Fall 2021

I am so happy to report that the department has reinhabited Savery Hall! After the university’s fast shift to online instruction in March 2020, faculty, staff, and graduate students worked almost exclusively from home for 18 months. It was a challenging transition, especially for everyone who had to shift from in-person to online instruction with just a few days’ notice. Coming back, I believe, has been even harder. The pandemic is not over. As the delta variant ascended with the passing days… Read more
The Department of Philosophy at the University of Washington is hiring a new faculty member! Our department is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive community. We encourage applications from individuals whose background and interests align with this commitment. Members of groups traditionally underrepresented in our field, including women and people of color, are strongly encouraged to apply. Assistant Professor (Area of specialization in History of Philosophy with area of… Read more
Professor Amelia Wirts was interviewed about her paper “Policing and Criminal Oppression,” featured on the APA blog, by Professor Joseph Orosco, Oregon State University, and of the Anarres Project for Alternative Futures. Wirts’ paper examines different viewpoints of what are the causes of police brutality in the United States. First… Read more
Professor José Jorge Mendoza is featured in the first episode of Borderland: An Interview Series on Immigration Ethics: José Mendoza on Immigration Enforcement, Crimmigration, Abolition and Anti-Colonialism hosted by the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University. In the interview, Mendoza explores enforcement in immigration ethics and the social construct of being an undocumented person through a philosophical lens. He notes the harsh reality of current immigration… Read more
Professor Colin Marshall discusses his work petitioning the APA for climate action: “The American Philosophical Association (APA) is one of the largest organizations for philosophers in the world, with over 10,000 members. The APA hosts three regional meetings a year. Each meeting brings together hundreds of philosophers from across the US and other countries. The meetings offer wonderful opportunities for philosophical exchanges, professional networking, and catching up with friends. But they… Read more
Ian Schnee created software to accompany the textbook Logic for Philosophy by Ted Sider (Rutgers) which he will be using in his intermediate and advanced logic courses. In teaching Introductory to Logic, Schnee has found the software essential to learning formal systems, as students need a lot of feedback on syntax and proof making, which the software gives them. However, for advanced logic, no major textbook comes with software, most likely because the market for the advanced level is… Read more
Professor Stephen Gardiner gave the 2021 Alan Saunders Lecture “Climate Crisis & institutional Denialism: Is it Time for a Global Constitutional Convention for the Young & Other Future Generations?” at the annual Australasian Association of Philosophy Conference. The lecture is available to stream on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) Radio National’s Big… Read more
Professor Stephen Gardiner gave the Annual Lecture in Humanities and Social Sciences at the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters on March 22, 2021. He spoke about how despite decades of awareness, we are currently accelerating hard into the climate problem in a way that defies standard explanations. This suggests that a focus on the scientific and economic questions is too narrow, and the tendency to see the political problem as one of nation-states facing a traditional tragedy of the… Read more
Thank you to everyone, especially our alumni panelists, who made our quarterly alumni career panels for 2021 a success. Winter quarter panel: Eugene Beliy ’12, Alessandro Regio ’12, Stephannie Stokes ’11, and Sushen Tu ‘15 Spring quarter panel: Hailey Badger ’15, Jordan Brewer ’15, Reece Johnson ’10, Ellen Parodi ’14, and Kaiwen Sun ‘15 Fall quarter panel: Jonathan Delozano ’11, Cynthia Delostrinos Johnson ’09, Carlos Madrid ’12, and Lisa Matelich ‘11 The panelists shared their wide range of… Read more
Professor Michael Blake reflects on why the U.S. must not shirk at the moral responsibility in leaving Afghanistan, after a nearly 20-year presence of American military. There are significant moral costs at stake in either remaining in or withdrawing from Afghanistan. As a political philosopher whose work focuses on international affairs, I have tried to understand how ethical reasoning might be applied to such cases. The first, and most important, ethical question might be: Is the United… Read more
Amelia Wirts examines the risks of implicit bias in criminal punishment based on ethnicity or race, reflecting on the Supreme Court’s possible reinstatement of the death penalty for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who was found guilty of bombing the crowd at the Boston Marathon in 2013 with the help of his brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev. I study criminal law and punishment as a political institution, including how it must fit within the values of a liberal democracy to be justified. Tsarnaev’s case is… Read more
Anthony Fisher and Professor Helen Beebee (University of Manchester) wrote a guest post for the Daily Nousabout their work organizing and studying David Lewis’s archive of thousands of letters and the future challenge of how to gain understanding of philosophers and the history of philosophy when email is the main source of communication. Fisher and Beebee reflect on how much they have learned about Lewis from his letters. “When we looked across his letters to detect arcs of thought we… Read more
Congratulations to lecturer Anthony Fisher on the publication of his new book Marking the Centenary of Samuel Alexander's Space, Time and Deity. The book contains three unpublished papers by Samuel Alexander, who was a leading British philosopher in the early twentieth century and part of the ‘new realism’ movement along with G.E. Moore and Bertrand Russell. Samuel Alexander is often ignored in twentieth… Read more
Nancy Jecker examines the ethics of COVID-19 travel rules in different countries after the World Health Organization labeled the Omicron variant a “variant of concern.” As of November 26, 2021, the U.S. and other countries have banned travelers from countries in southern Africa where scientist first recognized the variant. Additionally, the U.S. requires non-citizens arriving by plane to be fully vaccinated and everyone to provide a negative COVID-19 test. One argument in favor of travel bans… Read more
Engaged Philosophy interviewed 2021 UW Ph.D. recipient Paul Tubig about his work in public philosophy including teaching philosophy to incarcerated students and how that has impacted his research and teaching methods. Additionally, he addresses ways philosophy departments can encourage increased public philosophy engagement with their students and faculty. Tubig is currently assistant professor of philosophy at Georgia Southern University. What motivates you to do this work? I am… Read more
Congratulations to PhD alumnus and UW Assistant Professor in Bioethics & Humanities Tim Brown on winning the 2021 David Roscoe Award for an Early-Career Essay on Science, Ethics, and Society from the Hastings Center. His essay “Moral Bioenhancement as Potential Means of Oppression” in the Neuroethics Blog of Emory University argues that moral bioenhancements – e.g., pharmaceutical… Read more