•  334
    Deletion as second death: the moral status of digital remains
    Ethics and Information Technology 17 (4): 237-248. 2015.
    There has been increasing attention in sociology and internet studies to the topic of ‘digital remains’: the artefacts users of social network services (SNS) and other online services leave behind when they die. But these artefacts also pose philosophical questions regarding what impact, if any, these artefacts have on the ontological and ethical status of the dead. One increasingly pertinent question concerns whether these artefacts should be preserved, and whether deletion counts as a harm to …Read more
  •  176
    Ghosts in the Machine: Do the Dead Live on in Facebook?
    Philosophy and Technology 25 (3): 363-379. 2012.
    Abstract   Of the many ways in which identity is constructed and performed online, few are as strongly ‘anchored’ to existing offline relationships as in online social networks like Facebook and Myspace. These networks utilise profiles that extend our practical, psychological and even corporeal identity in ways that give them considerable phenomenal presence in the lives of spatially distant people. This raises interesting questions about the persistence of identity when these online profiles su…Read more
  •  152
    Is Narrative Identity Four-Dimensionalist?
    European Journal of Philosophy 20 (S1). 2012.
    The claim that selves are narratively constituted has attained considerable currency in both analytic and continental philosophy. However, a set of increasingly standard objections to narrative identity are also emerging. In this paper, I focus on metaphysically realist versions of narrative identity theory, showing how they both build on and differ from their neo-Lockean counterparts. But I also argue that narrative realism is implicitly committed to a four-dimensionalist, temporal-parts ontolo…Read more
  •  110
    Locke, Kierkegaard and the phenomenology of personal identity
    International Journal of Philosophical Studies 16 (5). 2008.
    Personal Identity theorists as diverse as Derek Parfit, Marya Schechtman and Galen Strawson have noted that the experiencing subject (the locus of present psychological experience) and the person (a human being with a career/narrative extended across time) are not necessarily coextensive. Accordingly, we can become psychologically alienated from, and fail to experience a sense of identity with, the person we once were or will be. This presents serious problems for Locke's original account of “sa…Read more
  •  88
    Are there dead persons?
    Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (6): 755-775. 2019.
    Schechtman’s ‘Person Life View’ offers an account of personal identity whereby persons are the unified loci of our practical and ethical judgment. PLV also recognises infants and permanent vegetative state patients as being persons. I argue that the way PLV handles these cases yields an unexpected result: the dead also remain persons, contrary to the widely-accepted ‘Termination Thesis.’ Even more surprisingly, this actually counts in PLV’s favor: in light of our social and ethical practices whi…Read more
  •  86
    Towards a new epistemology of moral progress
    European Journal of Philosophy 25 (4): 1824-1843. 2017.
    Awareness that moral beliefs and practices have changed across time threatens our confidence in our current moral beliefs: if past moral beliefs turned out to be wrong, how can we be sure ours aren't likewise mistaken? In this paper, I set up four desiderata for a successful theory of moral progress: it must allow us to judge that progress has occurred, avoid the image of increasing correspondence towards ahistorical truthmakers, allow for revision in belief, and yet not be disobligating. Rorty'…Read more
  •  83
    The Normative Turn in Conspiracy Theory Theory?
    Social Epistemology 37 (4): 535-543. 2023.
    The papers contained in this special issue are evidence that the philosophy of conspiracy theory is undergoing a ‘normative turn’, with earlier concerns about the epistemological soundness of conspiracy theories now being supplemented by a shift to concerns about discursive and epistemic justice. This is a welcome development. Nonetheless, these normative concerns need to be seen within the context of an ongoing and largely undeclared disagreement between generalists and particularists over just…Read more
  •  82
    Whats Missing in Episodic Self-Experience? A Kierkegaardian Response to Galen Strawson
    Journal of Consciousness Studies 17 (1-2): 1-2. 2010.
    In a series of important papers, Galen Strawson has articulated a spectrum of “temporal temperaments,” populated at one end by “Diachronics”, who experience their selves (understood as the “mental entity” they are at this moment) as something that existed in the past and will exist in the future, and at the other end by “Episodics”, who lack any such sense of temporal extension. As a self-declared Episodic, Strawson provides lucid descriptions of what episodicity is like, but cannot furnish a co…Read more
  •  79
    Fearful asymmetry: Kierkegaard’s search for the direction of time
    Continental Philosophy Review 43 (4): 485-507. 2010.
    The ancient problem of whether our asymmetrical attitudes towards time are justified remains a live one in contemporary philosophy. Drawing on themes in the work of McTaggart, Parfit, and Heidegger, I argue that this problem is also a key concern of Kierkegaard’s Either/Or. Part I of Either/Or presents the “aesthete” as living a temporally volatilized form of life, devoid of temporal location, sequence and direction. Like Parfit’s character “Timeless,” these aesthetes are indifferent to the dire…Read more
  •  78
    Naked Subjectivity: Minimal vs. Narrative Selves in Kierkegaard
    Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 53 (4): 356-382. 2010.
    In recent years a significant debate has arisen as to whether Kierkegaard offers a version of the “narrative approach” to issues of personal identity and self-constitution. In this paper I do not directly take sides in this debate, but consider instead the applicability of a recent development in the broader literature on narrative identity—the distinction between the temporally-extended “narrative self” and the non-extended “minimal self—to Kierkegaard's work. I argue that such a distinction is…Read more
  •  73
    Crossing the bridge: the first-person and time
    Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 13 (2): 295-312. 2014.
    Personal identity theory has become increasingly sensitive to the importance of the first-person perspective. However, certain ways of speaking about that perspective do not allow the full temporal aspects of first-person perspectives on the self to come into view. In this paper I consider two recent phenomenologically-informed discussions of personal identity that end up yielding metaphysically divergent views of the self: those of Barry Dainton and Galen Strawson. I argue that when we take a p…Read more
  •  72
    The problem of spontaneous goodness: from Kierkegaard to Løgstrup
    Continental Philosophy Review 49 (2): 139-159. 2016.
    Historically, Western philosophy has struggled to accommodate, or has simply denied, the moral value of spontaneous, non-reflective action. One important exception is in the work of K.E. Løgstrup, whose phenomenological ethics involves a claim that the ‘ethical demand’ of care for the other can only be realized through spontaneous assent to ‘sovereign expressions of life’ such as trust and mercy. Løgstrup attacks Kierkegaard for devaluing spontaneous moral action, but as I argue, Kierkegaard too…Read more
  •  67
    Uniting the perspectival subject: Two approaches
    Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 10 (1): 23-44. 2011.
    Visual forms of episodic memory and anticipatory imagination involve images that, by virtue of their perspectival organization, imply a notional subject of experience. But they contain no inbuilt reference to the actual subject, the person actually doing the remembering or imagining. This poses the problem of what (if anything) connects these two perspectival subjects and what differentiates cases of genuine memory and anticipation from mere imagined seeing. I consider two approaches to this pro…Read more
  •  65
    Phenomenology, Naturalism and Non-reductive Cognitive Science
    Australasian Philosophical Review 2 (2): 119-124. 2018.
    Volume 2, Issue 2, June 2018, Page 119-124.
  •  62
    Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Knud Ejler Løgstrup were WWII contemporaries: Lutheran theologians and religious figures in their respective German and Danish communities; both active in the anti-Nazi resistance. Being involved in the resistance, Bonhoeffer and Løgstrup were required to rethink what it meant to be ethical, in particular in relation to disclosure and the telling of truth, in a situation of war. In this paper, we consider the grounds on which both Løgstrup and Bonhoeffer acted, their beli…Read more
  •  62
    Will it be me? Identity, concern and perspective
    Canadian Journal of Philosophy 43 (2): 206-226. 2013.
    (2013). Will it be me? Identity, concern and perspective. Canadian Journal of Philosophy: Vol. 43, No. 2, pp. 206-226
  •  55
    Existentialist Methodology and Perspective: Writing the First-person
    In Soren Overgaard & Giuseppina D'Oro (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to Philosophical Methodology, Cambridge University Press. pp. 344-65. 2017.
    Without proposing anything quite so grandiose as a return to existentialism, in this paper we aim to articulate and minimally defend certain core existentialist insights concerning the first-person perspective, the relationship between theory and practice, and the mode of philosophical presentation conducive to best making those points. We will do this by considering some of the central methodological objections that have been posed around the role of the first-person perspective and “lived expe…Read more
  •  54
    Kierkegaard's mirrors: The immediacy of moral vision
    Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 50 (1). 2007.
    This paper explores Kierkegaard's recurrent use of mirrors as a metaphor for various aspects of moral imagination and vision. While a writer centrally concerned with issues of self-examination, selfhood and passionate subjectivity might well be expected to be attracted to such metaphors, there are deeper reasons why Kierkegaard is drawn to this analogy. The specifically visual aspects of the mirror metaphor reveal certain crucial features of Kierkegaard's model of moral cognition. In particular,…Read more
  •  52
    The importance of enchancing metacognition and encouraging active learning in philosophy teaching has been increasingly recognised in recent years. Yet traditional teaching methods have not always centralised helping students to become reflectively and critically aware of the quality and consistency of their own thinking. This is particularly relevant when teaching moral philosophy, where apparently inconsistent intuitions and responses are common. In this paper I discuss the theoretical basis o…Read more
  •  51
    Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Knud Ejler Løgstrup were WWII contemporaries: Lutheran theologians and religious figures in their respective German and Danish communities; both active in the anti-Nazi resistance. Being involved in the resistance, Bonhoeffer and Løgstrup were required to rethink what it meant to be ethical, in particular in relation to disclosure and the telling of truth, in a situation of war. In this paper, we consider the grounds on which both Løgstrup and Bonhoeffer acted, their beli…Read more
  •  48
    Kierkegaardian vision and the concrete other
    Continental Philosophy Review 39 (4): 393-413. 2006.
    The ethics expressed in Kierkegaard’s Works of Love has been subject to persistent criticism for its perceived indifference to concrete persons and failure to attend to the other in their individual specificity. Recent defenses of Works of Love have focused in large part on the role of vision in the text, showing the supposed “blind” empty formalism of the emphasis on the category of “the neighbor” to serve a normative model of seeing the other correctly. However, when this problem is viewed in …Read more
  •  43
    Social media is full of dead people. Untold millions of dead users haunt the online world where we increasingly live our lives. What do we do with all these digital souls? Can we simply delete them, or do they have a right to persist? Philosophers have been almost entirely silent on the topic, despite their perennial focus on death as a unique dimension of human existence. Until now. Drawing on ongoing philosophical debates, Digital Souls claims that the digital dead are objects that should be …Read more
  •  40
    Kierkegaard and Death (edited book)
    with Adam Buben
    Indiana University Press. 2011.
    Few philosophers have devoted such sustained, almost obsessive attention to the topic of death as Søren Kierkegaard. Kierkegaard and Death brings together new work on Kierkegaard's multifaceted discussions of death and provides a thorough guide to the development, in various texts and contexts, of Kierkegaard’s ideas concerning death. Essays by an international group of scholars take up essential topics such as dying to the world, living death, immortality, suicide, mortality and subjectivity, d…Read more
  •  39
  •  39
    This Article does not have an abstract
  •  32
    Duties to the Dead?: Earnest Imagination and Remembrance
    In Patrick Stokes & Adam Buben (eds.), Kierkegaard and Death, Indiana University Press. 2011.
  •  31
    The Kierkegaardian Mind (edited book)
    with Eleanor Helms and Adam Buben
    Routledge. 2019.
    Søren Kierkegaard remains one of the most enigmatic, captivating, and elusive thinkers in the history of European thought. The Kierkegaardian Mindprovides a comprehensive survey of his work, not only placing it in its historical context but also exploring its contemporary significance. Comprising thirty-eight chapters by a team of international contributors, this handbook is divided into eight parts covering the following themes: Methodology Ethics Aesthetics Philosophy of Religion and Theology …Read more
  •  29
    Narrative, Identity and the Kierkegaardian Self (edited book)
    Edinburgh University Press. 2015.
    Uses insights from Kierkegaard to explore contemporary problems of self, time, narrative and death Is each of us the main character in a story we tell about ourselves, or is this narrative understanding of selfhood misguided and possibly harmful? Are selves and persons the same thing? And what does the possibility of sudden death mean for our ability to understand the narrative of ourselves? These questions have been much discussed both in recent philosophy and by scholars grappling with the wor…Read more
  •  27
    7. Kierkegaard’s Critique of the Internet
    In Mélissa Fox-Muraton (ed.), Kierkegaard and Issues in Contemporary Ethics, De Gruyter. pp. 125-146. 2020.