View this email in your browser

Philosophy Newsletter 2021

Message from Department Chair Cody Gilmore

Hello, newsletter readers! The COVID-19 pandemic made this the hardest year ever for the Department of Philosophy, but it was much better than it would have been were it not for the talents and efforts of students, faculty, and staff. 

All lectures, discussion sections, office hours, oral defenses, reading groups, colloquium talks, and other department activities were conducted remotely. Access to our physical space in the Social Sciences and Humanities Building (The Death Star) was restricted. A cohort of graduate students are now finishing their first year, in many cases without ever having met their professors or fellow students face to face. Many of our faculty, staff, and graduate students have pandemic-related caregiving responsibilities, or other personal situations at home, that are rightly taking priority over work and departmental activities. And many in the department, especially those in underrepresented groups, have been deeply affected by the waves of racism and violence that have been sweeping the country. One of the cruel facts about this traumatic year is that its impact has been so unevenly distributed.

Amid this, we have tried to support our students and each other, and we have carried on, in a remote and sometimes limited way, with our studies and jobs. There have been moments of levity as well. Our faculty social committee, consisting of Zoe Drayson, Rohan French, Tina Rulli, and Hannah Tierney, organized several Zoom-based social events for the department, including a game of ‘Whose refrigerator is this?’.

And there have been moments to celebrate. Two faculty members, Zoe Drayson and Rohan French, were promoted from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor with tenure. Professor Drayson specializes in philosophy of mind and cognitive science. She has taken the lead over the past six years in Philosophy’s contributions to the new and hugely popular Cognitive Science major at UCD. She has also been, among much else, Philosophy’s representative to the Alliance for Multi-campus Inclusive Graduate Admissions (AMIGA), and the faculty convener of the MENTaL reading group. Professor French specializes in philosophical logic and formal philosophy more broadly. He is the faculty convener of the weekly Logic, Language, Epistemology, Metaphysics, and Mathematics (LLEMMa) reading group and is a go-to guru for the many students and faculty working on formal philosophy in our department. Both Professor Drayson and Professor French have carried unusually heavy service and advising loads throughout their time at Davis, and the department is seriously in their debt. To each of them: congratulations, and thank you! 

We hired Alejandro Naranjo Sandoval as Assistant Professor. Professor Naranjo Sandoval earned undergraduate degrees in Mathematics and Philosophy at Cornell University and is scheduled to defend his PhD dissertation, On the Relation between Kant and Leibniz: Intuition, Sensibility, and Cognition, at Princeton University later this summer. He specializes in Kant and Early Modern Philosophy and has additional research interests in philosophy of race and social ontology. Welcome, Professor Naranjo Sandoval! 

Professor Alyssa Ney published The World in the Wave Function: A Metaphysics for Quantum Physics (Oxford University Press, 2021) and has given presentations on the book at a series of conferences. Congrats, Professor Ney!

Finally, graduate student I-Sen Chen is scheduled to defend his PhD dissertation, Converse Intentionalism and Experiential Content, in June, and has accepted a position equivalent to tenure-track Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Sichuan University. Congratulations, I-Sen!

The department bids farewell to two faculty members this year. Professor Roberta Millstein, who specializes in philosophy of biology, philosophy of science, and environmental ethics, joined the department in 2006 and will retire and become Professor Emerita as of July 1. We are happy to report that she will not be leaving us entirely, as she plans to see out the PhD dissertations she is currently supervising. Congratulations, Professor Millstein, and thank you for contributions to the department and the university!

Professor Molyneux, who specializes in philosophy of mind and epistemology, joined the department in 2006 and has returned to his native U.K. to make a transition into software engineering. Thank you for your service, Professor Molyneux; we wish you all the best.

With sadness we report the death of Professor Emeritus William H. Bossart (1931 — 2021). Professor Bossart specialized in continental philosophy and wrote on Kant, Hegel, Heidegger, and Sartre, among others. He joined the department (as its second faculty member, after Arthur Child) in 1957 and retired in 1993. He was chair from 1972 to 1982. To his family, friends, and former students and colleagues, we send our sincere condolences. Professor Bossart is interviewed on video here:

As always, we are deeply grateful to the Barrall family for their support of the Barrall Family Scholarship Fund and the Barrall Family Lecture. We thank Alan Templeton for his support of Philosophy and the College of Letters and Science. We are also grateful for a gift from the the Wagenlis Foundation in support of graduate education, and to Professor Rick Schubert of Cosumnes River College, who received his PhD in Philosophy from UCD in 1999, for helping to connect us with the Foundation. 

Most of all, thanks to the staff, faculty, and students whose hard work, patience, and perseverance got us through an extremely difficult year. Our Summer Session classes will be taught remotely, but we expect to be back to in-person instruction, with classrooms at full capacity, in Fall Quarter. Here’s to better times ahead!


Philosophy Majors Cited for Outstanding Performance
Antonio Aguilar
Caitlyn Elizabeth Batty
Delaney Rebecca Miller
Justin J Prentice
Kevin Justin Gines,
Kieran James Monks
Lemuel Herg
Marah Raed Sabbah
Menzhu Yuan
Muhammad Hamza Khan
Noah Guajardo Schwarzbach
Siu Tang Alex Lee
Tian (Leo) Chen
Victoria Vicuña
Xiaoyi Zhao

MAs Awarded
Shannon Allen
Hermes Rocha

Letters and Science Graduate Summer Fellowship
Chanwoo Lee
Selcuk Kaan Tabakci

Job placement news:
I-Sen Chen will be taking up a new position as postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Philosophy at Sichuan University, China beginning in September.
T. Scott Dixon will be moving from his current position of Assistant Professor at Ashoka University to a new job as Assistant Professor at Lawrence University.

Undergraduate Philosophy Essay Contest
Winner: Ibrahim Dagher, "Numbers and Explanation: A Defense of Baker's Indispensability Argument," PHI 101 (Winter 2021)
Runner-up: Jacob Derin, "A Defense of An Independent Normative Constraint Against Intentional Deception," PHI 116 (Fall 2020)

Welcome to our newest faculty member, incoming Assistant Professor Alejandro Naranjo Sandoval. Alejandro specializes in Kant and other philosophers of the 17th and 18th centuries (especially Leibniz). He also has interests in philosophy of mind, social philosophy, logic and philosophy of logic, and philosophy of language.

Congratulations to Zoe Drayson and Rohan French on their promotions to Associate Professor of Philosophy with tenure!

2020-2021 UC Davis Philosophy Colloquium Series Speakers:

October 9: Robin Jeshion (USC) "What's Wrong With Slurs"
November 6: David Glick (UC Davis), "Quantum Mechanics Without Indeterminacy"
December 4: Gillian Russell (Australian Catholic), "Is There Any Such Thing As Feminist Logic?"
January 15: Johann Frick (Princeton), "Dilemmas, Luck, and the Two Faces of Morality"
March 5: Emily Parke (Auckland), "How to Stop Worrying About Invasive Species"
April 16: Lauren Ross (UC Irvine), "Cascade as a Causal Concept: The Diversity of Causal Structure in Science"
May 7: Dana Nelkin (UCSD), "Quality of Will and Control: Concepts and Conceptions"

And save the dates for next year's series:
October 1, 2021: Naomi Zack (CUNY Lehman College)
October 15, 2021: Shamik Dasgupta (UC Berkeley)
November 5, 2021: Jonathan Dorsey (UC Davis)
December 3, 2021: Porter Williams (USC)
March 4, 2022: Erich Reck (UC Riverside)
April 1, 2022: Michael McKenna (Arizona)
April 8, 2022: Wendy Salkin (Stanford)
May 6, 2022: William Ramsey (UNLV)
May 20, 2022: Renee Jorgensen Bolinger (Michigan)

Zoom in the Classroom

Some faculty got creative with their Zoom lectures. Like Cody Gilmore's recreation of Newton's bucket experiment for his "Philosophy of Space and Time" class.
...And here is a sweet screen shot of Zoe Drayson's "Introduction to Cognitive Science" class showering her with appreciation during the last meeting of the quarter.

The Philosophy of Biology Lab is co-run by Professors Jim Griesemer and Roberta Millstein.  We meet once a week during the regular school year (and sometimes occasionally in the summer) to read and discuss our works-in-progress, share ideas for new projects, make presentations and provide feedback on them, read topics of common interest, and engage with visiting scholars. One of the main goals of the Lab is to support graduate students in the various stages of their careers; to that end, topics related to presenting at conferences, publishing in journals, etc., are frequently discussed.  By now we are all pros at our weekly Zoom meetings.  We had a fun year, emphasizing grad student research-in-progress and readings related to their research.  We were lucky to have several regular attendees beyond Jim, Roberta, and our graduate students, including Alison McConwell, who was a postdoc with both Roberta and Jim.  We were also lucky to have several scholarly guest visitors, who gave us thought-provoking presentations: Curt Meine in the fall and Adrian Curry and Joyce Havstad in the winter.

Despite the pandemic keeping us from meeting in person, the Davis Chapter of MAP is still alive and well. Thanks to Max Parks and Lauren Viramontes for leading the group. In addition to meeting for social purposes, the Davis MAP folks have held meetings on the subjects of ‘Student Disabilities in the Time of Zoom’ and ‘How Do Hate Crimes Affect Student Well-Being?’ Max secured funding for UC Davis MAP for the next academic year, and we are looking forward to doing something special with it.


We are proud that our ethics working and reading group DaGERS (Davis Group in Ethics and Related Subjects) continued to thrive this year, with weekly Zoom meetings. We welcomed Dr. Hannah Tierney as a co-organizer of the group, and we focused many of our weekly readings on her area of specialty, blame and responsibility. Going remote has its advantages. We were able to invite several speakers to join us so we could discuss their work. Invitees included Jacob Barrett and Sarah Raskoff discussing their paper “Animal Suffering and Dietary Choices”; Robert Wallace, “Three Mistakes Concerning Gratitude and Responsibility”; Steve Campbell and Sven Nyholm, “Disability and the Goods of Life”; Kyle Fritz and Dan Miller, “A Standing Asymmetry Between Blame and Forgiveness”; Chris Howard, “Forever Fitting”; Theron Pummer, The Rules of Rescue; and Erin Beeghly, “Stereotyping as Discrimination.” We also workshopped many papers from our graduate students, recent grads, and lecturers. We are looking forward to conducting our working group in person next year.

Finally, here is some of what else we've done this year and works you can look out for in print:


David Copp
Hibernation turns out to be good for writing, if you don't fall asleep from all the excitement.  Thanks to Zoom, I gave talks about my current work at Leeds University and at Oxford University.  And I've published on a variety of topics:
“Just Too Different:  Normative Properties and Natural Properties.” Philosophical Studies 177 (2020):  263-286.
“Normative Pluralism and Skepticism about ‘Ought’ Simpliciter.”  In Ruth Chang and Kurt Sylvan, eds., Routledge Handbook of Practical Reason (New York:  Routledge, 2021).
“The Rule Worship and Idealization Objections Revisited and Resisted.”  In Mark Timmons, ed., Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics.  (Oxford:  Oxford University Press, 2020)
“Collective Obligations and the Point of Morality” In Deborah Tollefsen and Saba Barzagan-Forward, eds., Routledge Handbook of Collective Responsibility  (New York: Routledge, 2020).
“Pejorative Verbs and the Prospects for a Unified Theory of Slurs,” with Adam Sennet.  Analytic Philosophy, 61 (2020), pp.130-151.  
Zoe Drayson
In Fall 2021 we welcomed a new cohort of graduate students who still haven’t met each other (or their professors) in person. I’ve been so impressed by them in online grad seminars, and we’ve held regular Zoom social events this year, but I’m really looking forward to meeting them properly soon! Our undergraduates too have displayed great tolerance of their professors’ struggles to unmute themselves or navigate the class chat server, and I’ve learned much from online teaching that I can use in my classroom teaching. I’m particularly happy see my paper ‘Naturalism and the metaphysics of perception’ in print, in a new book focusing on methodological issues in philosophy of perception (Logue and Richardson (eds.) Purpose and Procedure in Philosophy of Perception, OUP: 2021). I first presented a version of this paper in 2017, and I build on these ideas in much of my current research on the metaphysics of cognitive science. I’m working on papers about mental fictionalism, implicit cognition, and Bayesian cognitive science – the latter with my graduate student Danielle Williams, who advanced to candidacy in December 2020. I had planned to go to Brazil in October 2020 to give the keynote talk at the 23rd Philosophy Colloquium at Unisinos. The event ended up being held online, but they’ve promised to invite me back in person when international travel is possible again! I spoke over Zoom at several events which were postponed from the previous year, and it’s been interesting to see how philosophers have tried to capture the conference experience online. I’ve continued to work this year on the Cognitive Science programme, which goes from strength to strength, and on a multi-campus UC project (funded by the Mellon Foundation) on making graduate admissions more inclusive and equitable.
Gerald Dworkin
Blogposts: “Do Mention It” posted on 3quarksdaily, listed on Leiter, discussed on Balkanization, a legal theory blog, and with David Copp: “Are we obligated to be vaccinated?” and “May we compel people to be vaccinated?” posted on 3quarksdaily.
Publications: “Autonomy and Lying,” Forthcoming in Routledge Handbook on Autonomy, ed. Carlson.
Rohan French
A distinctive highlight of teaching over the past year was co-teaching logic with my two cats frequently interrupting to give their opinions on logical inferentialism, or non-classical logic. In January I gave a talk as part of the ASL session on Logic and Philosophy at the Eastern Division of the APA, and in April gave talks in the Logic & Philosophy special session of the Pacific APA, as well as at the CUNY Logic & Metaphysics workshop. On the publications front in July 2020 I had a paper co-authored with David Ripley and Patrick Girard on “Classical Counterpossibles” accepted for publication at the Review of Symbolic logic.
Cody Gilmore
I took up the position of department chair and taught two courses this year: our proseminar for first-year graduate students, whose topic this time was the metaphysics of conception, pregnancy, and death, and an upper-division undergraduate course on the philosophy of space and time. These were my first experiences with remote instruction since 1999, when I taught an online course for a community college while I was in graduate school. I gave a Zoom-based presentation at the Central APA in February 2021 as part of an author-meets critics session on Scott Berman's book Platonism and the Objects of Science, and my chapter "What it is to die" was published in Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives (Routledge: 2021). Finally, in collaboration with Chief Investigator Antony Eagle (Adelaide) and Partner Investigator Shieva Kleinschmidt (USC), I started work as a Partner Investigator on the Australian Research Council Discovery Project Grant, "Everything in its Place: Location, Persistence, and Change".  
David Glick
Since joining the department in July, I’ve had a number of exciting teaching and research opportunities. On the teaching front, I was an ACCELERATE fellow in the summer which gave me a lot of good ideas to make my remote classes more inclusive and equitable. I put these lessons to good use in my classes this year and the students responded very well! On the research side, my paper “QBism and the Limits of Scientific Realism” was published in the European Journal for Philosophy of Science and my review of Scientific Realism and the Quantum (French & Saatsi, eds.) came out in the Journal for General Philosophy of Science. I was also fortunate to participate in some conferences and give some talks, albeit remotely. I presented my forthcoming work "Quantum Mechanics Without Indeterminacy” here at the UC Davis Philosophy Colloquium and "QBism and Limits of Scientific Realism" at the Caltech Philosophy of Physics Reading Group.
Paul Gomberg
After twelve years of work (on and off) I have a contract with Bloomsbury to publish my book Anti-Racism as Communism (in a two volume edition unfortunately). The final draft is due November 1; I am hoping it will appear sometime next year. My essay “Proletarian Democracy: Some Lessons of the Soviet Experience” will appear in The Politics and Ethics of Contemporary Work: Whither Work? edited by Keith Breen and Jean-Philippe Deranty (Routledge 2021) at “Against Patriotism, for Internationalism: A Marxist Critique of Patriotism” appeared in M. Sardoc (ed), Handbook of Patriotism published by Springer. I did a podcast last fall with Jeffrey Longhofer and Jerry Floersch of which has had one thousand listeners. Otherwise my life is pretty boring, but I enjoy it.

James Griesemer
I’ve had a productive year, on sabbatical after my second 5-year stint as Department Chair, despite the slightly sad isolation working entirely at home due to the Covid-19 pandemic. I’ve been very lucky to be able to do keep working (and avoid the virus) and I’m very grateful to UCDavis for its admirable response to the health emergency. I’m proud of the campus leadership and the whole community for rising to the challenge and helping make us all safer than we could have hoped for. I’m also grateful to Chair Cody Gilmore for taking the departmental reins so I could return to research and teaching. My first paper related to an NSF grant I was awarded with post-doc Carlos Andrés Barragán appeared in an edited volume: “A Data Journey Through Dataset-Centric Population Genomics.” In Data Journeys in the Sciences, (2020) ed. Sabina Leonelli, Niccolò Tempini , Springer, 145-167. Andrés and I also finished a 15,000 word manuscript we are about to submit for publication in a journal: “Re-situations of Scientific Knowledge: A Case Study of a Skirmish over Clusters vs Clines in Human Population Genomics.” These are the first of 8 papers we have planned and are writing (so far) from this project on the “movement” of scientific knowledge, e.g. between labs with very different research agendas. We presented some of our work, on “When do human genomic ancestry datasets become biomedical datasets?” at the annual Social Studies of Science Society meeting that was supposed to take place in Prague, Czech Republic, but happened via Zoom instead. We presented work toward another paper in the series at a workshop at the University of Pittsburgh: “Ancestry: Evidence, Inference, and Identity” in January 2021: “The re-situation of genomic data and metadata: human admixture as algorithm-and-modeling practices.” Another essay is in the works with Andrés and UCD biology colleagues for a volume being edited by UCD STS (Emily Klancher Merchant) and Religious Studies (Megan O’Keefe) faculty. Unfortunately, the pandemic undermined our plans for Andrés to conduct in-person interviews of scientists for our project, but we’re managing to get good results anyway. My other major project this year is to finish writing a book, Reproduction in the Evolutionary Process. I’m making steady progress on that, with a detour into studying the genome organization of SARS-CoV-2 and virus evolution. A paper related to the book project is now in press: “Levels, Perspectives and Thickets: Toward an Ontology of Complex Scaffolded Living Systems.” In Levels of Organization in the Biological Sciences, eds. Daniel S. Brooks, James DiFrisco, and William C. Wimsatt. (August 2021, MIT Press, Vienna Series in Theoretical Biology. I also submitted a personal reflection on the philosopher Paul K. Feyerabend for a volume celebrating the centennial of his birth (in 1924). I was an undergraduate student in one of Feyerabend’s classes at Berkeley and it was a pivotal experience in my education. Finally, I was interviewed in December 2020 by National Geographic for a story on the Hungarian the
oretical biologist, Tibor Gánti, about whom I have written extensively. You can find the story here:, I was honored to be elected as a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of KLI, An Independent Center of Advanced Studies in the Life and Sustainability Sciences in Austria (

Thor Harris
Over the last year I have had the pleasure of guiding a number of independent studies: Dexin Li worked on the wrongness of killing; Siling Lu worked on the connections between compassion and “non-self” (anatman), drawing upon the ethics of Hume and the Pali Canon; Sui Tang Alex Lee worked on the advantages and disadvantages of dying, incorporating arguments from Heidegger, Lucretius, and Zhuangzi; Shirley Wang worked on the preconditions of a worthwhile life; Brenden Boyatt worked on the inherent injustice of the nation-state, and this current term Samuel Robert Carl Niederholzer is writing on Nietzsche’s bad conscience, and Xueyong Zhang is developing an ethics of suicide for the digital age. I am also delighted to be assembling UC Davis’s first APPE Ethics Bowl team in preparation for the Regional Ethics Bowl next quarter. As for publications, my chapter in One Corner of the Square: Essays on the Philosophy of Roger T. Ames (University of Hawaii Press) appeared in print this year; I submitted “Confucius and the Confederacy” to Philosophy East and West; and I am currently revising my manuscript on the contemporary significance of the Confucian philosophy of exemplary persons, Living Ethics, for SUNY Press.
Lel Jones
My first year at UC Davis has been a test of virtual endurance! The highlights of my academic year have been receiving my first conference acceptances at the graduate level including the Tufts-Brandeis MAP conference and the Philosophers for Sustainability conference on Anti-Racism and the Climate Crisis. I am also very excited about my acceptance as a PI in the X-phi and Feminist Philosophy workshop facilitated by CUNY. All three of these opportunities would not have been possible without the amazing support I have received from faculty!
Mandy Kamangar
I commented on a paper in the APA Eastern Division Meeting, held January 4-7, 2021 via Zoom.  The paper was a Colloquium paper, by Jim Hutchinson, titled  “Frege’s Radical Anti-Psychologism". 
Elaine Landry
Well, it’s been an interesting year for us all, but we survived-well!! I admit to having been terrified to Zoom teach but, after discovering Notability (thanks Rohan!), it turned into both a successful and surprisingly pleasurable experience. Rohan and I, with the generous support of the Dean’s Office, and together with several brave graduate students (Kaan, Ryan, Shannon, and Chanwoo) took on the task of revamping both of our logic courses (PHI12 and PHI112) so that the textbook is open source and the assignments and exams are online graded by Let’s just say it was a steep learning experience teaching these courses with the new features, and one also bravely shared by Jonathan Dorsey and David Glick! Also, together with Tina, Alyssa and our new colleague Alejandro (again, welcome!), and graduate students Lel, Max and Natasha, I founded the Diversity Working Group (DWG), with the aim of implementing the diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) goals as set out in the University’s DEI Strategic Vision. In the midst of all the crazy, I was finally able to find time to start working on my As-if-ist approach to the philosophy of mathematics. I gave my first talk on this topic at the Annual Lecture Series at the Center for Philosophy of Science at the University of Pittsburgh. I will also be giving versions of this talk via Zoom as a Keynote speaker at the POMSIGMAA MathFest meeting of the Mathematical Association of America and also at the Category Theory and the Philosophy of Science Conference at LMU in Munich. Finally, I am looking to celebrate having successfully survived the year of Covid by enjoying a year-long sabbatical, during which I hope to complete my book As If Mathematics Were True: Mathematics, Metaphysics and Method. Fin.

Hanti Lin
Over the past few years I have been pursuing a book project on Hume's problem of induction and the epistemology of scientific inference, working both on (i) a philosophical foundation with a tradition that can be traced back to Peirce and Reichenbach and (ii) a mathematical foundation that requires me to prove some new theorems (which I wish could have been available in statistics or machine learning). In this academic year, I gave a philosophy talk (a) at the Eastern APA and had a philosophy paper (b) accepted for presentation at the PSA (which was postponed due to the pandemic). I also presented a new theorem (c) at one of the largest conferences for machine learning, statistics, and computer science, called NeurIPS, which you can imagine to be the counterpart of APA in machine learning.
Roberta Millstein
As I think many students and faculty have found, it has been difficult be motivated to do research during the pandemic.   Still, I have continued to chip away at my book in progress, tentatively titled The Land Is Our Community: A Land Ethic for the New Millennium, a new interpretation and defense of Aldo Leopold’s land ethic that incorporates both history and philosophy of biology approaches as well as environmental ethics.  The upcoming July meeting of the International Society for the History, Philosophy, and Social Studies of Biology (ISHPSSB) has helped to rekindle my enthusiasm for the project, where I will give a paper entitled “Aldo Leopold and the Biodiversity-Stability Connection.”  Speaking of ISHPSSB, I have been program co-chair for the aforementioned conference this year.  Originally it was supposed to be in Milwaukee, but late in the fall we decided to shift plans and retool for an online global synchronous conference, which like many such commitments has turned out to be much more time-consuming and challenging than I think any of us anticipated. Still I think we have an exciting program and a number of us from UCD will be presenting.  As for online teaching, that went as well as can be expected, but I was pleased with my winter Environmental Ethics seminar focusing on indigenous perspectives on environmental issues (with some Leopold as well). The openness that students displayed towards the topics tells me that the future of philosophy is in good hands – which is good for me to see, as I will be retiring (albeit not disappearing from the department entirely) on July 1 of this year.
Alyssa Ney
It has been rough being away from students and colleagues this pandemic year, but it is nice to be able to participate in many virtual workshops around the world without having to leave California. The highlights of my teaching year were my first time offering an upper division undergraduate philosophy of physics course on foundational issues in quantum theory and my Fall seminar on the metaphysics of race and gender. In September, I gave a talk, “From Quantum Entanglement to Spatiotemporal Distance,” in the Harvard Foundations of Physics series. In terms of publications, I was very happy that my book, The World in the Wave Function, finally came out with Oxford University Press. There was an Author-Meets-Critics session on the book at the Pacific Division APA meeting in April and there will be another next month at the University of Geneva. I also gave talks on the book in the Oxford Philosophy of Physics series, a workshop in Grenoble, and at the University of Lisbon. Other publications that appeared in print this year are: “Finding the World in the Wave Function,” Synthese (October 2020), “The Fundamentality of Physics: Completeness or Maximality?” Oxford Studies in Metaphysics (December 2020), and “Separability, Locality, and Higher Dimensions in Quantum Mechanics,” in Current Controversies in Philosophy of Science (Routledge 2021).
Max Parks
My publication in the Journal of Cognition and Neuroethics from 2019 was updated to be consistent with my preferred name :) One of the editors kindly reached out and offered to do so without me asking! I also presented three papers at different conferences during this academic year: "Animal Cognition and the Cognitive Phenomenology Debate", "How Should We Talk about Gender?", and "Art and Public Philosophy".
Tristan Rogers
For obvious reasons, it was bittersweet to begin teaching at UCD this past academic year. I immensely enjoyed the high caliber of students, but it was sad to seldomly set foot on campus and miss out entirely on the usual departmental events. On the other hand, the lack of a commute meant more time at home with my wife and daughter. The highlight of my teaching year was a new Philosophy of Law course that I developed focused on the Hart/Devlin debate about the relationship between law and morality. I also continued to develop my History of Ethics course focused on the differences between ancient and modern ethics. In November, my first book, The Authority of Virtue: Institutions and Character in the Good Society, was published by Routledge. Some of this work I was to present at a conference on Virtue and Politics at Concordia University in March 2020, which was unfortunately one of the early casualties of pandemic travel disruptions. Some of the papers that were to be presented will be published in a special issue of The Journal of Value Inquiry. After my book was released, I was fortunate to write two invited articles. The first, “Jordan Peterson and Ancient Virtue Ethics,” will appear in an edited volume tentatively titled Jordan Peterson: Critical Responses. The second, “Can’t We Be Friends? Civic Friendship in an Age of Incivility,” will appear in The Virtues: Civility (Oxford University Press). In March 2021, I presented the latter to the University of Oklahoma’s “Virtue Forum,” hosted by Nancy Snow. Lastly, I recently signed a contract for my next book titled Conservatism Past and Present: A Philosophical Introduction (Routledge, expected 2023). 
Tina Rulli
Like everyone else, my plans for this year were upended. I had to cancel several talks and presentations, but I'm hopeful that they will be rescheduled in the upcoming year. Despite that, a few things happened. I gave a virtual talk on my paper "Positive Symmetry in Our Procreative Reasons" at the University of Utah in February. I'm focusing some of my research and teaching on practical issues in ethics and justice. I contributed a blog post with my co-author David Wendler (NIH Bioethics), "Covid-19: The Duty to Take Reasonable Precautions Against Infection," at the Journal of Medical Ethics Blog. I gave a talk on "Racism and Medicine" at the JVMC, a UC Davis student-run clinic in Sacramento. And I started a course proposal for a class on the Philosophy of Race for the 2022-23 academic year. I was an active member of an interdisciplinary research group DNA & Society, which will inform my upcoming research on race and genomics. I recently accepted a position as an Associate Editor at the Journal of Applied Philosophy. My graduate seminar this spring was on Anti-Natalism and Population Ethics. I’m preparing a chapter for the Handbook in Normative Ethics (Oxford UP), which I’m also co-editing, on the moral status of potential people. I'm very much looking forward to getting back to in-person teaching next year.
Adam Sennet
This past year provided, for me, a sort of sneak peek of a possible future for UC Davis (and perhaps most universities) and I can’t say that I’m in love with it. I was very grateful to my students, both graduate and undergraduate, for adapting as best they could and to my colleagues for keeping group activities going, including departmental talks and gatherings. In that vein, I look forward to un-pausing the department’s annual conferences (known as ‘DEX’) and enjoying time appreciating the subtle things that in-person interactions provide. In other news, this year I revamped my sprawling Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy entry, published a paper on substitution arguments in Linguistic Sciences (with Justina Dias Legaspe) and completed a paper on Sobel Sequences (with Tyrus Fisher), currently under review. I attended Masoud Jasbi’s excellent linguistic lab (‘l3lb’) and enjoyed learning to play flamenco guitar. 
Jan Szaif
During this past year, I continued to work on two distinct research projects, one relating to the theory of false pleasures in Plato’s dialogue Philebus, the other (a book project) about the role of the concepts of truth and falsehood in Aristotle’s Metaphysics. As one current outcome of my work, I would highlight an essay on false pleasures in Plato’s Philebus that is forthcoming in the Plato-Journal. Ancient theories of pleasure were also the topic of my graduate seminar this past Spring quarter.—A most unusual and difficult academic year is coming to an end. As Faculty Adviser for our undergraduate students, and also through the courses I taught, I became all too aware of the problems that our students had to face. Let’s congratulate the students that successfully mastered the challenges of studying under conditions of remote instruction and social distancing. But let’s also not forget about those who ran into practical and emotional difficulties that prevented them from successfully completing their courses, or delayed their progress. The new academic year will, hopefully, offer better conditions for all of them.
Hannah Tierney
Though this was a challenging year to join a new department, everyone at UC Davis has been so welcoming and I’ve really enjoyed getting to (virtually) know my new colleagues. This year, I taught a graduate seminar on blame, an upper division undergraduate course on problems in normative ethics, and a special topics course on moral psychology, all of which were incredibly rewarding thanks to the hard work and perseverance of the students. I also enjoyed attending virtual conferences and giving online talks, including “Don’t Burst My Blame Bubble” and “Where There’s Smoke, There Are Conspiracy Theories.” In terms of publications, “Expanding Moral Understanding” came out in print in the Australasian Philosophical Review (March 2021) and “Hypercrisy and Standing to Self-Blame” was made available online as an advance article at Analysis (March 2021). I was also happy to learn that my paper “Quality of Reasons and Degrees of Moral Responsibility” was shortlisted for the Annette Baier Prize.

And looking forward to a new year ahead...
Welcome to our 6 incoming graduate students for Fall 2021!
Katelyn Antilla
Taryn Christiansen
Ethan Higginbotham
Francisco Martinez Avina
Natalie McCosker
Zhexi Zhang 
Copyright © 2021 UC Davis Philosophy, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
UC Davis Department of Philosophy · One Shields Avenue · Davis, Ca 95616 · USA

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp