What I Do

My main body of research concerns how ancient thinkers from the Presocratics to Aristotle sought to explain (what we'd now think of as) the structure and composition of ordinary objects. I am especially interested in clarifying how Plato fits into this tradition, and showing how Plato's conception of Forms was developed against this background. In particular, I believe that this perspective can help explain the way in which Forms are causes (as they are said to be in the Phaedo), which in turn helps us see that this sort of causality is fundamental to what Forms are. I am now developing this work into a monograph, titled The causal origins of Plato’s Forms.

In addition to my work on ancient metaphysics, I am more generally interested in elucidating Plato's methods as a writer, and demonstrating the various specific ways his dialogues advance philosophical positions beyond what is explicitly argued by their speakers. This interest has led me to write several standalone papers on diverse aspects of Plato's thought, including his ethics, epistemology, and aesthetics. Outside of ancient Greek philosophy, I have teaching and research interests in the philosophy of literature and the philosophy of emerging technologies.