Born in 1948 in Newcastle, John Gray is a philosopher, political scientist and journalist, the most well known representative of British political thought in the 20th and 21st centuries. He is presently a retired professor of the London School of Economics, and devotes all of his time to writing. Up until the mid 1980s he was considered the leading ideologist of the British New Right. His work Hayek on Liberty (1984) led to his recognition as the torch-bearer and finest interpreter of neoliberalism. He then performed a radical about-face, citing liberalism as a method of seeking social accord in an era of insurmountable conflicts. He currently presents his views as postmodern or communitarian liberalism, or alternately, as green conservatism.

During his career he has lectured at Oxford, Harvard, Yale and the London School of Economics; he has lectured at the most important universities of the world. As a journalist he has contributed to such publications as The Guardian, The Independent, The London Review of Books, The New Statesman, The Literary Review, and The New York Review of Books. Nine of his books have appeared in Polish.