Research: Illusion aids understanding of autism

Recent autism research from Professor Jakob Hohwy’s Cognition & Philosophy Lab in the Department of Philosophy has been published in the prestigious journal Proceedings of the Royal Society: Biological Sciences B.

The experiment was conducted by PhD student Colin Palmer, who tested recent computational theories of sensory processing in autism. The study demonstrates differences in how individuals with autism process contextual sensory information, and how this impacts on their subsequent movement.

The study also identified differences in processing along the autism spectrum in the healthy, non-clinical population.

The study was a collaboration between the Cognition and Philosophy Lab at Monash University, the Cognitive Neuroscience Unit at Deakin University, and the Monash Alfred Psychiatry research centre.

Read more about the research project. 

Find out more:


Philosophy Flexible Learning

Several philosophy units are offered in flexible/OCL mode. Most of these units can be taken in any semester, including summer semester. These units use materials prepared specifically for flexible learning students and some are supported by introductory workshops.

For each unit there is a basic resource base of materials. These include a printed study guide, usually also a collection of readings and/or web-based resources. These materials have been prepared with distance education students in mind, so they are designed for students who will be working with very little face-to-face teaching. There is also a tutorial support service operating by phone and email. The optional introductory workshops provide the only scheduled class times for the course and students are strongly encouraged to attend.

The intention is that the flexible learning program should make philosophy units available to students whose work or other commitments make it difficult for them to attend regular classes on campus. That is why there are no scheduled classes. The assessment program is also flexible; it can be adjusted in various ways to fit into a tight schedule. Students will need to be well organised and disciplined. You should expect to spend 12 to 15 hours per week on any unit. You will need to be highly motivated and capable of working independently. We will provide a good support structure, with fast responses to phone and email; but we will not provide a normal teaching program of lectures and tutorials.

Once you have completed your enrolment, your name will appear on our enrolment lists and we’ll write to you approximately two weeks prior to the start of semester. You can also contact the Flexible Learning Office or call in to Room W604A in Building 11 (Menzies) and we’ll have your study materials ready for you.

For some of the units there is a textbook that you’ll need to purchase and these will be available from the Monash Bookshop.

Once you have your materials and any textbooks that you need, you’re up and running and ready to make a start with the course. You will usually get access to the VLE/Moodle site one week before the start of semester.


The assessment regime for units offered in flexible delivery mode will involve a series of tasks, each of which must be completed to a satisfactory standard before moving to the next. Students will have a right to attempt any task, except the exam, at least once, so there is the opportunity to learn and improve from less successful efforts. In most cases, marking will be completed within five to seven days of submission, so students will have rapid feedback on their progress.

Contact us if you would like further information:

Flexible Learning Program
Philosophy Department
Ph: (03) 9905 3222
Fax: (03) 9905 3221
Flexible Learning Program
Philosophy Department
Room W604A
Building 11
Monash University VIC 3800


Honours in Philosophy

The Honours degree in Philosophy is a fourth year of study beyond the normal B.A. It is possible to do Honours part-time. It is also possible to enter the Honours program at midyear. Honours is a pre-requisite for entry to higher degrees by research, such as the M.A. (research) and Ph.D.

The Honours Curriculum

See the Philosophy Honours handbook entry for more information on the curriculum and units involved.

The Research Project

When you complete your research paper you will have produced a substantial piece of philosophy (around eight thousand words) on a topic of your own choosing. Because philosophy is a discipline in which journal articles are the most common way of transmitting research findings, we will teach you how to write one. We think this is more valuable than getting you to produce a longer thesis. A student excelling at this paper will have produced an original contribution on a philosophical issue, suitable for submission to a scholarly journal.

Each student is assigned to a supervisor, who will oversee your work on the project. You will work up to the writing of the main research paper by a series of shorter assessment tasks and attending a series of Research Skills Workshops. Initial meetings of the workshop will include presentations on the use of research tools in philosophy. You will be guided in the preparation of a bibliography and literature review for your chosen topic. With your supervisor, you will plan and execute a first draft of your research paper. You will then receive feedback from examiners and will revise your work – just as you would if your paper were provisionally accepted for publication in a journal. You will also present your paper to the Department and field questions about it – just as you would if you were giving a paper at a philosophy conference.

For full details of assessment, please check the latest edition of the Undergraduate Handbook at:


ATS4868 Honours A and ATS4869 Honours B are modularised subjects. You complete each one by completing two sub-units of coursework, which you choose from a of a selection of offerings made available each semester. (There will be at least three offerings in each semester, and in most cases there will be four.) The subject areas for the coursework sub-units will include:

i) Metaphysics and Epistemology
ii) Value Theory
iii) Foundations of Analytic Philosophy
iv) Contemporary European Philosophy
v) Philosophy of Mind and Cognition
vi) Philosophical Pedagogy

Each unit consists of nine two-hour seminars. The specific topics covered in the coursework sub-units will be different in each semester and will reflect the particular research interests of the staff members teaching them. The primary assessment task for each coursework sub-unit will be a 4500-word essay, except for Philosophical Pedagogy which will involve variety of exercises and a practical (the practical may involve teaching a tutorial under supervision). Students may ask staff members to arrange a supervised reading unit around a topic of particular interest to the student, in lieu of one of the coursework sub-units. However, these kinds of arrangements will only be practicable from time to time, based on the availability and interest of particular staff members; hence we cannot make any guarantees about our capacity to offer this kind of specialised assessment as part of the Honours programme.

What else happens in Honours?

Throughout the year you will have the opportunity to interact with staff, post-graduate students and other Honours students in the life of the department, seeing first-hand what it means to be a member of a community of shared inquiry.

Since Philosophy has a relatively small Honours cohort, you will have greater opportunities than you had at undergraduate level for close and sustained interaction with your teachers and fellow students. You will also be strongly encouraged to meet with other honours students informally and outside of class, to carry on the debates and discussions that have been initiated in your classes, and to talk about the topics you’re working on for your research. The honours coordinator will from time to time arrange gatherings to facilitate these kinds of part-social/part-academic interactions.

Where will Philosophy Honours take me?

In general, any Honours degree adds to the prestige of your B.A. If you decide not to pursue further studies, your Honours degree tells potential employers that you are intelligent, articulate and capable of self-directed research. If you want to pursue post-graduate studies, such as an M.A. or Ph.D., an Honours degree is an essential first step. Whichever direction you choose to go, Honours in Philosophy from Monash is a particularly good start in terms of both preparation and prestige. Monash Philosophy leads all other philosophy programs in the Group of Eight universities in research and post-graduate degrees. Monash philosophers have an international reputation for excellence in a number of areas, including Ethics, Formal Logic, Metaphysics, Philosophical Logic, Philosophy of Mind, Philosophy of Language, and Philosophy of Religion.

Thus, if you can achieve first class Honours in Philosophy at Monash, you will be in a competitive position to apply for MA or PhD Programmes in Philosophy, both in Australia and abroad.

Will I qualify for Honours?

Students who want to do Honours in Philosophy should have a B.A. with a major in philosophy. You should have a Distinction average over four later-year philosophy subjects: at least three of which must be at 3rd year level.

If possible, we recommend that you do more than just a major in philosophy, as preparation for honours. From 2014, the B.A. will include the option of an extended major in philosophy, which involves taking two extra subjects at 3rd year level. We strongly encourage intending honours students to take the extended major.

Please note that acceptance into the Honours program is always conditional upon sufficient places being made available by the Faculty. For enrollment inquiries, contact the Department Honours coordinator.

Are there any Scholarships?

If your average in the four subjects used to calculate your eligibility for Honours is greater than 80%, you may have a chance at a Faculty Honours scholarship, worth $3000.

Why do Honours?

Philosophy students are accustomed to evaluating reasons. One reason to do Honours is obviously the prestige of the degree, or the opportunity to go on to further studies. But the best reasons are much more simple. First, in Honours, you’ll get to undertake further study in areas of philosophy that you are interested in. In your thesis you’ll be expected to add something of your own to the ongoing conversation that is the history of philosophy. That’s exciting and challenging. Second, you should do Honours in philosophy precisely because it’s hard. You won’t know whether you are truly excellent if you don’t try.

Some useful resources:

Here are some places you might want to go for further information.

Monash Philosophy Staff page at

Check out the research interests of individual staff members to find a suitable supervisor. You can also get the most up to date contact details for the Honours Coordinator.

Monash Undergraduate Handbook at

The undergraduate handbook contains the formal details of assessment for Honours units.

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy at

An outstanding online encyclopedia. If you are thinking of a thesis topic over the holidays, it would be an excellent idea to check this site out for some background reading before approaching a prospective supervisor.

The Philosopher’s Index and other databases via

Once you have narrowed down your thesis topic to something reasonably specific, why not start looking for some recent journal articles in the Philosopher’s Index?

Research in Logic and Metaphysics

Researchers in this strength undertake to answer metaphysical questions about what exists and how the various categories of existents are related to one another, as for instance the manner of existence possessed by numbers or by God. A particular question in metaphysics addressed by the team is the nature of the relation between minds and bodies.

Logic is the study of ways in which theories, including metaphysical theories, can be expressed and justified. Monash Arts’ strength in metaphysics is closely integrated with research strength in logic, including not only formal logic and the study of rigorous reasoning in mathematics, but also the history of logic, and critical reflections on issues in philosophical logic, such as the nature of representation, reference and truth.

Recent research grants for researchers working in these areas:

The McDonnell Project in Philosophy and the Neurosciences

    , Ian Gold.


Research in History of Philosophy

Monash Philosophy has particular strengths in ancient Greco-Roman philosophy, Indian philosophy, early modern philosophy, and in the philosophical and political writings of European women.

Recent research grants:


Resources for Undergraduate Students

Reference and Citation Rules

If you are using someone else’s work – from a book, an article or a website – you must acknowledge the author and the publishing details. Providing references to a passage makes it possible for readers to follow up the sources of the ideas discussed in that piece of writing and, if necessary, place them in a wider context or check the interpretation of the sources used. All sources should be acknowledged, including those from which quotations are taken and those which are paraphrased. For Philosophy the preferred method of indicating the source used in a particular passage is to provide a reference in the text adjacent to the relevant information, idea or quotation, using the Harvard System, explained below.

There is useful information on the Library site at

References in the text

All references to books, articles, and other sources are to be identified at an appropriate point in the text by name of author, year of publication, and page number (within parentheses). Someexamples illustrating different situations are provided below.

  • Reference to an individual author’s general argument should be in the form of ‘Clark(1996) argues that …’.
  • Reference to more than one author should be in the form of ‘various authors have argued that … (Marcus 1987; Clarke 1996)’.
  • Reference to specific page number(s) should be in the form of ‘Clarke (1996:124) suggests that …’.

More specifically:

(a) Where the author’s name is in your text it should be followed immediately by the year of publication and page reference:

Landesman (2002:84) has argued that Descartes assumes an internalist view about knowledge.

(b) Where the author’s name is not in your text, insert in brackets, at an appropriate point immediately following the quotation, paraphrase or reference, the family name(s), year ofpublication, and the page number:

Many philosophers have argued that Descartes strategy is viciously circular (Landesman 2002:128-9).

(c) Where two authors are involved cite both family names. Where more than two authors are involved, cite the family name of the first author followed by et al.:

May et al.(1996:9).

(d) Separate multiple citations by semicolons:

Several recent writers have argued that identity is not what really matters (Parfit 1986; Sosa 1990).

(e) Where you are referring to more than one source published by an author in the same year , use letters (a, b, etc.) to distinguish between them:

Lewis (1984a, 1984b)

(f) When referring to an author quoted or referred to in another text, give date and page numbers from the text you have consulted, for example:

(Hume in Landesman 2002:127)

h) When referring to a paper from a collection of papers, use the author’s name to identifythe source, e.g. Stocker’s paper in the book edited by Jonathan Dancy should be written as shown below.

Stocker (1997) not Dancy (1997).

Sometimes when using a direct quote the exact author’s words will not ‘fit’ grammatically into your sentence , or else you may wish to omit some of their words. In this case you need to use three dots … to denote an omission of words or square brackets [ ] to denote the insertion of some of your own words into the sentence.

For example:

Johnston (1997:169) argues that ‘[t]he fictional device of teleportation can be used to make vivid the details of R-variant concern. … [In these imaginary cases] R holds between the person with the original body and the person with the newly made body’.


The bibliography (or reference list), located at the end of the essay, should list alphabetically, by author’s family name, all references cited in the text. Do not include references which you have read but not used. Generally speaking the following conventions should be followed:


Author’s surname, initial (year published), Title of Book. Place published, publishing company.

Book Chapter/Paper in Edited Collection

Author’s surname, initial (year published), ‘title of chapter/paper’, in editor’s surname, initial, edited Title of Book. Place published, publishing company. page(s).

Journal Article

Author’s surname, initial (year published), ‘title of article’. Title of Journal, volume number, month. pages(s).

Newspaper Article

Author’s surname, initial,’title of article’. Name of Newspaper, date and year, page(s).

Unit Guides, Unit Readers, Lecture Notes

Previously published papers:

When you refer to articles from the Unit Reader treat the Reader articles as if they were book or journal articles. In your citations refer to the page numbers from the Reader, not the original page numbers (unless you have independently consulted the original). In the reference list or bibliography use the bibliographical details as quoted in the Reader. For example:

Lewis, David. (1976) ‘The Paradoxes of Time Travel’,American Philosophical Quarterly, 13; reprinted in Time, Self and Freedom Study Guide, Monash, 2001:49-56.

Unpublished papers:

Lewis, David. (1976) ‘The Paradoxes of Time Travel'; printed in Time, Self and Freedom Study Guide, Monash, 2001:49-56.

Notes from Study Guides:

Townsend, A. (ed.), Life, Death and Morality Study Guide, Monash, 2005: 60-61.

Internet sources

You need to identify the source of material obtained from the internet as you would from a monograph or journal source. For in-text referencing you need to identify the author and date (if known) e.g. (Townsend, 1996). Note that we recommend you do not use websites which do not give the name/s of the author/s.

In your bibliography the full details of the author and the date should be provided followed by the title of the article and the URL , that is the internet address at which the sources can be located along with the date of publication and the date you accessed the information.

Format: Author’s last name, first name. (document date or date of last revision [if different from access date]) ‘Title of Document.’ Title of complete work [if applicable]. Version or file number [if applicable]. Protocol and address, access path or directories (date of access).

For example:

Burka, Lauren P. (1993) ‘A Hypertext History of Multi-User Dimensions’, MUD History. (accessed 2 Aug. 1996).Walker, Janice R. (April 1995)’COS-Humanities Style: MLA-Style Citations of Electronic Sources’, The ColumbiaGuide to On-line Style. (accessed 10 March 1996). This is a useful site to check referencing of web databases, computer games, and various other electronic sources). In your text a reference to the above should appear thus: (Walker,1995) with the full citation in the bibliography.

For example:

* For reference to a book in your final list of references use the following format:

Lewis, David (1986) On the Plurality of Worlds. Oxford: Blackwell.

* For reference to a chapter in a book:

Shoemaker, Sydney (1997) ‘Parfit on Identity’, in Jonathan Dancy (ed.)ReadingParfit . Oxford: Blackwell.

* For reference to a journal article:

Murdoch, Dugald (1999) ‘The Cartesian Circle’ in The Philosophical Review, 108:221-44.

(If you cannot use italics you should underline. The examples provided above show how to indicate the titles of books and journals by means of italics).

In the examples provided above there are several points you should note:

(a) Where you have make reference to several different pieces of work published by the same author they should be set out in chronological order of publication.

(b) Underline or italicise the names of journals and the titles of books, not the titles of articles or chapter headings.

(c) The titles of chapters or reprinted articles from edited books should be placed in quotation marks, as has been done for Shoemaker (1997) above.

(d) The titles of articles from journals should be placed in quotation marks, as has been done for Murdoch (1999) above.

(e) The place of publication is the town or city listed first on the relevant page of the book. It is not the place where the book was printed. (Some publishers are transnational companies and list their major offices throughout the world – the office from which the book was published is the one required).

(f) The date of publication is the date listed for the latest published edition. (Ignore reprint dates).

Observe and use the correct punctuation format.

Resources for Undergraduate Students of Philosophy and Bioethics

Philosophical Writing

Useful pages from James Pryor’s website

(James prepared these papers while at Princeton; he’s now at New York University.)

Philosophical Resources on the Web


Undergraduate Studies in Philosophy Department

There are numerous good reasons for studying philosophy and the Department of Philosophy at Monash offers a wide range of units at first, second and third years. Units are offered at Clayton and Caulfield campuses and in OCL/Flex mode . Study at Honours level is also possible. We hope you will enjoy your studies with us.

With any queries or for more information, contact the School’s Undergraduate Coordinator via

For detailed information about the units on offer, see the Undergraduate Handbook.



How does philosophy compare to other subjects?

Most people who study philosophy will agree that it is very different to most other things they have studied! It is not easy to generalize about what makes philosophy different, but here are two ways in which philosophy at least typically differs from other disciplines.

First, philosophers focus on somewhat different questions than are addressed by other researchers. In particular, philosophers are often concerned to find out the truth about the foundations of our knowledge or our practices. Some of the most important philosophical questions to have been studied are: What is the nature of consciousness? and could a machine be conscious? Is there an objective basis to morality, given that there do not seem to be any moral truths to be discovered in the natural sciences? Is there a compelling rational argument for or against the existence of God? Are space and time fundamental? How can we be sure that we have knowledge of an external world, given that it is possible that we are dreaming?

Second, philosophers use methods and approaches that can appear a bit different from other disciplines. In particular, because philosophers are interested in providing the strongest possible arguments for their views, they sometimes use techniques borrowed from formal logic to help formulate their ideas. But not all philosophy is like this. Some philosophers work closely with scientists in empirical disciplines such as psychology or neuroscience; others focus on historical approaches; and yet others draw inspiration from art and literature. In virtually all cases, however, philosophers are careful to make their reasoning and methods explicit, and this partly explains why philosophy is so useful for developing critical reasoning skills.

Why study philosophy?

There are lots of good reasons to study philosophy, and we cannot hope to survey all of them here. We think the best reason to study philosophy, however, is a very simple one: because you enjoy it.

If you are lucky enough to be studying in a Faculty as diverse as the Arts Faculty at Monash, you can choose between a wide array of subjects. All of them are intellectually rigorous and will develop your ability to think critically, to weigh evidence, to write and to communicate. Given that, why not develop these useful abilities doing something that you are passionate about, find challenging, exciting, and interesting?

Philosophy at Monash

Perhaps you won’t be surprised to hear that philosophy is one of the most popular first-year units offered in Arts at Monash. And perhaps you won’t be surprised to hear, as well, that philosophy is a very popular major with Arts/Law students… or that the philosophy department is one of the main departments involved in the cognitive science program at Monash… or… and so we could go on!

We hope that you too will find in the vast array of philosophy units available at Monash a challenging and stimulating course of study, a course of study that will contribute in a fundamental way to your overall program of study at Monash.

Many units you take at university will teach you interesting and important facts. But it is the nature of facts that you sometimes forget them. Though philosophy too will teach you some facts, it will primarily teach you a way of thinking to which you will have recourse for the rest of your life.

Have a chat to the Undergraduate Coordinator via email

Our People

Continuing Staff

Research and Contract Staff


Adjunct Research Associates

Philosophers in other academic units at Monash

Return to 

Mid-year publications round-up, Part II

And here is part two of our publications round-up

Journal articles and book chapters

Ross, Alison. ‘The Distinction Between Mythic and Divine Violence: Walter Benjamin’s “Critique of Violence” from the Perspective of “Goethe’s Elective Affinities”’, New German Critique, Vol.41, No1, 121, Winter, 2014, pages 93–120.

Ross, Alison. ‘The Problem of the Image: Sacred and Profane Spaces in Walter Benjamin’s Early Writing’, Critical Horizons, Vol. 14, No. 3, pages 355–379.

Ross, Alison. ‘The Image: Historical, Conceptual, Aesthetic, Moral’, Critical Horizons, Vol. 14, No. 3, pages 265–270.

Saward, Mark. Collins’ core fine-tuning argument. International
Journal for Philosophy of Religion

Schmidtz, David and John Thrasher “The Virtues of Justice," in Virtues and their Vices, edited by Kevin Timpe and Craig A. Boyd, Oxford University Press (2014), pp. 59–74.

Sparrow, R. 2014. “Egalitarianism and moral bioenhancement,” American Journal of Bioethics Apr;14(4):20–8. doi: 10.1080/15265161.2014.889241.

Sparrow, R. 2014. “Reproductive technologies, risk, enhancement, and the value of genetic relatedness,” Journal of Medical Ethics

Sparrow, R. 2013. “Book review: Unfit for the Future: The Need for Moral Enhancement, by Ingmar Persson and Julian Savulescu,” Australasian Journal of Philosophy. DOI: 10.1080/00048402.2013.860180.

Sparrow, R. 2014. “Ethics, eugenics, and politics.” In Akira Akayabashi (ed) The Future of Bioethics: International Dialogues. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 139–153.

Sparrow, R. 2014. “What we can – and can’t — learn about the ethics of enhancement by thinking about sport.” In Akira Akayabashi (ed) The Future of Bioethics: International Dialogues. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 218–223.

Sparrow, R. 2014. “(Im)Moral technology? Thought experiments and the future of ‘mind control’.” In Akira Akayabashi (ed) The Future of Bioethics: International Dialogues. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 113–119.

Sparrow, R. 2014.“The real force of ‘procreative beneficence’.” In Akira Akayabashi (ed) The Future of Bioethics: International Dialogues. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 183–192.

Thrasher, J. “Uniqueness and Symmetry in Bargaining Theories of Justice,” Philosophical Studies, 167, no. 3 (2014): pp. 683–699.

Thrasher, J. “Reconciling Justice and Pleasure in Epicurean Contractarianism,“ Ethical Theory & Moral Practice 16, no. 2 (2013): pp 423–436

Thrasher, John and Keith Hankins, “When Justice Demands InequalityThe Journal of Moral Philosophy (2014).DOI: 10.1163/17455243–4681035

Thrasher, John and Kevin Vallier, “The Fragility of Consensus: Public Reason, Diversity and StabilityThe European Journal of Philosophy (2014) DOI: 10.1111/ejop.12020

Thrasher, J. “Ordering AnarchyRationality, Markets and Morals 5, no. 1 (2014), pp. 30–46.

van Doorn, G., Hohwy, J., Symmons, M. 2014. Can you tickle yourself if you swap bodies with someone else? Consciousness & Cognition 23: 1–11. Philosophy Compass 9.6 (2014) pp 368–381.

Windt, J. M. (2013): Reporting dream experience: Why (not) to be skeptical about dream reports. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 7.

Windt, J. M. (2013): Minding the dream self: Perspectives from the analysis of self-experience in dreams. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 36(6), 633.


New lecturers in Philosophy [updated]

The Philosophy Department has recently appointed two new lecturers to continuing positions.

John Thrasher (Ph.D. Arizona, 2013) specializes in political philosophy and moral theory. He has published on a variety of topics, including contractarianism, Adam Smith, the stability of consensus, and Epicurean political thought. John will be commencing work in the department in July 2014.

Jennifer Windt (Ph.D. Mainz, 2012) works in the philosophy of mind and cognitive science, and has a forthcoming book with MIT press, on both empirical and philosophical approaches to dreaming. Jenny will be commencing at Monash in February 2015, but she will also be making a brief visit to the Department in July this year.

Update: The Department has more recently appointed Alexei Procyshyn to a three-year Lecturer position in European Philosophy and Critical Theory.

Alexei completed undergraduate and MA studies in Canada, followed by a PhD at the New School for Social Research in 2013. His doctoral research focused on the concept of critique in the work of Walter Benjamin. He comes to us from a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Macau, and will be commencing in July.



Philosophy, mid-year publications round-up, Part I

Lots of new publications since our last round-up, so we’re splitting the announcement in two. Tune in next week for part two.



Hohwy, J. 2013. The Predictive Mind (Oxford University Press).

Journal articles and book chapters

Bayne, T. Hohwy, J. 2014. Global Disorders of Consciousness. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. Cognitive Science 5(2): 129–138.

Bhattacharya, Aveek, and Simpson, Robert Mark (2014), “Life in overabundance: Agar on life-extension and the fear of death”, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 17 (2): 223–36.

Broad, Jacqueline. “Women on Liberty in Early Modern England”, Philosophy Compass 9, no. 2 (2014): 112–22.

Broad, Jacqueline. “The Equality of the Sexes: Three Feminist Texts of the Seventeenth Century [book review]”, British Journal for the History of Philosophy, published online 7 May 2014.

Chadha, M., (2014). “On Knowing Universals: The Nyāya way.” Philosophy East and West 64:3. pp.287–303

Chadha, M., (2014). “A Buddhist Explanation of Episodic Memory: From Self to Mind” Asian Philosophy 24:1, pp. 14–27.

Chadha, M. (forthcoming) “Time-Series of Ephemeral Impressions: The Abhidharma-Buddhist View of Conscious Experience“, Phenomenology and Cognitive Sciences.

Chadha, M. (forthcoming). “Meditation and Unity of Consciousness: A perspective from Buddhist epistemology.” Phenomenology and Cognitive Sciences.

D’Agostino, Fred, Gaus, Gerald and Thrasher, John, “Contemporary
Approaches to the Social Contract
”, The Stanford Encyclopedia of
(Spring 2014 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.).

Daniels, Paul. “Occupy Wall: A Mereological Puzzle and the Burdens of Endurantism”. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 2014; 92 (1): 91–101

Daniels, Paul. “Endurantism and Paradox.” Philosophia 2013; 41 (4): 1173–1179

Emerton, P. and T. Handfield. 2014. Understanding the political defensive privilege. In The Morality of Defensive War, ed. C. Fabre and S. Lazar. Oxford: Clarendon Press, pp. 40–65.

Gaus, Gerald and John Thrasher “Social Evolution,” in The Routledge Companion to Social and Political Philosophy, edited by Gerald Gaus and Fred D’Agostino, Routledge (2013), pp. 643–655.

Hohwy, J. (2014) Elusive phenomenology, counterfactual awareness, and presence without mastery. Cognitive Neuroscience.

Hohwy, J. 2014. The self-evidencing brain. Noûs.

Humberstone, Lloyd. ‘Aggregation and Idempotence’, to appear in Review of Symbolic Logic.

Humberstone, Lloyd. ‘Zolin and Pizzi: Defining Necessity from Noncontingency’, to appear in Erkenntnis.

Oppy, Graham & Saward, Mark. Molinism and Divine Prophecy of Free
. Religious Studies, Volume 50, Issue 2, June 2014, pp 235–44.

Palmer, C., Paton, B., Barclay, L., Hohwy, J. 2013. Equality, efficiency, and sufficiency: Responding to multiple parameters of distributive justice during charitable distribution. The Review of Philosophy and Psychology 4(4) 659–674.

Procyshyn, Alexei. ‘Walter Benjamin’s Philosophy of Language.’ Philosophy Compass.


Project: Prospects for an Ethics of Self-Cultivation

 hi-res‘Prospects for an Ethics of Self-Cultivation’ is a two-year-long research project which will investigate the revival of ethical self-cultivation in modern European philosophy, particularly in the works of Nietzsche and Foucault. The project is organised by research students from the philosophy departments at Monash and the University of Warwick, UK and is funded by the Monash-Warwick Alliance. Each institution will host a three-day workshop and conference, as well as produce a collection of video resources on the topic of self-cultivation.

The first event, ‘Hellenistic Ethics from Nietzsche to Foucault,’ will be held at The University of Warwick, UK during 25-27 September, 2014. A call for abstracts and more information can be found on the conference webpage: Future news is available on the project’s Facebook page:

Visitors to the Department, Semester 1

The Philosophy Department is pleased to welcome the following visitors in first semester this year.

Dr Ole Koksvik. Dr Koksvik will be visiting with the Department for the whole of first semester. He currently holds a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Bergen, and is working on projects in philosophy of mind, epistemology, and rational choice. Dr Koksvik will be giving the Departmental seminar on 7 March.

Dr Josh Skewes. Dr Skewes will visit the Cognition & Philosophy lab from January to April. He is working at the Interacting Minds Centre at Aarhus University, Denmark, and has a background in both philosophy and cognitive neuroscience. While at Monash, Dr Skewes will collaborate with Jakob Hohwy, Bryan Paton and Colin Palmer on experiments in social cognition and autism.

(Arrive Feb 2; depart April 1.)

Professor Yukihiro Nobuhara. Professor Nobuhara will visit the Cognition & Philosophy lab in March. He is director of the Centre for Philosophy at University of Tokyo. This is part of ongoing collaboration between Philosophers at the University of Tokyo and Monash University. March 12 there will be a joint workshop on philosophy of mind and moral psychology.

 (Arrive March 8; depart March 18.)

Professor Tim Bayne. Prof Bayne will visit the Cognition & Philosophy lab in February. He is professor of philosophy and University of Manchester. Bayne is collaborating with Jakob Hohwy on several projects related to philosophy of mind and the science of consciousness.

(Arrive Feb 2; depart Feb 11)

Dr Peter Fazekas. Dr Fazekas will visit the Cognition & Philosophy lab from May to August. He is a research fellow at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary, having completed his PhD at Edinburgh. Fazekas will collaborate with Jakob Hohwy on projects relating to predictive coding.

 (Arrive May 20; depart August 2.)


Andrew Benjamin on Walter Benjamin

Andrew Benjamin’s new book, Working with Walter Benjamin: Recovering a Political Philosophy has just been published in Europe. Coinciding with its publication, Andrew has been elected to the Executive Committee of the International Walter Benjamin Gesellschaft.


TechDebates: Lethal Autonomous (“Killer”) Robots

TechDebates series: Lethal Autonomous (“Killer”) Robots

This video is of the inaugural debate in the TechDebates on Emerging Technologies series, which focused on Lethal Autonomous “Killer” Robots. LARs are machines that can decide to kill. Such technology has the potential to revolutionize modern warfare and more. The need for understanding LARs is essential to decide whether their development and possible deployment should be regulated or banned. This TechDebate centers on the question: are LARs ethical?

Ron Arkin, Robotics Professor at Georgia Tech’s College of Computing,
Rob Sparrow, Associate Professor in the Philosophy Department in the School of Philosophical, Historical and International Studies at Monash University.

The TechDebates on Emerging Technologies is a debate series presented by the Center for Ethics and Technology (CET) at the Georgia Institute of Technology.


Jakob Hohwy in New Scientist, on self-perception and tickling oneself

Can you tickle yourself if you are fooled into thinking that someone else is tickling you? A new experiment says no, challenging a widely accepted theory about how our brains work…

More details here.


Publications round-up, October

Below is a round up (probably incomplete) of recent works by members of the Philosophy Department (including graduate students and adjuncts) to appear in print over the last few months:

Bales, Adam, Daniel Cohen, and Toby Handfield. Decision theory for agents with incomplete preferences. Australasian Journal of Philosophy.

Bayne, T., Hohwy, J. Consciousness: Theoretical approaches. In A.E. Cavanna, A. Nani, H. Blumenfeld, S. Laureys (eds.), Neuroimaging of Consciousness, 23. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

Broad, Jacqueline (ed.), Mary Astell’s The Christian Religion, as Professed by a Daughter of the Church of England. Toronto: Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies and Iter Publishing.

Clarke-Doane, Justin. Moral Epistemology: The Mathematics Analogy. Noûs.

Clarke-Doane, Justin. What is Absolute Undecidability? Noûs. Vol. 47: 467–81.

Clarke-Doane, Justin. Morality and Mathematics: The Evolutionary Challenge. This paper, first published in Ethics, has been selected for the 32nd volume of The Philosopher’s Annual.

Green, Karen. Women’s Writing and the Early Modern Genre Wars. Hypatia 28(3) (2013), pp. 499–515.

Handfield, Toby. Rational choice and the transitivity of betterness. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.

Heil, John. Philosophy of Mind: A Contemporary Introduction, 3rd ed. London: Routledge.

Heil, John. ‘Mental Causation’. In E. Lepore and K. Ludwig, eds. A Companion to the Philosophy of Donald Davidson Oxford: Wiley–Blackwell, 126–40.

Heil, John. ‘Contingency’. In T. Goldschmidt, ed. The Puzzle of Existence: Why Is There Something Rather Than Nothing? London: Routledge, 167–81.

Heil, John. ‘Mental Causation According to Davidson’. In G. D’Oro, ed. Reasons and Causes: Causalism and Non-Causalism in the Philosophy of Action. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 75–96.

Humberstone, Lloyd. ‘Inverse Images of Box Formulas in Modal Logic’, Studia Logica 101 (2013), 1031–1060.

Humberstone, Lloyd. ‘Replacement in Logic’, Journal of Philosophical Logic 42 (2013), 49–89.

Humberstone, Lloyd. ‘Aggregation and Idempotence’, to appear in Review of Symbolic Logic.

Humberstone, Lloyd. ‘Zolin and Pizzi: Defining Necessity from Noncontingency’, to appear in Erkenntnis.

Jones, Tessa. The Constitution of Events. The Monist 96(1): 73–86.

Kaplan, David M. The complex interplay between three-dimensional egocentric and allocentric spatial representation. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 36(5): 553–554.

Manolopoulos, Mark. ‘A Loving Attack on Caputo’s “Caputolism” and his Refusal of CommunismPolitical Theology 14.3: 378–389

Manolopoulos, Mark. ‘Caputo in a Nutshell: Two Introductory (and Slightly Critical) LecturesPostmodern Openings 4.2: 21–43

Manolopoulos, Mark. ‘Religious Diversity Within the Limits of Radical Neo-EnlightenmentJournal of Inter-Religious Dialogue 12 (Spring): 23–31

Oppy, Graham. The Best Argument against God. London: Palgrave-Macmillan.

Oppy, Graham. Lowe’s Ontological Argument. In C. Meister, J. Moreland and K. Sweis (eds.) Debating Christian Theism. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 72–84.

Oppy, Graham. Moreland’s Argument from Consciousness. In C. Meister, J. Moreland and K. Sweis (eds.) Debating Christian Theism. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 131–46.

Palmer, C., Paton, B., Hohwy, J., Enticott, P. [Movement under uncertainty: The effects of the rubber-hand illusion vary along the nonclinical autism spectrum]( MS Neuropsychologia copy.pdf). Neuropsychologia 51(10): 1942–1951.

Silva, Paul. Ordinary Objects and Series-Style Answers to the Special Composition Question. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly, 94: 69–88.

Silva, Paul. Epistemically self-defeating arguments and skepticism about intuition. Philosophical Studies 164: 579–589.

Simpson, Robert Mark. Un-Ringing the Bell: Mcgowan on Oppressive Speech and The Asymmetric Pliability of Conversations. Australasian Journal of Philosophy.

Sparrow, Robert. Gender eugenics? The ethics of PGD for intersex conditions. American Journal of Bioethics 13 (10): 29–38.

Sparrow, Robert. Better living through chemistry? A reply to Savulescu and Persson on “moral enhancement”. Journal of Applied Philosophy.

Sparrow, Robert. Sexism and human enhancement. Journal of Medical Ethics.

Savulescu, Julian & Robert Sparrow. Making better babies: Pros and cons. Monash Bioethics Review 31 (1): 36–59.


Undergraduate Study in Human Rights

4724314267_e69f64540d_qThe Philosophy Department oversees the administration of the Human Rights area of study within the Bachelor of Arts Degree.

Human rights is an interdisciplinary area of study, drawing upon units from International Studies, Politics, Criminology, Philosophy, and other areas.

For more information, go to the Human Rights page.


Adam Bartlett – New Adjunct Research Fellow

bartlett-adamThe Department is pleased to welcome Dr Adam Bartlett (PhD, Melbourne 2010), who has recently been appointed an Adjunct Research Fellow in the Philosophy Department. Adam’s research interests are in European philosophy, with special interests in Badiou and Plato.