The Philosophy Program

The Marshall University Philosophy Program has three full-time faculty members, all having earned Ph.D. degrees from top philosophy schools. We are unique in the tri-state area in three ways. We offer courses in three of the major contemporary philosophical styles, analytic, continental, and pragmatist philosophy, rather than just one. We are part of the only interdisciplinary degree in the area, the Marshall Humanities Major, team-teaching with the programs of classics and religious studies. (In other words, we benefit from the insights of three disciplines in studying philosophy in its various historical and cultural contexts.) And our degree is organized as a “contract” with each major, in which the student designs a large part of her or his own overall program.



Our faculty members are deeply familiar with a wide range of the history of philosophy from Plato to the present. They are also at the cutting edge of their various specialties, doing adventurous research, and being in contact with a variety of leading philosophers. This creates an exciting environment for our students, and unusual opportunities for our majors to make contacts and enter graduate school. Recent graduates have gone on to graduate study at nationally respected schools, in philosophy, English, law, divinity, and art history.

More generally, entering into philosophy enables us to participate better in the “dance of life”: to appreciate the joyful things more fully and widely and to steer through the hard things more successfully. It is at this deep level of developing what is meaningful in individual and communal life, more than any other, that our faculty members’ research and teaching contribute to exploring illuminating and helpful ground.


Philosophers left to right: Aristotle, Alain Locke, John Locke, Julia Kristeva, Descartes, Mary Wollstonecraft, Henry Thoreau