Published November 5, 2015
Richard H. Cox, professor emeritus of political philosophy, died Oct. 22 in Erie County Medical Center following a fall in his Buffalo home. He was 90.
Born in Hammond, Indiana, Cox was an expert rifleman in the Army, serving in Europe during World War II.
Attending college on the GI Bill, he graduated summa cum laude from Northwestern University, where he earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in international relations and political philosophy. He received his doctorate from the University of Chicago. He was a member of Phi Beta Kappa.
He studied for a year at Oxford University in England on a Rockefeller Fellowship and in Lyon, France, on a Fulbright Scholarship.
Cox taught political science for two years at Harvard University and political philosophy for six years at the University of California, Berkeley before coming in 1963 to UB, where he helped form the Department of Political Science.
His research areas included ancient and modern political philosophy, the relationship of political philosophy to poetry and history, and American constitutionalism. One of his former graduate students is Iceland’s current ambassador to the United Nations. He retired in 1995.
He published several books, including “Locke on War and Peace,” and works on the poetry of the Civil War, the Declaration of Independence, political philosophy and American constitutionalism. He also taught at the Naval War College and led many Liberty Fund groups.
Cox played trumpet in the Buffalo Niagara Concert Band, formerly the Amherst Community Band. He also was an elder for many years at First Presbyterian Church in Buffalo and served on the council at Parkside Lutheran Church.