• Community Radio in Political Theory and Development Practice
    Journal of Development and Communication Studies 2 (2-3). 2013.
    While to political theorists in the United States ‘community radio’ may seem a quaint holdover of the democratization movements of the 1960s, community radio has been an important tool in development contexts for decades. In this paper I investigate how community radio is conceptualized within and outside of the development frame, as a solution to development problems, as part of development projects communication strategy, and as a tool for increasing democratic political participation in devel…Read more
  • The Subject of History: Historical Subjectivity and Historical Science
    Journal of the Philosophy of History 7 (2): 205-229. 2013.
    In this paper, I show how the phenomenological and hermeneutic traditions and method converge on their treatment of the historical subject. Thinkers from both traditions claim that subjectivity is shaped by a historical worldview. Each tradition provides an account of how these worldviews are shaped, and thus how essentially historical subjective experience is molded. I argue that both traditions, although offering helpful ways of understanding the way history shapes subjectivity, go too far in …Read more
  • Spinoza’s Hobbesian Naturalism and Its Promise for a Feminist Theory of Power
    Revista Conatus - Filosofia de Spinoza 7 (13): 11-23. 2013.
    This paper examines recent feminist work on Spinoza and identifies the elements of Spinoza’s philosophy that have been seen as promising for feminist naturalism. I argue that the elements of Spinoza’s work that feminist theorists have found so promising are precisely those concepts he derives from Hobbes. I argue that the misunderstanding of Hobbes as architect of the egoist model of human nature has effaced his contribution to Spinoza’s more praised conception of the human individual. Despite m…Read more
  • Affective Disorders of the State
    Journal of East-West Thought 3 (2): 97-120. 2013.
    The problems of contemporary states are in large part “affective disorders”; they are failures of states to properly understand and coordinate the emotions of the individuals within and in some instances outside the state. By excluding, imprisoning, and marginalizing members of their societies, states create internal enemies who ultimately enervate their own power and the possibility of peace and freedom within the state. Spinoza’s political theory, based on the notion that the best forms of sta…Read more
  • Diversity and Felicity: Hobbes’s Science of Human Flourishing
    Science Et Esprit 68 (1): 35-47. 2016.
    We do not generally take the Hobbesian project to be one that encourages human flourishing. I will argue that it is; indeed, I will propose that Hobbes attempts the first modern project to provide for the possibility of the diversity of human flourishing in the civil state. To do so, I will draw on the recent work of Donald Rutherford, who takes Hobbes to be a eudaimonist in the Aristotelian tradition.
  • Can we ever justly critique the norms and practices of another culture? When activists or policy-makers decide that one culture’s traditional practice is harmful and needs to be eradicated, does it matter whether they are members of that culture? Given the history of imperialism, many argue that any critique of another culture’s practices must be internal. Others argue that we can appeal to a universal standard of human wellbeing to determine whether or not a particular practice is legitimate or…Read more
  • Idea and ontology. An essay in early modern metaphysics of ideas (review)
    Journal of the History of Philosophy 49 (1): 123-124. 2011.
    "Based on a true story: the early modern tale." In Idea and Ontology, Marc Hight argues that the story we have been told about early modern philosophy is false. What Hight calls the "early modern tale" tells us that beginning with Descartes and ending with Berkeley, metaphysics began its slide into the historical dustbin, replaced by epistemology as first philosophy. The categories of medieval metaphysics, substance and mode, so the story goes, could no longer serve the needs of the moderns, spe…Read more
  • Multitude
    In Andre Santos Campos (ed.), Spinoza: Basic Concepts, Imprint Academic. pp. 129-141. 2015.
    Spinoza’s ‘multitude’, while a key concept of his political philosophy, allows us to better understand Spinoza’s work both in its historical context and as a systematic unity. In this piece, I will propose that we understand Spinoza’s concept of the ‘multitude’ in the context of the development of his political thought, in particular his reading and interpretation of Thomas Hobbes, for whom ‘multitude’ was indeed a technical term. I will show that Spinoza develops his own notion of multitude as …Read more
  • Far from his ‘rationalist’ image, Spinoza recognizes that we do not emerge from the ground as fully formed rational agents. We are born and develop in social worlds, where our affects, values and conceptions of the world are formed. For Spinoza, even the ‘free’ individual or sage is affected by the social and emotional worlds in which he argues they ought to live. Yet, Spinoza is ambivalent about the social emotions. These socially conditioned affects and values may be harmful to the individual …Read more
  • Can we ever justly critique the norms and practices of another culture? When activists or policy-makers decide that one culture’s traditional practice is harmful and needs to be eradicated, does it matter whether they are members of that culture? Given the history of imperialism, many argue that any critique of another culture’s practices must be internal. Others argue that we can appeal to a universal standard of human well-being to determine whether or not a particular practice is legitimate o…Read more