Funeral services will be Thursday for John W. “Jack” Carlson of Omaha, a longtime Creighton University philosophy professor.
He died Dec. 20 of a heart attack. Carlson was 69.
He was a philosopher in the tradition of perennial philosophy that runs throughout the history of Western philosophy. Perennial philosophy views each of the world’s religious traditions as sharing a universal truth.
Carlson had been a member of the Creighton philosophy faculty for almost two decades.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from St. Mary’s College of California in 1965 and his doctorate in philosophy from the University of Notre Dame in 1970.
He was devoted to Jesuit and Catholic higher education in the U.S.
He had been a member of the philosophy faculty at St. Louis University, associate dean and subsequently dean of arts and sciences at the University of Scranton, dean and academic vice president of Le Moyne College in DeWitt, N.Y., and vice president for academic affairs at Creighton from 1993 to 1995.
In 1995, Carlson joined the CU philosophy faculty full time, serving as department chairman from 2005 to 2008.
He was serving on the American Catholic Philosophical Association’s executive council and was active in the professional group Philosophers in Jesuit Education, serving as its president in 2009-10 and on its executive committee through 2012.
In addition to many scholarly articles, Carlson wrote and published several books. Some of them were widely adopted as required reading for philosophy courses in colleges, universities and seminaries across the United States.
He was in high demand as a lecturer on the contemporary relevance of the perennial tradition of philosophy.
Survivors include his wife, Chris of Omaha; daughters Rachael Carlson-Lieber of Washington, D.C., and Monica Carlson-Winkley of Vancouver, Wash.; and four grandchildren.
Services are set for 10:30 a.m. Thursday at St. John Catholic Church on the Creighton campus.