Archives for August 2013

Philip Swenson


B.S. (History), Central Missouri University

M.A., University of Missouri, Columbia

Contact Information:

Areas of Interest:

Ethics, Political Philosophy, Metaphysics, Agency and Philosophy of Religion


Philip is currently completing a dissertation on free will and moral responsibility in which he defends incompatibilism about responsibility and determinism. This involves responding to arguments against the principle of alternative possibilities, developing accounts of certain phenomena (such as the nature of an ability and the content of the blaming emotions or attitudes) that fit well with incompatibilism, and providing a new version of a manipulation argument against compatibilism. Along the way, he also takes up the problem of freedom and foreknowledge and explores some connections between punishment, moral responsibility and rights.


“Reasons-Responsiveness and Degrees of Responsibility” (with D. Justin Coates) Philosophical Studies (2013), 165, pp 629-645

“Ability-Based Objections to No-Best-World Arguments” (with Brian Kierland) Philosophical Studies (2013), 164, 669-683

“Skepticism about the Argument from Divine Hiddenness” (with Justin P. McBrayer) Religious Studies (2012), 48, pp 129-150

Will Swanson


B.A. (Philosophy and English), Pomona College

Areas of Interest

History of modern philosophy after Kant (especially Nietzsche, Bergson, and Heidegger)

Avery Snelson


B.A., Drury University

M.A., University of British Columbia

Areas of Interest

Nietzsche; philosophy of religion; the history of late modern philosophy; existentialism; epistemology

Patrick Ryan


B.A., University of New Hampshire

M.A., UC Riverside


Patrick works on Kant and Post-Kantian European Philosophy and moral psychology. He is particularly interested in Bergson, Cassirer, Heidegger and Merleau-Ponty. Patrick plans to defend a holistic functional account of mind in his dissertation. Patrick thinks that consideration of mathematical practice and psychopathology lead one to such a view of the mind. Thus, his research is informed by the development of mathematics and the development of brain science. He is also interested in the ethical and legal treatment of those deemed mentally ill.

Christian Pillsbury


B.A., New College, Florida

Areas of Interest

Continental and analytic philosophy; epistemology

Jonah Nagashima


B.A., Biola University

M.A., Northern Illinois University

Areas of Interest

Metaphysics, Free Will, and Philosophy of Religion.

Maxwell Murphey


B.A., Columbia University

M.A., UCRiverside


Max is working on the metaphysics and epistemology of activity, agency, and spirit in Kant and Hegel. He is also interested in philosophy of mathematics, philosophy of religion, philosophy of biology, ancient philosophy, phenomenology, modality, meta-ethics, and the analytic-continental divide.

Courtney Morris


B.A. (Philosophy and English), University of Utah

M.A. (English), SUNY at Buffalo

M.A. (Philosophy), University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Areas of Interest

History of Philosophy, Kant, Hegel, and Philosophy of Language.

Luis Montes


B.A., Azusa Pacific University

M.A., UC Riverside


Luis is currently focusing on topics in philosophy of action, practical reason, theories of reason and of motivation, and meta-ethics. He’s also interested in philosophy of religion and in continental philosophy, especially Heidegger.

Chris McVey


B.A., University of Washington


Chris is primarily interested in ethics. Specifically, he is interested in how it is we come to be moral, and conversely why it is so many of us lose our moral way. In service to these larger questions, Chris enjoys studying habituation, our practices of praise and blame, and ancient philosophy.