I was awarded my PhD in September 2021 by the University of Leeds after successfully defending my thesis, “A structuralist approach to animalism”. I was supervised by Ellen Clarke, Helen Steward, and Steven French. My viva examiners were Gregory Radick (internal) and Eric Olson (external). Prior to that, I received my master’s degree in philosophy from the University of Kansas in 2016. My MA thesis was entitled “Organisms and the extended self: a re-evaluation” and was supervised by Armin Schulz. I received my bachelor’s degree in philosophy (with a minor in cognitive science) from Hartwick College in 2014.
My main areas of research concern the philosophy of science (esp. biology), metaphysics (esp. personal identity), and death. I’m also interested in ethics (esp. medical ethics/bioethics) and philosophy of mind and cognition. Broadly speaking, I’m interested in how various theories of identity (and metaphysics more broadly) affect our understanding of the human condition as well as practical human concerns and practices (e.g., death, science, ethics, and medicine.)
My PhD thesis was on animalism (i.e. the view that we are numerically identical to human animals rather than, say, “Lockean persons” or “souls”). In particular, I applied an eliminativist version of Ontic Structural Realism to metaphysical problems surrounding biological individuality. I then demonstrated how approaching biological individuality in this way can help solve problems that arise in animalist conceptions of identity. As such, I promoted a naturalised version of animalism that is grounded in biology and the philosophy of biology (or, more generally, in science/philosophy of science).
I’m currently a lecturer at my alma mater–Hartwick College.
When I’m not teaching or researching, I enjoy running/playing/and watching Dungeons and Dragons (is it Thursday, yet?), drinking too much coffee whilst reading and writing fiction, and spending time with my wife and son.