic in his opposition to Dewey, Horne responded in the framework of one who was dedicated to Christ. He defined education as "the eternal process of superior adjustment of the physically and mentally developed, free, conscious, human being to God as manifested n the intellectual, emotional, and volitional environment of man" (Horne, 1927, p. 285).

Horne believed that the purpose of education would lead a person toward virtue as one created in the image of God. The objective of education is "that our pupils should act rightly, think rightly and feel rightly," or "adjustment of the child to Goodness, Truth and Beauty" (Rood, 1970, p. 235). This is in stark contrast to Dewey’s idea of education as “the reconstruction of experience.” Dewey focused upon the scientific method; Horne believed that content, particularly moral and Christian content, needed to be transmitted to the student. While Dewey denied God, Horne believed that God was the primary educator (Rood, 1970, p. 232). Horne rejected the pragmatic concept of truth because when the earth was round people thought it was flat, and the earth revolved around the sun when people thought the sun rose in the East and set in the West. He said that fake ideas may work, but it does not make them true. Truth of an idea consists in its adequate representation of fact and not its workability. Horne contended that pragmatism fails because it eliminates man's conscious contacts with the Infinite, and it does not adequately represent the nature of man's reflective powers which are concerned with the transcendent as well as with the empirical (Horne, 1927, pp. 150-151). Horne also believed that pragmatic philosophy does not regard the intellect of man as a mode of discovering truth but as a means of satisfying desires. Man's thinking is viewed as instrumental, not revelatory (Horne, 1931, p. 103). Thus we see Horne’s rationale for rejecting pragmatism.

In Horne’s book, The Philosophy of Education (1927), he articulated his philosophy of education: "The part implies the whole, the meaning of the part is that it suggests the nature of the whole” (Grimke & Howells, 1998, p. 504). Thus, the meaning of an individual’s being educated, then, lies within the whole. Although our knowledge of the whole is incomplete, the whole partially manifests itself through its parts. For example, we know many things about the human mind and how it works, how good mental health is maintained, and what happens when mental illness afflicts us; however, we do not know as much as we would like to know. What we do have, however, helps us to study the mind and learn even more about health and illness. So it is with education. We may not know in every respect precisely how we can produce better people through education, but we have some partial knowledge, and we should put that knowledge to use. The ideal is spiritual and eternal, while human beings are caught up in a natural world of space and time; hence, the role of idealistic philosophy of education is to show how through education man may find himself as a part of eternal spiritual reality.

Horne argued that educators must consider three main concepts. First, the origin of man is God, the Ultimate Mind, and the distinguishing factor about the creation called “man” is the human mind. It is through the education of the mind by disciplined study that man perceives and orders the world about him and is able to contemplate God. Second, the nature of man is freedom, for man can choose and decide, although he may do this imperfectly or even badly. Thus, man can choose to be educated, as well as to grow and develop in understanding and comprehension. However, he can also choose not to think. But if man does seek education and the full development of his mind, he becomes what he was intended to be—a thinking being who is capable of choosing and acting wisely. Third is man’s destiny. Because no person is all he/she can ever be, since we are all in the process of developing, one’s education is never completed. This continual seeking does not end with an individual’s death, for it is passed from generation to generation. It extends beyond finite, individual humans to the infinite human ideal for the whole human race. Man’s destiny, then, is immortality, or to return to God and enter the realm that is spiritual and eternal.

Science and technology have developed since his day, thus Horne's idealism seems to have lost some of its appeal as philosophies such as pragmatism have offered more realistic and practical analyses. Horne rose to the challenge with one of his most popular books, The Democratic Philosophy of Education (1932, 1978), which was a critical appraisal of John Dewey’s progressive educational ideas. Horne’s book offered many cogent criticisms and refined analyses of Dewey’s ideas and was a welcome addition to the literature of philosophy of education, although it did not stem the tide of philosophical change. Idealism continued to wane in both philosophy and the theory of education (Grimke & Howells, 1998, p. 504).

Upon Horne’s retirement from New York University, the RHO News summarized his "Ideals for Society" for change and the future. The following is a partial list of his views. (a) "World-mindedness" or global perspectives are needed when all solutions are considered for today's problems. (b) Global network of justice served by an international law and having an international police force is needed in our world. (c) Each nation has self-determination by its people. (d) There is the need for a world in which peace is loved and desired by all. (e) We need governments that care for people in all stages of life. (f) We also need an economic system of fairness and justness to all in which rich and poor are not found. (g) We need societies that are interdependent on one another and where there is religious freedom and no racism--a society built on the cornerstone of justice and respect for each person (RHO News, 1944, p. 3). Horne's "ideals" can be described as utopian, but perhaps our world needs ideals in order to understand what is “better.” Horne gave the world some lofty goals!

A final contribution left to us by Horne was his teaching legacy. Due to his many years of teaching, he influenced the next generation of educators considerably by virtue of his years in the classroom. His popularity as a teacher and his many publications influenced several generations of classroom teachers and educational leaders in the nation’s schools. Some of his students became prominent educational leaders, such as Harry Woodburn Chase (later chancellor of New York University); Edmund Ezra Day (later president of Cornell University); and Frank Porter Graham (later president of the University of North Carolina). Horne taught over 10,000 students and sponsored more than fifty doctoral candidates. He wrote numerous articles and authored or edited twenty-six books, some of which were translated into Chinese, Japanese, and Portuguese. He was a master teacher who used the Socratic method to provoke thinking in his students. He believed that the teacher must know well both the subject and the student. Horne viewed the student as a finite person who grows into the image of an infinite person. The origin of the student is deity, his nature is freedom, and his destiny is immortality (Rood, 1970, p. 234). Education begins with the learner. The teacher must awaken in the student the desire to learn and must be a true friend of the student. The teacher, according to Horne, is the key to the educational process since he/she is the "embodiment of personal reality for the child," and he/she determines what the student’s opportunity for growing shall be (Rood, 1970, p. 236). Not only did he teach these principles, but H. H. Horne practiced them, as well.

To the religious community, Horne was not the deliberate theologian, writing great works on obscure theological concepts, but he was a student of the Bible, asking questions of the text, forcing his mind (and the minds of later Bible students) to view Jesus not only as Savior and Lord but a Master Teacher--a Master Teacher who knows His students and how to communicate truth through a variety of ways and situations. In the historical flow of ideas in the early twentieth century, H. H. Horne was a man who stood for transcendent ideals. The principles of Idealism permit more than the pragmatic, the visible, and the empirical world. Though John Dewey’s popularity overshadowed H. H. Horne’s, we see two people and two conflicting worldviews that have greatly affected today's behaviors.

Works Cited

  • Grimke & Howells. (1998). Encyclopedia of world biography. Detroit: Galep Research.
  • Horne, H. H. (1904). The philosophy of education: Being the foundation of education in the related natural and mental sciences. New York: Macmillan.
  • Horne, H. H. (1920). Jesus, the master teacher. New York: Association Press.
  • Horne, H. H. (1927). Jesus as philosopher, and other radio talks. New York: Abingdon Press.
  • Horne, H. H. (1931). The essentials of leadership, and other papers in moral and religious education. Nashville: Cokesbury Press.
  • Horne, H. H. (1982). Teaching techniques of Jesus. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications.
  • RHO News. (May 1944).New York: Phi Delta Kappa, New York University.
  • Rood, W. R. (1970). Understanding Christian education. Nashville: Abingdon Press.



  • (1894). What is religion? Chapel Hill, NC: University Press.
  • (1899). The history and philosophy of the problem of sin. Unpublished manuscript. Ph D thesis. Harvard University.
  • (1904). The philosophy of education, being the foundations of education in the related natural and mental sciences. New York: The Macmillan Company.
  • (1906). The psychological principles of education: A study in the science of education. New York: The Macmillan Company.
  • (1910). Idealism in education, or first principles in the making of men and women. New York: The Macmillan Company.
  • (1912). Free will and human responsibility: A philosophical argument. New York: The Macmillan Company.
  • (1912). The leadership of bible study groups. New York: Association Press.
  • (1916). Story telling, questioning and studying, three school arts. New York: The Macmillan Company.
  • (1917). The teacher as artist: An essay in education as an aesthetic process. Boston: Houghton Mifflin company.
  • (1918). Jesus our standard. New York: The Abingdon Press.
  • (1918). Modern problems as Jesus saw them. New York: Association Press.
  • (1920). Jesus the master teacher. New York: Association Press.
  • (1920). Jesus—the master teacher: New York: Association Press. (Republished in 1964. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications.)
  • (1926). Christ in man-making. New York: The Abingdon Press.
  • (1927). Jesus as a philosopher and other radio talks. New York: The Abingdon Press.
  • (1931). The essentials of leadership and other papers in moral and religious education. Nashville, TN: Cokesbury Press.
  • (1931). This new education. New York: The Abingdon Press.
  • (1932). The democratic philosophy of education: Companion to Dewey’s democracy and education. New York: The Macmillan Company.
  • (1937). The philosophy of Christian education. The James Sprunt lectures for 1937, Union Theoological Seminary in Virginia. New York: Fleming H. Revell Company.
  • (1945). Shakespeare’s philosophy of love. Raleigh, NC: Edwards and Broughton Company.
  • (1945). Shakespeare’s philosophy of love. Privately Printed by the author.
  • (1971). Teaching techniques of Jesus. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel. (Reprint of Jesus – the Master Teacher)


  • (1936). Horne, H. H. and Smith, C. R. Quintillian on education: Selections from the institutes of oratory. New York: New York University Bookstore.

Books edited

  • (1916). Horne, I. C. H. Simple southern songs. New York: T. A. Wright.
  • (1917). Horne, I. C. H. Songs of sentiment. New York: The Neale Publishing Company.
  • (1926). Horne, I. C. H. Romantic rambles. Raleigh, NC: Edwards & Broughton.

Contributions in other books

  • (1937). Chapter 16, “Progress in education”, and Chapter 17, “The philosophy of education,” in Skinner, Charles E., and R. Emerson Langfitt, (eds), An introduction to modern education. Boston: D.C Health and Company.
  • (1939). Chapter 5, “Academic Freedom,” in John A Andrews and Carl A Marsden, editors, Tomorrow in the making. New York: McGraw Hill Book Comapany.


  • (1903). A syllabus of lectures, summer school of theology. Harvard: Privately printed.
  • (1910). The function of a school pedagogy. Boston: Boston University.
  • (1916). The art of questioning. Boston: Congregational Sunday School and Publishing Society.
  • (1927). A syllabus in the philosophy of education (Introductory Course) based on the Dewey-Killpatrick Views. New York: New York University Press Book Store.
  • (1931). John Dewey’s philosophy, especially the quest for certainty. Boston: Boston University School of Religious Education and School Service.
  • (1936). The philosophy held by Jesus. Norfolk, VA: No printer.
  • (1942). The master light. An address at a testimonial luncheon held November 2, 1942.
  • (1945). Changeless verities. Abstract of an address at the summer commencement of the Biblical seminary. New York.

Periodical Articles

  • (1905, Oct). The development and training of the will. The School Review, 13. 616-634.
  • (1906, Jan). The use of the Bible in the public schools. The Biblical World, 27. 55-59.
  • (1906, Oct). Practical and impractical ways of educating the will. Education, 27. 85-91.
  • (1908, Mar). The study of education by prospective college instructors. School Review, 16. 162-170.
  • (1909, May). The practical influence of the new views on formal disciplines. Education, 29. 614-623.
  • (1910, January). The function of a school of pedagogy. New York University Alumnus, 3. 9-11.
  • (1910, June). The principle underlying modern physical education. American Physical Education Review, 15. 433-439.
  • (1916, February). Cultural and vocational education. School and Society, 3. 300-304.
  • (1916, May). Royce’s idealism as a philosophy of education. The Philosophical Review, 25. 473-478.
  • (1916, Nov). The application of ontologies to education. Educational Administration and Supervision, 2. 557-559.
  • (1917, Jun). A re-statement of educational theory. Religious Education, 12. 200 – 204.
  • (1918, Feb). Again the new education. Educational Review, 75: 91-98.
  • (1920, Jan). Are we happy because we laugh? American Physical Education Review, 25. 14-16.
  • (1922, Dec). College students on the study of philosophy. School and Society, 16. 725-728.
  • (1923, Feb). What are human motives today? Religious Education, 18. 21-23.
  • (1923, Mar). University students on the discussion method. School and Society, 16. 218-221.
  • (1923, Oct). What did the cross mean to Jesus? The Biblical Review, 8. 565-577.
  • (1924, Mar). Moral and religious instruction in the public schools. The Virginia Journal of Education, 17. 269-271.
  • (1924, April). “A boy’s life,” The New York University Alumnus. 4. 342-344.
  • (1924, Apr). The teachers code of honor. School and Society, 19. 477-482.
  • (1925, Mar). Does the study of ethics improve morals, a student symposium. School and Society, 21. 330-332.
  • (1925, Dec). Our sabbatical year: 1924-1925. New York University Alumnus, 6. 9-10.
  • (1926, Jan). The teaching function of the ministry. The Biblical Review, 11. 29-39.
  • (1926, May). Religion in church and school. New York University Alumnus, 6. 10.
  • (1926, Oct). Patriotism. Journal of the National Educational Association, 15. 207.
  • (1927, Jan). Fifty points of a good church school. The Biblical Review, 12. 79-81.
  • (1927, Feb). Looking in on American education. Journal of the National Educational Association, 16. 49-51.
  • (1927, Jul). Jesus as a philosopher. The Biblical Review, 12. 361-371.
  • (1927, Nov). The ministry of teaching. The Methodist Review, 110. 839-852.
  • (1928, Jan). Helps to better living, how is a bad character formed? The Christian Herald, 51. 33,49.
  • (1928, Feb). Complete living as the goal of education. Education, 48. 337-342.
  • (1928, Feb). What is internationalism? Brooklyn Central, 27. 8.
  • (1928, Mar). Helps to better living, how is good character formed? The Christian Herald, 51. 259, 267.
  • (1928, Aug). The basic content of a course in the philosophy of education. School and Society, 28. 131-134.
  • (1928, Sep). Confessions of faith in the R.E.A. Religious Education, 23. 612-613.
  • (1928, Oct). A program for religious education for the community. Journal of Religious Education, 5. 13-14.
  • (1929, Nov). Complete living as the goal of education. Bulletin of High Points, 11. 3-7.
  • (1929, Nov). Religious education: Our dangers and our needs. The Methodist Review, 112. 812-818.
  • (1930, Jan). Determining the curriculum of the public schools: From the point of view of a philosopher. Educational Service, 2. 9-10.
  • (1930, May- Jun). The philosophy of greatness. The Methodist Review, 113. 403-407.
  • (1931, Feb). Some doubts about ‘progressive education’. New Haven Teacher’s Journal. 7
  • (1934, Mar). Call to the teachers of the nation. School and Home, 15. 295 – 299.
  • (1935, May). The democratic tradition in American education. School and Society, 41. 631-634.
  • (1935, Oct). The democratic tradition in American education. J.S. H School Clearing House, 10. 74-79.
  • (1936, Sep). The activity read to utopia. The Journal of Health and Physical Education, 7. 407-409.
  • (1937, Oct- Nov). If I were a student again. The Korean Student Bulletin, 16. 4-5.
  • (1939, Feb). Some main facts in the life of John Dewey. The Philosophic Mind, 1. 30-31.
  • (1939, Mar). Principles of education vs. philosophy of education. The Philosophical Mind, 1. 41-42.
  • (1939, May). The educational philosophy of Dean John H. Withers. Journal of Educational Sociology, 12. 524-533.
  • (1939, Dec). Our all Alumni section of the history of philosophy of education. The Philosophical Mind, 1. 9.
  • (1940, Mar). Dewey a modern Abou Ben Adhem. The Philosophic Mind, 1. 39.
  • (1940, Apr). Why I do not accept naturalism? The Philosophic Mind, 1. 52.
  • (1940, Oct). What is philosophy? The Philosophic Mind, 2. 6.
  • (1940, Nov). Philosophy as thinking the wheel. The Philosophical mind, 2. 1.
  • (1941, Feb). The lingo of philosophy. The Philosophic Mind, 2. 37.
  • (1941, Jul). Health of mind. The Alpha Circle of the City of Boston Educational Service Quarterly, 6. 1-4.
  • (1941, Mar). The universe a fact. The Philosophic Mind, 2. 47.
  • (1941, Nov). Why no slang for “Philosophical”? The Philosophic Mind, 2. 12.
  • (1942). I remember. New York University Alumni Bulletin, 6. 3.
  • (1942, Aug). Valedictory. School and Society, 56. 153-155.
  • (1942, Oct). Health of mind. Boston Teachers News Letter. 15-18.
  • (1942, Dec). Maintaining spiritual values in war time. The Watchman Examiner. 1187-1188.
  • (1945, Jan). Three competing philosophies of education. The Educational Forum, 9. 133-138.
  • (1946, Mar). A professor’s nightmare. Social and Society. 63: 212.
  • (1946, Apr). Shintoism. Self, 1. 5-6.
  • (1946, Jun). The nature of man is freedom. Self, 1. 5-6.

Publications of Learned Organizations

  • Horne, H. H. (1904). Discussion on ‘Religious Education’ in the Home, and ‘Religious teaching in the public schools’. Proceedings of the Second Annual Convention of the Religious Education Association. Philadelphia.
  • _______ . (1905). The indirect education of the will. The Proceedings of the Third Annual Convention of the Religious Education Association. Boston.
  • _______ . (1932). Freedom, social planning, and leadership. Proceedings of the National Educational Association. p 246.
  • _______ . (1932). The quest for the more abundant life: Through philosophy. Proceedings of the 1932 Spring Conference of the Eastern – States Association of Professional Teachers. 152-159.
  • ______ . (1942). An idealistic philosophy of education. Forty-first Yearbook of the National Society for the Study of Education. Part 1. Chicago, IL: Distributed by the department of education, The University of Chicago, 139-195.

Encyclopedia Articles

  • The following items are from a bibliography developed by Raymond F. Surburg in his 1950 Ph.D. dissertation, An evaluation of the educational philosophy of Herman Harrell Horne.” Forham University, New York.
  • Horne, H. H. Duns Scotus, John. A Cyclopedia of Education (Vol. II, pp 377-378).
  • ________ . Schlegel, August Wilhelm Von. A Cyclopedia of Education (Vol. V, p 251).
  • ________ . Schleiermacher, Friedrich Daniel Ernest. A Cyclopedia of Education (Vol. V, pp 251-252.
  • ________ . Sophists. A Cyclopedia of Education (Vol. V, pp 363-364).
  • ________ . Religious education, Ancient history of. The Encyclopedia of Sunday Schools and Religious Education (Vol. II, pp 434 – 435).
  • ________ . Pestalozzi, Johann Heinrich. The Encyclopedia of Sunday Schools and Religious Education (Vol. II, p 792).
  • ________ . Herbart, Johann Friedrich. The Encyclopedia of Sunday Schools and Religious Education (Vol. II, pp 516-517).

Unpublished material

  • Horne, H. H. (1899). The history and philosophy of the problem of sin. Unpublished Doctor’s dissertation, Harvard University, Cambridge.

Book Reviews

  • Horne, H. H. (1928). Review of Education for a Changing Civilization, W. H. Kilpatrick. School and Society 27: 270-271.
  • ________ . (1929). Review of Conflicting Psychologies of Learning, Boyd H Bode. School and Society 25: 891-893.
  • ________ . (1930). Review of The Teaching of Ideals, W. W. Charters. Educational Service 2: 3-4.
  • ________ . (1932). Review of Education and the Philosophy of Experimentalism, John L. Childs. School and Society 35: 163-165.
  • ________ . (1940). Review of Modern Educational Theories, Boyd H. Bode. School and Society 52: 62-62.
  • ________ . (1941). Review of The Activity School, Gustav G. Schoenchen. School and Society 54: 419-420.
  • ________ . (1943). Review of The Philosophy of American Education, John T. Wahlquist. School and Society 57: 441-442.

Writings about Horne

  • Ediger, M. (Fall, 1996). John Dewey versus H. H. Horne on education. Education, Vol. 117, 1, p 89- 90.
  • Ediger, M. (Winter, 1996). Herman H. Horne and the curriculum. Reading Improvement Vol. 33, p 215-219.
  • Endres, A. (1944). The educational philosophy of Herman Herrell Horne. (MA. Thesis, Catholic University of America, 1944.)
  • Seckinger, D. S. (1965) The educational philosophy of Herman Harrell Horne. (Dissertation: Thesis - University of California Los Angeles. 1965) OCLC: 7751575
  • Surburg, R. F. (1950). An evaluation of the educational philosophy of Hermann Harrell Horne. (Dissertation, PhD Thesis, Fordham University, 1950) OCLC: 15559008
  • Thompson, E. B. (1950). The philosophy of religion held by Herman Harrell Horne. (Dissertation: PhD Thesis, New York University, School of Education, 1950)

Excerpts from Publications

Horne, H. H. (1918). Modern problems as Jesus saw them. New York: Association Press.

Probably the biggest question before the Christian churches today is, “Can Jesus save society?” There is an individual gospel which puts the person right with God and man, whatever the conditions, and there is a social gospel which makes the conditions of living right. The individual and the social gospel are two phases of the one gospel of love. The individual gospel emphasizes the love of man for God, the social gospel the love of man for man. Historically, the church has emphasized the individual gospel; it is coming also to emphasize the social gospel. The individual gospel, as inadequately preached, has aimed to get souls into heaven after death; the social gospel aims to get heaven into souls before death. The individual gospel has aimed to keep souls out of hell after death; the social gospel aims to keep hell out of souls before death. The individual gospel plucks souls as brands from the burning, the social gospel puts out the fire. (Extracted from the preface, p viii).

Horne, H. H. (1932). The democratic philosophy of education: Companion to Dewey’s democracy and education. New York: Macmillan. p 7.

When we think of “life” or “experience” as something more than physical, it “covers customs, institutions, beliefs, victories and defeats, recreations and occupations.” In this sense also life continues through renewal, as is evident in any social group. The means whereby a social group continues itself, renews itself, maintains its ideals, is, in the broadest sense of the term, “education.”Unless there were education in this sense, the characteristic life of the group would cease with the death of the elders. The young must be preserved physically and initiated socially, learning the ways of the elders, if the life of the group is to continue. This is the necessity of education. It spans the gap between the ignorance and indifference of the young and the aims and habits of the social group. As biological life maintains and transmits itself by nutrition and reproduction, so social life transmits itself by education. The young of human beings are so immature and inefficient that even survival requires special pains and tuition.

Horne, H. H. (1932). The democratic philosophy of education: Companion to Dewey’s democracy and education. New York: Macmillan. p 54 - 56.

Growth, strictly regarded, is enlargement of physical organ or mental function; development is marked by the appearance of new functions or powers. By growth the tissue cells multiply; by development they become differentiated and mature. A little oak becomes a large oak by growth; an acorn becomes a little oak by development. A little chick becomes a chicken mainly by growth; an egg becomes a chick by development…Growth without development is burdensome; development without growth is weakness. Nature must be helped to secure the proportionate amount of both growth and development.But what difference does it make whether a child only grows up or both grows and develops? A great deal. A relatively underdeveloped mind may very well inhabit a grown body, and a relatively developed mind may very well inhabit a poorly grown body. Education is to secure both right growth and right development of both the physical and the mental constituents of experience.A very significant point is this, that growth is less dependant on internal factors than is development. By and large, growth is from without, development is from within; growth is dependent on external stimulation, development upon internal changes. Thus, by no manner of means can an acorn become a chick, or a chick become a child. Development is in a measure prefigured in the egg as growth is not. Thus development is rather a matter of nature and growth a matter of nurture. And in this sense nature is probably more than nurture.

Horne, H. H. (1932). The democratic philosophy of education: Companion to Dewey’s democracy and education. New York: Macmillan. p 462, 463.

Thus appears the intimate connection between philosophy and education. They are reciprocally serviceable. Education saves philosophy from the artificial and makes it vital; philosophy saves education from routine and makes it socially effective. To amplify these views somewhat, we note that education is interested in the human, in distinction from the technical, significance of philosophical discussions. A philosophical theory which makes no difference in educational practice must be artificial. The student of philosophy needs warning not to take it as so much nimble or severe intellectual exercise or as something said by philosophers that is of concern to them alone. Philosophic issues really formulate life situations; this is apparent when we ask, to what mental disposition do they correspond? What differences in educational practice do they make? The educational point of view enables the student to see philosophical problems in the practical social settings where they arise, thrive, are at home, and make a difference. Philosophy audits past experience; philosophy’s program of values must affect conduct; the alternative is for philosophy to remain verbal, symbolic, or a sentimental indulgence for a few, or mere arbitrary dogma. Philosophy indicates what social changes are desirable; education produces the mental and moral attitudes necessary to bring about these changes. In doing so education calls to its aid public agitation, propaganda, and legislative and administrative action; these all help to modify attitudes.

Horne, H. H. (1964). Jesus the master teacher. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications.

The essential qualifications of a world – teacher: A vision that encompasses the world. Knowledge of the heart of man. Mastery of the subject taught. Aptness in teaching. A life that embodies the teaching. …Shall we then conclude that Jesus fully possessed the five requisite qualifications of a world teacher? The fact that the centuries have shown him to be a world-teacher would be experiential proof of an affirmative answer. That his followers number more today than ever before, and that they are full of faith and works, also shows that in time all the world is to know his teaching.


(1920). Jesus—the master teacher: New York: Association Press. (Republished in 1964. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications.)

One of Horne’s major contribution, especially to the field of Christian education was his book ‘Jesus the master teacher’. This book has been a very popular source used both in religious and evangelical circles since it was first published in 1920. Horne was one of the early educators in modern times to recognize and highlight the value and relevance of Jesus as a master teacher. This book was written in a time when very few paid attention to the pedagogy of Jesus. Horne’s argument for this book is that the pedagogy of Jesus is superior to those prevailing in the public schools of the United States. This is an excellent work that reflects Horne’s deep understanding of Jesus as a teacher and his methodology. The purpose of this book was not only to show how Jesus taught, but to convince the reader that Jesus’ methods are relevant and they need to influence our own methods of teaching. This book was republished in 1964 as “Teaching techniques of Jesus”, by Kregel Publishing House.

(1932). The democratic philosophy of education: Companion to Dewey’s democracy and education. New York: Macmillan. (Republished in 1978. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.)

This is one of the best sellers written by Horne that was also translated into several languages. It is basically a critique of John Dewey’s famous book ‘Democracy and education’. Horne presented the deficiencies in Dewey’s definition of democracy and explains why pragmatism does not work in education. He criticized Dewey’s progressive educational ideas and offered many helpful criticisms and analysis of educational ideas. Horne emphasized that the purpose of education was to lead a person to virtue as one created in God’s image. He strongly objected the pragmatic view of Dewey because pragmatism eliminates man’s conscious contacts with the Infinite. He argued that pragmatic philosophy does not regard the intellect of man as a mode to discovering truth but as a means of satisfying our own desires. This book is a very strong argument against Dewey’s pragmatism and presents great analysis of Horne’s educational methodology.

(1937). The philosophy of Christian education. New York: Fleming H. Revell Company.

In this book Horne clearly articulates his philosophy of education. Horne notes that even though our knowledge of the whole is limited and incomplete, yet the whole partially manifests itself through its parts. We definitely do not know everything we need to know about education, but we do have some partial knowledge that should help us to grow closer to the whole. He emphasizes that we should put our present knowledge to use so that we can grow in our knowledge of education. The role of idealistic philosophy of education is to show how through education man may find himself as a part of eternal spiritual reality. Horne deals with three main concepts in this book. 1) The origin of man is God, and it is only through education of the mind that man perceives the world around him and is able to contemplate God. 2) The nature of man is freedom, and if seek education and the full development of his mind, he becomes what he was intended to be. 3) Man’s destiny is immortality, and to enter the realm that is spiritual and eternal.

Author Information

Dennis D. Fledderjohann

Dennis D. Fledderjohann (Ph.D., Loyola University of Chicago) serves as Professor of Educational Ministries teaching in the undergraduate program at Moody Bible Institute. His exposure to Horne’s writings on Jesus’ teaching methods influenced his own use of inductive teaching methods and writings in this area. Purushotham F. Burgula (doctoral student, Talbot School of Theology) worked with the Union of Evangelical Students of India for 10 years before coming to Talbot to pursue his Ph D. He has his Bachelor of Divinity from Union Biblical Seminary, Pune, India and has a Master’s degree in ‘Philosophy’ from Osmania University in India and his second Masters in CE from Talbot. He is the editor and the major contributor for the book “Faith and Focus” produced by the UESI- AP, that is designed to teach the basic biblical doctrines to lay Christian leaders and for University students.

Francis Burgula

No information available.