Faculty in Philosophy

Dr. Rodney C. Roberts
Assoc. Prof. of Philosophy
Office: Brewster A-440

Rodney C. Roberts's ancestors were among the eighty Africans enslaved aboard the brig Camden and brought to Edenton, North Carolina in 1786 to build and labor upon the Somerset Place Plantation in Creswell, North Carolina. Raised in the Bronx, New York, he attended New York City Public Schools and entered the U.S. Navy after graduating from high school in January of his senior year. During his decade of service he deployed twice to the Western Pacific and was a crewmember aboard the nuclear attack submarine USS Pintado (SSN 672) when it became the thirteenth submarine to surface through the ice at the North Pole. Subsequently, he operated and maintained remotely operated vehicle (ROV) electronic systems as part of a special projects detachment and served as a scuba diver in the open-ocean launch and recovery of manned submersibles. As an instructor during his final tour of duty he taught submarine electronic surveillance measures systems theory, operations and maintenance.

Following his tenure as an instructor at Seattle Central Community College while completing his doctoral dissertation in social and political philosophy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Dr. Roberts was appointed Assistant Professor of Philosophy, University of Hawai'i at Mānoa in 1998. He arrived at East Carolina University in 2003, became a Fulbright Scholar (University of Cape Town, South Africa, 2005), and was promoted to Associate Professor of Philosophy in 2007. [ CV ]

Dr. Roberts holds a black belt (shodan) in Kyokushin, a traditional style of bare-knuckle, full-contact karate. He is also an avid scuba diver, having received his pre-certification training in advanced wreck diving and decompression procedures from John Chatterton, one of world's foremost deep-wreck divers.

Selected Publications

" Race, Rectification, and Apology," in The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Race, Naomi Zack, ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2017), pp. 516-525.

" Are Some of the Things Faculty Do to Maximize Their Student Evaluation of Teachers Scores Unethical?" Journal of Academic Ethics 14 (2016): 133-48.

" The Morality of Using 'Nigger'," in Deirdre Golash, ed. Freedom of Expression in a Diverse World (Dordrecht: Springer, 2010), 87-101.

" The American Value of Fear and the Indefinite Detention of Terrorist Suspects," Public Affairs Quarterly 21 (2007): 405-19.