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About

I’m an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. After finishing my PhD in 2011 at beautiful UC Santa Barbara, I taught for two years in the Philosophy Department at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.

icon-teachI teach a range of philosophy courses, but at UAB my regulars are Bioethics (PHL 116), Ethics: Theories of Good and Evil (PHL 315), and Neuroethics (PHL 402). I occasionally teach seminars, which usually cover current debates in these areas. Read more…

icon-rsrchMost of my research is at the intersection of ethics and science (e.g. neuroethics). I’m especially interested in how we know right from wrong, despite fervent disagreements about contemporary moral issues, from abortion to human cloning. I’m currently writing a book titled Regard for Reason: A Defense of Our Moral Minds. Against the trend of pessimism, I argue that scientific evidence suggests that ordinary moral thought and action are fundamentally rational enterprises, not beholden to the passions. As a result, we can often achieve moral knowledge and virtue, despite being heavily influenced by automatic and unconscious processes that have been shaped by evolutionary pressures.

Recent articles of mine have appeared in the American Journal of BioethicsAustralasian Journal of Philosophy, Canadian Journal of Philosophy, Journal of Medical EthicsPhilosophical StudiesSynthese, and the Southern Journal of Philosophy (the Spindel Supplement’s Emerging Scholar Prize essay). Read more…

icon-otherSome other professional activities include serving as Assistant to the General Editors at the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy (which I completely redesigned in 2009 and updated in 2014) and editing several categories for PhilPapers. In July of 2014, I participated in a summer seminar on Moral Epistemology at the Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, similar to summer seminars I’ve previously attended (one on Big Questions in Free Will at Florida State University and another on Perceptual, Moral, and Religious Skepticism at Purdue University). Read more…

icon-media Philosophy isn’t just for the few in the “ivory tower.” So I try to engage the general public on philosophical issues—e.g. through interviews,  opinion pieces, blog posts, and podcasts. Read more…