Current Work

Many of my current research projects involve Kant in some form or another, with some additional forays into virtue ethics.  In Kantian ethics, I'm working on vices like contempt and mockery, as well as general themes about Kantian moral progress and positive moral emotions, like love.  I'm particularly interested in the social dimensions of moral evil and moral improvement in Kant, especially his insistence on the centrality of truth-telling and its relationship to social trust.  I've also been thinking a lot about the role of hope in Kantian ethics and the role that it plays in the construction of moral communities.  In virtue ethics, I'm focusing on practical wisdom, which has been puzzling me for several decades now.  

More generally, I'm continuing work on the main themes of my second book (Minding the Gap), which focused on the way that social conventions and environments shape our capacities for moral improvement.  I'm interested in the practical question of how we build actual communities that support our moral growth and enable our flourishing in non-ideal circumstances.  

Someday I hope to indulge my adoration of Jane Austen and write something about the intertwining roles of moral norms, social conventions, and aesthetics in her novels.   

Works in Progress 

"Smugness as a Kantian Vice," in Virtues and Vices of Partiality, ed Eric Silverman, forthcoming from Routledge.    

"Loving What Matters: Affective Orientation and Moral Judgment in Kantian Ethics," committed to a volume on practical wisdom, edited by Jennifer Frey, for an Oxford University Press series edited by Nancy Snow 

“Heroes Always Win: Virtue, Flourishing, and Moral Education,” committed to a conference volume edited by Candace Vogler and published by the Jubilee Centre at the University of Birmingham 

"Evil Together: The Social Dimensions of Kantian Vice "

"How to Value Oneself" 

"Trustworthiness as a Kantian Moral Duty"    

"The Moral Boundaries of Mockery"

"Contempt and the Common Good"

"Faith in People and their Projects"

"On Helping Badly"