Recent News

The Melvin Rader Endowed Fund was established in October of 2009 by Philip and Estelle DeLacy. It will provide funds for student fellowships in philosophy. The generous endowment honors former philosophy faculty, Professor Melvin Rader. Rader was born in Walla Walla, Washington in 1903, and received three degrees from the UW (B.A., 1925; M.A., 1927; Ph.D., 1929). He joined the UW Philosophy Department as an Assistant Professor in 1930 where he went on to teach ethics, aesthetics, and political... Read more
Beyond Respect for Autonomy Recent public debates on issues such as physician assisted suicide and control over genetic samples highlight the importance of autonomy in American life and in American medicine. We want control over how things go in our lives, and we don't want others to force us to act against our will. Yet respect for autonomy has its limits, and in the realm of medicine, these limits are in need of some careful examination. Respect for autonomy is a fundamental... Read more
"Doing" Philosophy with Children The Northwest Center for Philosophy for Children is a non-profit organization affiliated with the University of Washington's Department of Philosophy. For 14 years, the Center has been introducing philosophy into the lives of young people by "doing" philosophy in K-12 classrooms. The Center's "Philosophers in the Schools" program brings philosophical discussion to classrooms by teaching adults, via their workshops, ways to facilitate... Read more
Every year I sit down to a blank screen and begin to try to recall key events of this past year, and try to look briefly into my crystal ball to see if there are any glimmers of the future. As I try to compose my "Words" for this newsletter, I notice that there is a tray of donuts on the counter. The question that occurs to me is: "Can an academic department subsist on Top Pot Donuts?" Some days it seems like we do. Lately, I am beginning to think about a life without being Chair of the... Read more
We are pleased to introduce the newest member of the Philosophy Department's faculty, Colin Marshall. Professor Marshall is currently teaching Modern Philosophy (PHIL 322). During winter quarter he will be teaching Philosophy of Kant (PHIL 438) and a Seminar in Modern Philosophy (PHIL 522). This spring he is slotted for one of our large lecture courses, Introduction to Philosophy (PHIL 100). We recently caught up with Colin to learn more about him and his introduction to UW. What areas... Read more
Gifts to the department are crucial to our success in enhancing educational opportunities for our students. The Philosophy Department at the University of Washington thanks the following individuals and organizations, as well as those donors who wish to remain anonymous, whose contributions help to support our programs. Undergraduate student awards, scholarships, and resources for graduate scholarships would be impossible without the support of our donors. We also depend upon... Read more
by Jana Mohr Lone, Director The Center for Philosophy for Children has had a year of exponential growth. We're very excited about the expanding regional and national K-12 philosophy field and the Center's role in supporting new initiatives around the country. The University of Chicago is starting a pre-college philosophy center modeled on the UW Center, and director Jana Mohr Lone... Read more
The Advisory Board advises the chair, supports the department's community and public relations activities, and assists in implementing fund development and outreach efforts. Advisory Board members are: David Byrne, Meaghen Friel, Dan Gerler, Jana Mohr Lone, Ann Owens, Jack Sabin and Jasmin Weaver. For the sixth year, the Board is funding the department's Outreach Coordinator position, held by Kate Goldyn. This is the only such position at the university that is funded by a department advisory... Read more
Congratulations to Kaiwen Sun for being selected as a 2013 Bonderman Travel Fellow! Bonderman Travel Fellow Kaiwen Sun, senior Philosophy and Electrical Engineering major, will be spending a minimum of 8 months traveling solo to various countries including Russia, Kazakhstan, Nepal, Bhutan, India, Kenya, and South Africa. His objective is to delve into radically different cultural ideologies, learn how those ideologies influence each culture's world outlook, and how they impact its beliefs,... Read more
Faculty Michael Blake published a new book Justice & Foreign Policy. He also finished another book, jointly written with Gillian Brock, called Justice in Emigration: Debating Brain Drain. He created a radio show about paternalism, together with Simone Chambers and Arthur Ripstein of the University of Toronto. The show is: My Brother's –... Read more