"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy." - Martin Luther King, Jr. ('48)
- Assistant Professor, Philosophy, Department of Philosophy & Religion, Morehouse College, Atlanta, GA
- Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Community Health and Preventative Medicine, Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA; MSM's bioethical representative for a MSM/TU/UAB cancer health disparity study
- Adjunct Professor, Animal Studies, Humane Society University, Washington, DC
830 Westview Drive SW
Atlanta, Georgia 30314
Research and teaching interests:
- applied and practical ethics: bioethics, ethics & animals, abortion;.
- critical thinking / argument analysis in ethics;
- ethical theory;
- intersections of ethics/meta-ethics/value theory and epistemology;
- science and values;
- philosophy, critical thinking and psychotherapy.
- Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Rochester (2005)
- MA in philosophy from Northern Illinois University (1999);
- BA's in philosophy and psychology from Wheaton College, IL (1996).
- In Socrates Wake, a blog about teaching philosophy: InSocratesWake.blogspot.com
- Webmaster for the Georgia Philosophy Society: http://sites.google.com/site/gaphilosophy/
- Assistant Editor, Between the Species: An Online Journal of the Study of Philosophy and Animals
- Editorial Advisor for the journal Theoretical and Applied Ethics
Some new things and things in progress:
- An interview with the Atlanta University Center Library!
On March 5, 2010, I created a survey to try to identify which topics are most commonly addressed in introductory ethics courses that have a contemporary moral issues or problems component. If (and only if) you teach a course that focuses on practical issues (with little to no discussion of moral theory) or has a mix of theory and problems (either a unit on theory and then problems or a mix of theory and problems throughout), please fill out this survey below:
- Rational Animals: Critical Thinking & Animal Ethics
- Why Think That? Reason, Argument and Ethics: A Guide To Making Moral Progress. A short book on logic and critical thinking that focuses on how to think (not what to think) about ethical questions that is geared toward students and scientists, called (see http://www.WhyThinkThat.com). The book is designed to bridge the 'gap' between how philosophers / logicians often think about moral issues -- especially the methods they use -- and how non-philosophers often address moral issues, and address some of common cognitive, emotional and social barriers to using philosophical methods in addressing moral questions.
- This is based on many of these handouts from my intro to ethics class.
- A Short Introduction to Philosophy of Race
- "Teaching African American Philosophy of Religion and the Many Problems of Evil" (LINK HERE)
1. Moral & Epistemic Realisms
2. Defending Epistemic Deontologies
3. Ayer and Stevenson's Ethical and Epistemological Emotivisms
4. Hare's Epistemological Universal Prescriptivism
5. Mackie's Epistemic Nihilism
6. Harman's Epistemic Relativism
7. Contemporary Moral and Epistemic Irrealisms
- A 2000 word version of my dissertation (!!!): "Moral Nihilism, Intellectual Nihilism & Practical Ethics"
- A review of my dissertation on an Ethical Realism blog.
- "'Coulda', 'Woulda', 'Shoulda' Arguments in Animal Ethics" (in preparation)
- "Racial Health Disparities and Race-Based Bioethics: A Critique of a Critique," International Journal of Radical Critique (January 2013), Vol. 02 No. 01.
- Also see: "Taking it to the Streets: Bioethics and Health Disparities" for the First Bioethics Conference on Cancer Health Disparities Research, January 2012, Tuskegee, AL 36088
- "Rational Engagement, Emotional Response and the Prospects for Progress in Animal Use 'Debates'" in Jeremy Garrett, ed., Animal Research in Theory and Practice (MIT Basic Bioethics Series, 2012), pp. 237-265. Draft of an APPENDIX that addresses more arguments that couldn't be addressed in the chapter.
- "Abortion, Metaphysics and Morality: A Review of Francis Beckwith’s Defending Life: A Moral and Legal Case Against Abortion Choice," Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 2011 Jun;36(3):261-73.
- "The Harmful, Nontherapeutic Use of Animals in Research Is Morally Wrong," Symposium Article, American Journal of the Medical Sciences, October 2011, Volume 342, Issue 4, pp 297-304; Powerpoint for Pitts Conference in Medical Ethics, Medical University of South Carolina, lecture on animal experimentation. October 29, 2010.
- "R.M. Hare’s Irrationalist 'Rationalism': A Critique of Universal Prescriptivism," Southwest Philosophy Review, Volume 27, Issue 1, January 2011, pp. 205-214.
- "Ethical Science, Scientific Ethics and Animal Ethics," Animals, Research and Alternatives conference, Washington, DC, August 2010.
- "Moral Progress and Moral Argument Analysis," American Association of Philosophy Teachers 2010 Summer Conference.
- A critique of arguments in Robert P. George and Christopher Tollefson's Embryo book against embryo experimentation. (Presented at the NC/SC philosophy conference, Feb. 2010.)
- "Do Zoos and Aquariums Promote Attitude Change in Visitors? A Critical Evaluation of the American Zoo and Aquarium Study," Marino, Lori; Lilienfeld, Scott O.; Malamud, Randy; Nobis, Nathan; Broglio, Ron; Society and Animals, Volume 18, Number 2, 2010, pp. 126-138(13)
- "Reasonable Humans and Animals: An Argument for Vegetarianism," Between the Species, Fall 2008; (3 page version, ideal for classroom use!)
- "Animals & Medicine: Do Animal Experiments Predict Human Responses?" Niall Shanks, Ray Greek, Nathan Nobis, and Jean Swingle-Greek, Skeptic: The Magazine , Volume 13, No. 3, Fall 2007, 44-51.
- "The 'Babe' Vegetarians: Bioethics, Animal Minds and Moral Methodology," for Bioethics at the Movies, ed. Sandra
Shapshay (Johns Hopkins Press, 2009).
- "A Rational Defense of Animal Experimentation," in Ethics and the Life Sciences , ed. Frederick Adams (Philosophy Documentation Center, 2006?). [Powerpoint]
- "Ayer and Stevenson's Epistemological Emotivism,"Croatian Journal of Philosophy, Vol. IV, No. 10, April, 2004, pp. 61-81. [HTML]
- "Feminist Ethics without Feminist Ethical Theory (or, more generally, phi-ethics without phi-ethical theory)" in Ethical Issues for the 21st Century, ed. Frederick Adams, special issue of the Journal of Philosophical Research, 2005, pp. 213-225. [PDF]
- "Carl Cohen's 'Kind' Argument For Animal Rights and Against Human Rights"Journal of Applied Philosophy, March 2004, vol. 21, no. 1, pp. 43-59. [PDF]).
- Reprinted in Clare Palmer, ed., Animal Rights (Ashgate 2008).
- "The Real Problem of Infant and Animal Suffering", Philo, a journal of the philosophy of religion Vol. 5, No. 2, Fall-Winter 2002, pp. 216-225. [PDF]
- "Vegetarianism and Virtue: Does Consequentialism Demand Too Little?"Social Theory and Practice : An International and Interdisciplinary Journal of Social Philosophy , vol. 28, no. 1, January 2002, pp. 135-56.
- An edited and improved version version of this paper is reprinted in the second edition of 2nd edition of Moral Issues In Global Perspective (Broadview Press, ed. Christine Koggel).
- "What would be so bad about rejecting libertarian 'free will'?" De Philosophia, Vol. XVI, No. 2, 21-34, 2002.
- "Vagueness, Borderline Cases, and Moral Realism: Where's the Incompatibility?"Philosophical Writings, No. 14, Summer 2000, pp. 29-39.
- "Cultivating Philosophical Skills and Virtues in Philosophy of Education" (Midwest Philosophy of Education Society, Fall 1999, Proceedings). [PDF].
- Nobis, Nathan and Jarr-Koroma, Abubakarr Sidique (2010) "Abortion and Moral Arguments From Analogy," The American Journal of Bioethics, 10: 12, 59 — 61, First published on: 14 December 2010 "Ought We Accept What Neuroscience Might Imply? Many Questions, Incommensurable Answers?", AJOB Neuroscience, 1:4, October, 2010, 45-47
- "Cut the Fat! Defending Trans Fats Bans" by
Nathan Nobis, Molly Gardner; 2010. The American Journal of
Bioethics. 10(3):39 [PDF]
- A reply to "Bioethical Considerations in Translational Research: Primate Stroke,"by Michael E. Sughrue, E. Sander Connolly Jr., Andrew F. Ducruet, Ruth L. Fischbach, Ricardo J. Komotar, William J. Mack, Thomas E. Martin, J. Mocco, 2009. The American Journal of Bioethics 9(5):3
- Discussion with the "On the Human" project of the National Humanities Center.
- An invited letter to the editor for Food Ethics magazine.
- "In Defense of 'How We Treat Our Relatives",' a letter to the editor in the the American Biology Teacher [PDF] November-December 2004.
- "Who Needs the 'Actual Future Principle'? Harman on Abortion,"Southwest Philosophy Review, Vol. 18, No. 2, July, 2002, pp. 55-63. [PDF]
- "Animal Dissection and Evidence-Based Life-Science & Health-Professions Education: A Response to Jonathan Balcombe's Commentators,"Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, 5(2), 2002, pp. 155-159.
- '"Balancing Off" Infant Torture and Death: A Reply to Andrew Chignell," Religious Studies: An International Journal of Philosophy of Religion, Vol. 37, March (2001), pp. 103-108.
- Russ Shafer-Landau's Moral Realism: A Defence (Teaching Philosophy, 29:2, June 2006, pp. 178-181) [PDF]
- Review (with David Graham) of Putting Humans First: Why We Are Nature's Favorite by Tibor Machan, (The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies, Fall 2006, Vol. 8, No. 1, 85-104). [ PDF of final version]
- Reply to John Altick's reply to our review Putting Humans First by Tibor Machan, The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies (with David Graham, Spring 2007). [PDF]
- Review of Why Animal Experimentation Matters: The Use of Animals in Medical Research,American Journal of Bioethics, Winter 2003, Vol. 3, No. 1, online Bioethics Education Network [PDF].
- A review of The Animal Rights Debate by Carl Cohen and Tom Regan (The Journal of Value Inquiry), 2002, vol. 36, Issue 4, pp. 579-583.
- An encyclopedia article on Peter Singer for an Encyclopedia of Environmental Ethics and Philosophy, Macmillan Reference USA 2008. The final copy is here, scanned in from the encyclopedia.
- An entry on "Animal Testing" written with Ray Greek, MD, and Kristina A. Hancock, JD, for anEncyclopedia of Issues in U.S. Public Policy. The volume was unfortunately canceled for publication. Perhaps someone else can use this entry?
- A talk at a "Science Tavern" meetup.
- An attempt at a meta-ethics paper for a 'popular' audience: "Moral Nihilism, Intellectual Nihilism & Practical Ethics"
- "Not 'Pro-Choice' and not 'Pro-Life': On the Ethics of Abortion", a Powerpoint presentation.
- 'Abortion Discussion Held', quotes from a forum on abortion, UR Campus Times newspaper
- Taking Hunger seriously: Are YOU obligated to help desperately poor children?, a Powerpoint presentation.
- "WWJDWJWD? Comments on Linda Zagzebski's 'The Incarnation and Virtue Ethics'."
Courses and teaching / advising materials:
- Why take philosophy courses? Some information about philosophy as a major and as career preparation, for Morehouse students
- A guide to recommended introductory reading in philosophy
- Philosophy of Sex and Gender (Spring 2012)
- PHI302: Introduction to Philosophical Ethics (every semester)
- PHI410: Philosophy of Religion (Spring 2010, Spring 2007, Fall 2008)
- Summer 2009 IMHOTEP Bioethics mini-course
- About the IMHOTEP program
- Introduction to Philosophy (Spring 2009)
- Advanced Ethics (Spring 2009)
- Ethics & Animals, an online course for HSU.
- Bioethics (Fall 2009, Spring 2008)
- Metaphysics (Fall 2007)
- Theories of Good & Evil
- Honors Program Bioethics / Ethics & Animals seminar
- The APA (American Philosophical Association)
- Association for Practical and Professional Ethics
- Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center
- Woodruff Library: The Philosophers Index
- Woodruff Library: Other Databases
- Woodruff Library: Interlibrary loan
- The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy
- The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
- "Ethics Updates"
- Philosophy Papers Online http://phonline.org/
- Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews
- EarlyModernTexts.com, Jonathan Bennett's contemporary English translations of early modern philosophy
- Google Scholar: http://scholar.google.com
- The Ten Dollar Club