San Diego, CA
Position: Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, San Diego Mesa College (2000-Present)
Previous Position: Visiting Assistant Professor of Philosophy, College of William and Mary (1996-2000)
Areas of Specialization: Aesthetics, Philosophy of Taste, Ethics, Social and Political Philosophy
PH.D. in Philosophy, University of California, Riverside (1993) (Bernd Magnus,
M.A. in Philosophy, University of California, Riverside (1987)
B.A. in Philosophy, California State University at Northridge (1985)
Beauty and the Yeast: A Philosophy of Wine, Life, and Love, Probe Head Publications, 2020.
American Foodie: Taste, Art and the Cultural Revolution, Rowman & Littlefield, 2016.
Reviving the Left: The Need to Restore Liberal Values in America, Prometheus Press, 2009
Ethics: Key Concepts in Philosophy, Continuum Press, 2005.
(Ed) Moral Soundings: The Crisis of Values in Contemporary Life, Rowman &
Against Theory: Continental and Analytic Challenges in Moral Philosophy,
“Blunting the Blind Impress: Autonomy, Self-Reflection, and Tracking the Truth”,
Social Theory and Practice, vol. 39, #3, July 2013 (with Mark Wheeler)
“Levinasian Autonomy: How to Free a Hostage” in Sanders and Wisnewski, Ethics and Phenomenology, Lexington Press, 2012. (with Mark Wheeler)
“Of Cave Dwellers and Spirits: The Trouble with Moral Absolutes” in Dwight
Furrow, Moral Soundings: Readings on the Crisis of Values in Contemporary
Life, Lanham MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2004
“The Privacy Paradox”, The Humanist, May/June 2004
“Postmodernism” in The Encyclopedia of Ethics. 2nd Edition, Lawrence C.
Becker (Ed.) Garland Publishing, 2001.
“Agency in Postmodernity” in International Studies in Philosophy. July 2000.
“Schindler’s Compulsion: An Essay on Practical Necessity”, American
Philosophical Quarterly, July 1998.
“The Discomforts of Home: Nature and Technology in Hand’s End“, in Research
in Philosophy and Technology, Fall 1995.
Personal Blog Sites:
Monthly Column at Three Quarks Daily: Sample of Topics
“Food as Art: Representation and Meaning”
“Love and Sensibility”
“In Defense of Eating Meat”
“Why the Philosophy of Food is Important”
“Wine Tasting and Objectivity”
“Religion Can Provoke Rage as Well as Rapture,” Los Angeles Times, February 4,
“September 11: From the Right and the Left,” San Diego Union Tribune, January
“Singing the Shopping Mall Blues,” San Diego Union Tribune, April 27, 2001
“The Clinton Pardons: Thoughts on Forgiveness,” San Francisco Chronicle, February 25, 2001.
“Mandated Tests No Panacea for Improving Education,” San Diego Union
Tribune, February 8, 2001.
Review of The Essential Works of Michel Foucault, vol. 1, Ethics: Subjectivity
and Truth, Paul Rabinow, (Ed.), in “Book Notes”, Ethics, October, 1999.
Review of Ronald Bontekoe, Dimensions of the Hermeneutic Circle, in
Philosophy in Review, Fall 1997.
Review of Richard A. Cohen, Elevations: the height of the good in Rosenzweig
and Levinas, in Canadian Philosophical Review. June, 1995.
Papers and Presentations:
Presentations at the Postmodern Winemaking Symposium, Santa Rosa, California,
2017-2019 on various topics in wine aesthetics
“Edible Art, Artification, and the Importance of Sensory Experience,” Perspectives on
Food Aesthetics Conference, University of Wroclaw, Poland, June 17, 2016
“Why the Philosophy of Food is Important, Occasional Lecture Series,” San Diego
Mesa College, April 15, 2016
“Getting a Grip: Agential Authority and the Stability of Intentions,” APA Pacific
Division, 2011 (with Mark Wheeler)
“Autonomy, Self-Appraisal, and the Motive of Care,” APA Pacific Division, 2009 (with
“The Privacy Paradox,” Occasional Lecture Series, San Diego Mesa College,
September 12, 2003
“Of Cave Dwellers and Spirits: The Trouble with Moral Absolutes,” Occasional
Lecture Series, San Diego Mesa College, April 12, 2002
“Moral Agency in Postmodernity,” Philosophy Symposium, California
Polytechnic University, Pomona, February 8, 2001
“Moral Agency in Postmodernity,” Philosophy, Interpretation, and Culture
Conference, State University of New York at Binghamton, April 24, 1999.
“What is Postmodern Ethics?” Presented at Virginia Philosophical Association,
University of Virginia, October 24, 1997
“Should We Dust Off That Old Moral Must”, presented at College of William and
Mary, November 1, 1996.
“Lyotard and Levinas: Ethics and Tragic Conflict”, presented at the Society for
Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy, Chicago, October 13, 1995.
“The Discomforts of Home: Nature and Technology in Hand’s End”, presented at
the APA, Central Division Meeting, 1994.
Honors and Awards:
Distinguished Teacher of the Year, University of Redlands, Whitehead College,
Coordinator, NEH Summer Seminar for College Teachers (1991), “A Genealogy
Of Postmodernism: Nietzsche, Heidegger, Derrida, and Rorty”, Director,
Dr. Bernd Magnus.
Resident Fellow, Center for Ideas and Society, Winter 1991
Dean’s Fellowship: 1988-89, 1989-90
Teaching Assistantships: 1986-87, 1987-88, 1988-89, 1989-90
Summer 1988–Compiled an annotated bibliography and summary of positions in risk perception research for toxicology grant.
Summer 1987–Compiled an annotated bibliography of recent work in critical thinking.