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Faculty in Philosophy



Dr. John Collins
Assoc. Prof. of Philosophy
Philosophy Program Director
Office: Brewster A-335
252-328-6112
collinsjo@ecu.edu

I am the advisor for philosophy majors and the philosophy program director. Talk to me if you are interested in majoring or minoring in philosophy.

I have a PhD in philosophy from the University of California at Santa Barbara, and a BA in philosophy from Carleton College, in Northfield, MN. I was hired by ECU in 2001. This is what I looked like then. 

My main research interests are in philosophy of mind and philosophy of language - particularly their intersection, theories of mental and semantic content - and more recently in philosophy of religion and philosophy of law. Here are links to my published papers and my curriculum vitae.

I teach courses in philosophy of religion, philosophy of law, ethics, philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, modern philosophy, ancient philosophy, and philosophy of sport.

Here are a few philosophical questions I sometimes think about:

  • Is praying to God for an A on your exam academic dishonesty?

  • If a person were born blind but learned to distinguish a cube from a sphere by touch, and had his sight restored as an adult, would he be able to tell which is the cube and which the sphere by sight alone?

  • Lois Lane knows that Superman has x-ray vision. Does that mean that she also knows Clark Kent has x-ray vision?

  • Should one who succeeds in committing murder be punished more harshly than one who attempts murder but fails?

  • Are theists' solutions to the problem of evil any better than the diabolists' (who believe in an evil god) solutions to the problem of good?

  • Is there just one fact, and all true sentences describe it in different ways?

  • Is there any good reason to vote in large elections?

  • What makes a good life?