The Hemlock Club (Philosophy)

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Previous/other names: UNB's Student Philosophy Club

Prominent date(s) of activity: 1952 - ?; 1961 - present

History: When the UNB Students' Philosophy Club was established in the fall of 1952, weekly meetings were held to which all students and community members were encouraged to attend.

After a wane in attendence between 1979 and 1982, the club, which had been renamed The Hemlock Club in the early sixties, began showing films and video presentations on controversial issues including abortion, war, euthanasia, the law, and capital punishment. This new format appealed to a wider audience.

Activities: The Hemlock Club meets twice monthly to discuss philosophical essays and books by famous authors and to hold panel discussions on a broad range of topics.

Note(s): The club was named after the fatal poison drank by the Greek philosopher Socrates when he was sentenced to death for corrupting the minds of youth. Members of the group concluded each meeting with the ritual drinking of an inocuous dose of hemlock.

Source(s):

  • UA Case 173.
  • The Brunswickan, vol. 73, no. 11, 1953, p. 1.
  • Student Union, Clubs and Societies, [The Hemlock Club]
  • Up the Hill, 1983, p. 92.


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