UMN Philosophy Department

Official Facebook Account of the Philosophy Department at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.

Evolution and Development 02/15/2024

Professor Alan Love has a new Cambridge Element out now! "Evolution and Development: Conceptual Issues" is an Open Access introduction to Evo-Devo. Check it out here:

Here's a quick summary of the book:
The intersection of development and evolution has always harbored conceptual issues, but many of these are on display in contemporary evolutionary developmental biology (evo-devo). These issues include: (1) the precise constitution of evo-devo, with its focus on both the evolution of development and the developmental basis of evolution, and how it fits within evolutionary theory; (2) the nature of evo-devo model systems that comprise the material of comparative and experimental research; (3) the puzzle of how to understand the widely used notion of 'conserved mechanisms'; (4) the definition of evolutionary novelties and expectations for how to explain them; and (5) the demand of interdisciplinary collaboration that derives from investigating complex phenomena at key moments in the history of life, such as the fin-limb transition. This Element treats these conceptual issues with close attention to both empirical detail and scientific practice to offer new perspectives on evolution and development.

Evolution and Development Cambridge Core - Philosophy of Science - Evolution and Development

Alan Love places “evo-devo” front and center 06/03/2021

Alan Love places “evo-devo” front and center Established in 1987, the Winton Chair in the Liberal Arts was designed to encourage innovative, distinctive research or creative work that “questions established patterns of thought.” As the newest Winton Chair, Professor of Philosophy Alan Love fulfills that objective and more.

Lauren Wilson awarded Yudof fellowship 02/02/2021

Lauren Wilson awarded Yudof fellowship We are delighted to announce that Philosophy PhD candidate and MCPS graduate student fellow, Lauren Wilson, has been awarded one of the Yudof fellowships for the 2021-2022 academic year.

Ethics Bowl Teaches Teens Respectful Debate 08/22/2020

Learn all the Minnesota Regional Ethics Bowl, spearheaded by Professor Cat Saint-Croix!

Ethics Bowl Teaches Teens Respectful Debate “Is it okay to walk your pet through a cemetery?” Developed alongside the philosophy department by new assistant professor Dr. Cat Saint-Croix, the High School Regional Ethics Bowl helps teens develop positions on ethical topics and adapt them through thoughtful conversations.

Evaluating risk and medical treatment in the time of coronavirus 05/08/2020

Evaluating risk and medical treatment in the time of coronavirus MCPS Director Alan C, Love (Philosophy) and Steven D. Stovitz (Family Medicine and Community Health) have a commentary published in the Los Angeles Times (May 7, 2020) on the evaluation of risk and inherent uncertainties in diagnosis and treatment.


Dear UofM Philosophy Alumni:

Professor Joe Owens is retiring from the Philosophy Department, after 40 years of service, this spring. We had planned to have a small celebration, but the pandemic has put all such events on hold, indefinitely. To commemorate his retirement, and to show our appreciation for Joe's decades of teaching and collegiality, we are collecting cards and notes from colleagues and former students. If you would like to, please send a card or note to the Philosophy Department OR email a message to Prof. Tiberius (she'll print them out, put them together, and take them to Joe). Even if you have a short message, Joe would really appreciate it. He's self-isolating, not able to see his sons, family, or new grandchild, in person, which makes this an even more important moment to show our appreciation.

Please address USPS mail to:
Joe Owens c/o Valerie Tiberius
Department of Philosophy
University of Minnesota
831 Heller Hall
271 19th Ave. South
Minneapolis, MN 55455

For email:
please put "Joe Owens" in the subject line and send to

Thank you so very much!

Photos from College of Liberal Arts | University of Minnesota's post 02/14/2020

Congratulations to Philosophy Professor Samuel Fletcher, who will be a McKnight Land Grant Professor 2020–2022!! Huzzah!


What do history of science and philosophy of science have to say to one another? In his newly published article, "History and Philosophy of Science After the Practice-Turn," published in the preeminent journal for the area, Studies in History and Philosophy of Science, PhD candidate Max Dresow describes a new approach for conceptualizing the relation between the two disciplines.

Check it out! It's a great read!

Congratulations, Max!

High School Ethics Bowl season has begun! | Minnesota Ethics Bowl 02/09/2020

High School Ethics Bowl season has begun! | Minnesota Ethics Bowl The University of Minnesota Philosophy Department will be hosting the first-ever Minnesota Ethics Bowl this academic year. Ethics Bowl competitions provide a supportive, respectful environment that prepares high school students for the intellectual rigors of a college education while giving them the...

Minorities and Philosophy at UMN 01/23/2020

How is philosophy tackling its long struggle to include diverse thinkers? UMN's new chapter of Minorities and Philosophy, lead by students like Grace Joy Cebrero, engages philosophy students in conversations about creating opportunities for students from underrepresented backgrounds.

Minorities and Philosophy at UMN University disciplines have historically lacked diversity, and philosophy has been slower than most to catch up. With the help of graduate students like Grace Cebrero, Minorities and Philosophy (MAP) creates a space for students of underrepresented backgrounds to address topics surrounding diversity...

Meet Tamara Fakhoury: Philosopher, Artist, Educator 01/23/2020

Welcome Tamara Fakhoury, a new addition to the Department of Philosophy! Fakhoury focuses her work on the theme of quiet resistance, or how people pursue their passions despite oppressive conventions.

Meet Tamara Fakhoury: Philosopher, Artist, Educator “How do I know if what I see is real?” “What makes an action good?” Big questions like these inspired new Department of Philosophy Assistant Professor Tamara Fakhoury to pursue a career in philosophy from her home in Lebanon to classrooms at the University of Minnesota. Fakhoury discusses ho...


Join us for Facts & Fakes: Philosophers on the Search for Truth
October 17, 2019, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
Surly Brewing Co., 520 Malcolm Ave. SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

Fake news, misinformation, and truthiness abound! How do we know what to think? What sources should we believe? Whom should we trust? And does it really matter? At this inaugural May Brodbeck Outreach event, supported by the generous sponsorship of Don Brownstein ('69), we'll explore these questions and more. Join us for some brief presentations from philosophy faculty, followed by lively round table discussions on the search for truth in the 21st century. Drinks and hearty appetizers provided.

This event is free, but registration is required and space is limited. RSVP at:

Yoshinari Yoshida receives Baruch Spinoza travel award 06/12/2019

Philosophy graduate student Yoshinari Yoshida received the Baruch Spinoza travel award from the Minnesota Center for Philosophy of Science to present his paper, "Epistemic Values, Trade-offs, and Multiple Models Juxtaposition," at the 2019 ISHPSSB meeting in Oslo! Congratulations, Yoshi!

Yoshinari Yoshida receives Baruch Spinoza travel award Philosophy graduate student and MCPS graduate student fellow, Yoshinari Yoshida, has been selected to receive the 2019 Baruch Spinoza travel award.

The Humanities: Now With 50 Percent Fewer Humans 05/25/2019

On the enduring worth of the humanities. CLA Associate Dean of Undergraduate Education, Ascan Koerner, is interviewed in the article and talks about current efforts to promote the liberal arts.

The Humanities: Now With 50 Percent Fewer Humans How did English and history majors become an endangered species?

Women in Philosophy: Who Cares About Women in the History of Philosophy? 05/24/2019

Great post by Professor Sarah Tyson about the exclusion of women from the philosophical canon. Looking forward to reading Professor Tyson's book, Where Are the Women (Columbia UP 2018) mentioned in the article!

Women in Philosophy: Who Cares About Women in the History of Philosophy? by Sarah Tyson The place of women in the history of philosophy tends to be most interesting to people who already have an interest in feminist philosophy. This is not universally the case. Mary W…

Cavendish and the Tapestry of Early Modern Philosophy 05/16/2019

Professor Bennett McNulty researches Margaret Cavendish's philosophy of nature. Cavendish was a prominent and controversial critic of the so-called 'scientific revolution.' McNulty works on clarifying her accounts of the order and infinitude of nature. (Part 3 of a series on work in the department on neglected figures and expanding the philosophical canon)

Cavendish and the Tapestry of Early Modern Philosophy We’ve come to understand that philosophy as a discipline is the product of a few great minds. Much of the modern canon, however, overlooks those thinkers that have stitched together the dialogue. Bennett McNulty dives into this issue by presenting the canon a little differently.

Conway and Locke on Personhood 05/15/2019

Heather Johnson, Philosophy PhD student, is doing fascinating work on Anne Conway's theories of creation and personhood, especially by comparing her views with those of John Locke. Learn all about her research at the link! (Part 2 of a series on work in the department on neglected figures and expanding the philosophical canon)

Conway and Locke on Personhood Philosophers John Locke and Anne Finch Conway don’t exactly agree on the answers to some essential philosophical questions: What is a person? How do persons remain the same over time? PhD candidate Heather Johnson investigates these questions and more by studying the similarities and differences i...

Conway, Ontology, and the Early Modern Canon 05/14/2019

Read about Professor Jessica Gordon-Roth's research on early modern philosopher, Anne Finch Conway, and her work expanding the early modern canon. Great introduction to Professor Gordon-Roth's research and Conway's fascinating theory of ontology! (Part 1 of a series on work in the department on neglected figures and expanding the philosophical canon)

Conway, Ontology, and the Early Modern Canon Philosophy Professor Jessica Gordon-Roth analyzes the work of 17th-century philosopher Anne Finch Conway, overlooked in part because of her gender. How does her perspective differ from other major thinkers of the time period, like Hobbes and Descartes?


We are so excited to announce that Cat Saint-Croix, 2018–2020 President's Postdoctoral Fellow here at the U, will be joining the department as a tenure-track assistant professor in Fall 2020!

Cat received her doctorate in philosophy from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Her main areas of research are epistemology, logic, and feminist philosophy. She is particularly interested in the intersections of these fields, with an eye toward understanding how the tools and approaches they provide might illuminate one another. Cat’s current research focuses on the role of idealizations in formal epistemology. She is especially interested in the way that idealizations about the social contexts in which we carry out our epistemic practices ought to affect the nature and status of norms developed on the basis of those idealizations. Outside of philosophy, Cat spends her time rock climbing and playing her (currently) 11th level druid in Dungeons & Dragons.


We are ecstatic to announce that Tamara Fakhoury will be joining the department as a tenure-track assistant professor this Fall!

Tamara works in Ethics and Feminist philosophy. Prior to UMN, she completed her PhD at the University of North Carolina and her BA at the American University of Beirut. In her current project, she investigates the distinctive value of personal resistance to oppression, which she calls “quiet resistance”. Quiet resistance is the defiant pursuit of what one cares about in spite of oppressive forces forbidding it. Fakhoury argues that this kind of personal resistance can exhibit courage and self-respect, and has value independently of its social or political impact. Tamara is especially interested in moral and political issues relevant to Arab and Muslim women and aspires to do philosophical work that is helpful for answering the practical questions we face in living our lives. Growing up in Beirut, she was surrounded by amazing archaeological sites, which she explored in the style of Indiana Jones. In college, she organized a philosophy department field trip to read Plato’s Symposium amidst the ruins of the ancient city of Byblos (ruled by numerous civilizations, including the Greeks under Alexander the Great in 332BC). Today, among other subjects, she loves to teach Ancient Philosophy. When she’s not philosophizing, Tamara spends her time painting and watching films. For more, see her personal webpage: and her art page:

The Varied Careers of Philosophy Majors - Daily Nous 05/13/2019

Learn all about the many things that you can do with a philosophy degree! What a great project!

The Varied Careers of Philosophy Majors - Daily Nous A philosophy professor has put together a book featuring brief essays by thirty people who majored in philosophy at his school and who went on to pursue a wide range of careers. David Boersema, who in 2016 retired as Distinguished University Professor and Douglas C. Strain Chair of Natural Philosoph...

Alumni Profile: Jordan Kleist 05/10/2019

Philosophy Alumnus (and future UChicago Law School student) Jordan Kleist talks about his experiences as a major in philosophy at the U and what he got out of them.

Alumni Profile: Jordan Kleist Research has shown that year after year, philosophy is one of the best majors for admission to law school. Just ask graduating senior Jordan Kleist, who will be heading to one of the most prestigious law schools in the country this fall.

How Philosophers Interrogate the Rules of Science 05/09/2019

Philosophers in the UMN Philosophy Department are doing thought-provoking work on the 'replication crisis' in science. Read all about their research here!

How Philosophers Interrogate the Rules of Science People sometimes think that philosophy is opposed to science. But scrutinizing scientific methodology and investigating what it takes for an idea to become scientific fact are important topics for the contemporary philosopher. And this philosophical interrogation can have an unexpected outcome—hel...

Kant: A Polymath of Modern Thought 05/08/2019

Check out the fantastic work being done on Kant's philosophy in the UMN Philosophy Department!

Kant: A Polymath of Modern Thought Academics have said that all philosophy created in the last 200 years is a response to Immanuel Kant. The influence of his work, however, has spread much further than the realm of philosophy. Today, chemists and politicians alike grapple with the ideas of this poor Prussian boy and how his century-o...

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