Phillip Barron

Phillip Barron

Pre-Doctoral Fellow

John R. Howard Hall 229, MSC: 45

My role in the classroom is two-fold: to create an inclusive environment and provoke students to think critically about some of the world’s most enduring philosophical questions. As an instructor, my role is to listen and clarify. Philosophy underwrites all other disciplines (which is why the “Ph.” in PhD stands for “philosophy”), so studying philosophy is about learning how to appreciate perplexity, how to think and write clearly, and how to understand complexity across the disciplines.

Currently, I am a pre-doctoral fellow at Lewis & Clark College, while I am writing my dissertation to complete a PhD in Philosophy at the University of Connecticut. I work on issues of meaning and personal identity through Philosophy of Language and Aesthetics, combining these interests by focusing on the literary arts. My research interests include contemporary phenomenology, philosophy of mind, Daoism, Zen (especially nonclassical logics), Latin American philosophy, and sub-Saharan African philosophy (especially from Ghana).

I am also a poet. As a practicing artist, I respect empirical data on what communities of artists actually do - to balance out philosophers’ tendency toward armchair theorizing about art. In 2011, I founded and edited the poetry journal OccuPoetry, anthologizing poetry and art of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

During my free time, I love to cook, bike, read, and hike—sometimes all in the same day.

Personal Website

A profile in the PioLog

Academic Credentials

PhD in philosophy, University of Connecticut, expected May 2021
MFA 2016 in poetry, San Francisco State University
MA 2003 in philosophy, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
BA 2000 University of Massachusetts, Amherst


Fall 2021 Courses:

PHIL 103: Ethics
MWF 12:40-1:40pm

Fundamental issues in moral philosophy and their application to contemporary life..

Prerequisites: None.

PHIL 217: Selfhood and Personal Identity
MW 3:00-4:30pm

Introduces students to philosophy through a specific theme or topic. Students investigate how philosophy is represented and enacted in a specific area as well as by participating in its enactment. Possible topics include philosophy and existentialism, philosophy and Latin America, philosophy and literature, philosophy and race, gender, class.

Prerequisites: None.



What Comes from a Thing: poems. Fourteen Hills Press, 2015. Winner of the 2019 Nicolás Guillén Outstanding Book Award for philosophical literature and the 2015 Michael Rubin Book Award.


Professional Experience

Previously, I have taught philosophy courses at the University of Connecticut, California State University at Sacramento, Woodland Community College, and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. I also worked in the digital humanities at the National Humanities Center, an institute for advanced study in North Carolina, and taught digital humanities courses at the University of California, Davis.