PhD (University of Western Australia)
University of California, San Diego
9500 Gilman Drive # 0119
La Jolla, CA 92093-0119
I am an assistant teaching professor in the philosophy department at the University of California, San Diego. This site provides information about my teaching and research, which generally focus on applied ethics, political philosophy and a bit of ethics.
In 2018 I am teaching the following classes:
Phil 27 (Ethics and Society). This offering of the class is loosely organized around the theme of justice. It examines topics related to distributive justice, immigration and culture, gender and marriage, and other topics.
Phil 115 (Philosophican Methods Seminar). The Seminar will focus on questions of identity broadly construed. Our assigned text are Reasons and Persons (1984), by Derek Parfit, Reading Parfit (1997), Jonathan Dancy (ed.) and David Benatar’s Better Never to Have Been: The Harm of Coming into Existence (2006).
Phil 13 (Intro to Philosophy: Ethics). The class will introduce students to moral theories such as utilitarianism, deontology, the divine commmand theory, egoism and virtue ethics.
Phil 285 (Seminar on Special Topics: Global Justice).
This graduate seminar is co-taught with my colleague Richard Arneson. Topics are still tentative, but are likely to include immigration, international economic justice, colonialism and secession.
I am organizing a global seminar to be taught in Paris, France. Students who attend will take two UCSD classes: Phil 28GS (Ethics and Society II) and Phil 164GS (Technology and Human Values). Phil 28GS will takes the form of a role-playing game. Students acting in character will make speeches, hatch plots and form alliances to achieve shared goals such as passing a bill in a simulated assembly. Our setting will be 1791 Paris, during the early years of the French Revolution. The role-playing method we will use is Reacting to the Past. Further information about Reacting games is available at reacting.barnard.edu. The particular game we will play is Rousseau, Burke and Revolution in France 1791. More information about the global seminar is available here.
I am always happy to answer questions from students about any of the above classes.
In 2011 I published a book about refugees. It incorporates political philosophy alongside historical and interview material to present a new framework for enforcing the rights of refugees. Hannah Arendt and other critics have often taken the situation of refugees to show that human rights are inevitably undermined by national sovereignty. Against this view, and despite the disappointing refugee record of most states, I try to show how asylum-seekers could make enforceable rights-claims against sovereign states.
My most recent paper appears in Social Theory and Practice and concerns the ethics of immigration control. All of my papers are available for download at my Social Science Research Network page. Currently I am finishing a book about the moral status of animals.