About Me

I'm a philosophy instructor at Towson University teaching classes in ethics. (See my teaching page for more information).

My research involves questions at the intersection of epistemology, and meta and applied ethics such as how to think about the epistemic status of normative claims (e.g. do our evolutionary origins undermine the justification of our moral beliefs or practical reasoning?); how empirical evidence should constrain our thinking about ethical issues (e.g. do perverse incentives undermine the effectiveness of charitable giving?). I have a serious interest in philosophy of religion (e.g. should religious observers adopt doxastic or aspirational attitudes toward their faith?), and a minor interest in metaphysics, especially the philosophy of time (e.g. is time travel in a presentist universe tantamount to suicide?).

My work has appeared, among other places, in Ratio, Religious Studies, and Philosophia.

My dissertation is entitled 'Epistemological and Practical Challenges to Moral Realism.' My dissertation chair was Peter Carruthers, with committee members Dan Moller, Christopher Morris, Brian Kogelmann, and Tomas Bogardus (outside member--Pepperdine University).

I received a doctorate in philosophy from University of Maryland, College Park (2019), a master's degree in philosophy from San Francisco State University (2012), and a bachelor's degree in philosophy from the University of California, Davis (2010).

I was born and raised in Sacramento, California. Despite my working class background, I was drawn to philosophical ideas even as a child (e.g. the nature of infinity, moral disagreement). My freshman year of college, I took an introductory philosophy course on a whim. From there, I knew I wanted to pursue philosophy professionally.

When I'm not working, I enjoy music, stand-up comedy, and movies.

You can find my complete C.V. here. My primary email is jimmylicon01 [at]gmail.com.


‘The point of philosophy is to start with something so simple as not to seem worth stating, and to end with something so paradoxical that no one will believe it.’ --Bertrand Russell, The Philosophy of Logical Atomism
‘There is only one thing that a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is contradict other philosophers’ --William James, Remarks at a Peace Banquet