Welcome to my web page. I am an associate professor of philosophy at Texas Tech University, where I have been since earning my Ph.D. from the University of Maryland in 2006. I specialize in aesthetics and the philosophy of art.

I have been working on a comprehensive philosophical theory of poetry for several years now, drawing on cognitive and evolutionary psychology, pragmatics and metrical phonology in linguistics, and work in disciplines such as classics, anthropology and archaeology on oral literary traditions ancient and contemporary. The resulting book,
tentatively entitled Beautiful Speech: The Origins, Nature, and Powers of Poetry, is nearly complete. My work on it has been funded by two fellowships, one from the Mellon and Woodrow Wilson Foundations and one from the National Humanities Center.

I have presented my research at the London Aesthetics Forum, the Rutgers University Center for Cognitive Science, the Institut Jean Nicod in Paris, and at the Universities of Auburn, Barcelona, UNC-Chapel Hill, Cincinnati, Houston, Lisbon, Maryland, Murcia, Nottingham, Oklahoma, Oslo, and Vienna (Department of Cognitive Biology) among others, and at the meetings of the American Philosophical Association, the American Society for Aesthetics, and the British Society of Aesthetics. I have contributed chapters to the following volumes:

The Philosophy of PoetryEncyclopedia of AestheticsSuffering Art Gladly     The Bloomsbury Companion to Aesthetics   A Companion to Aesthetics, 2nd Edition (1405169222) cover image    Special Issue: Philosophy & Poetry (MSIP 33:1)

I recently defended The Philosophical Importance of Aesthetics in my first contribution to the blogosphere. After a lively debate there, the discussion continued here. The post won the first Ornie Award for Outstanding Guest Post.

For further information, including links to my research work and to syllabi for current courses, please visit the pages linked above left.

Page last updated on 13 May 2015.