Research

Are All Reasons Causes?

In this paper, I revisit the Davidsonian thesis that all reasons are causes. Drawing on a better taxonomy of reasons than the one Davidson provides, I argue that this thesis is either indefensible or uninteresting.

Reasons and Factive Emotions

In this paper, I present and explore some ideas about how factive emotional states and factive perceptual states each relate to knowledge and reasons. This discussion will shed light on the so-called ‘perceptual model’ of the emotions.

Emotions, Evidence, and Safety

In this paper, I explore two ways that emotions can facilitate knowledge. First, I present and defend a strong prima facie case for the idea that emotions can play an evidential role with respect to belief formation. Second, I explore some ways that the emotions can be knowledge-conducive without being evidential. In this connection, I outline the safety conception of knowledge and point to some relevant research that strongly suggests there are many cases where the emotions may enhance the safety of various kinds of belief.

Doxastic Cognitivism: An Anti-Intellectualist Theory of Emotion

Cognitivism about the emotions is often presented as the view that emotions are evaluative judgments. In this paper, I present and explore an alternative to judgment-based cognitivist approaches that is not well-represented in the literature—an approach that I shall call, Doxastic Cognitivism. Doxastic Cognitivism combines an anti-intellectualist view of belief with the thesis that emotions involve evaluative beliefs.

Necessitism and Concreteness

Necessitism is the view that necessarily everything is necessarily identical to something. In Modal Logic as Metaphysics, (2013) Timothy Williamson defends necessitism and uses concreteness as a tool for drawing some intuitive distinctions. I am not interested in challenging the idea that theorists (especially Williamson) can make significant progress on the topic of necessitism without worrying too much about what concreteness amounts to. But it may be immodest for theorists not to worry at all. In this essay, I shall explore various answers to the question, ‘What is it to be concrete?’ in the context of a general necessitist framework.

Conditional Emotions

Conditionals that embed factive emotives in the consequent seem to present a counterexample to modus ponens. In this essay, I present the puzzle and propose a solution—one that connects in interesting ways to the role of emotion in suppositional reasoning and in our cognitive lives more generally. 

Recognition

Philosophers often use the verb ‘recognize’ in philosophical discourse but there has been surprisingly little discussion of the phenomenon of recognition itself.  The purpose of this paper is to remedy this gap.

Pornography and Accommodation

draft available soon

 

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