Announcing our Laurance S. Rockefeller Visiting Faculty Fellows for 2020-21!

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Laurance S. Rockefeller Visiting Professor for Distinguished Teaching 2020-2021

Christia Mercer, Columbia University
Christia Mercer is the Gustave M. Berne Professor of Philosophy at Columbia University, editor of Oxford Philosophical Concepts, and co-editor of Oxford New Histories of Philosophy, a book series devoted to making philosophy more inclusive. In 2017 she initiated the Center for New Narratives in Philosophy at Columbia and in 2018 she created Just Ideas, an educational program in Brooklyn’s high security Metropolitan Detention Center. Among other awards, she is the recipient of Guggenheim, ACLS, Humboldt, and Radcliffe Institute Fellowships, and is the current president of the American Philosophical Association, Eastern Division. Mercer has been honored with Columbia’s two most prestigious teaching awards, the 2008 Columbia College Great Teacher Award, and the 2012 Mark van Doren Award, which annually recognizes a professor for “commitment to undergraduate instruction, as well as for humanity, devotion to truth and inspiring leadership.”

As the LSR Visiting Professor for Distinguished Teaching at Princeton's Center for Human Values, she will be finishing a book project, Feeling the Way to Truth: Women, Reason, and the Development of Modern Philosophy, which argues that late medieval women contributed significantly to the development of modern philosophy and so that the history of philosophy needs to be rewritten.

Laurance S. Rockefeller Visiting Faculty Fellows 2020-2021

Elizabeth Cohen, Syracuse University
Elizabeth F. Cohen is Professor of Political Science at Syracuse University and Associate Editor of the American Journal of Political Science. She is the author of four books: Illegal: How America’s Lawless Immigration Regime Threatens Us All (Basic Books 2020); The Political Value of Time: Citizenship, Duration, and Democratic Justice (Cambridge University Press, March 2018); Semi-Citizenship in Democratic Politics (Cambridge University Press, 2009); and Citizenship (with Cyril Ghosh) (Polity Press, 2019). In addition to her scholarly writing, Elizabeth has also published op-eds in newspapers such as the Atlantic, the Washington Post and Politico. Elizabeth’s research interests focus on immigration, contemporary political theory, justice, citizenship, and rights. At Princeton she will work on a book about the political significance of line-waiting and first-come-first-served as a distributive principle. She is also researching the rise of short-term immigration and the casualization of citizenship in the contemporary United States. 

Mathilde Cohen, University of Connecticut
Mathilde Cohen is a Professor of Law at the University of Connecticut and formerly a research fellow at the CNRS in France. She works in the fields of constitutional law, health law, comparative law, food law, and race, gender and the law. Her research centers on foundational questions related to bodies, nourishment, and reproduction in domains where legal regulation does not yet exist or has not yet crystallized into a regulatory regime and the normative questions are contested. She has analyzed the regulation of bodily substances such as milk and placenta as raising key issues of social justice. She is also writing about French eating practices, arguing that food is used to reinforce whiteness as the dominant racial identity in France. At Princeton, she will work on the right to express milk. Her project addresses the ambivalent status of expressing milk to feed children in North American and European political, legal, and parenting cultures.

Janice Dowell, Syracuse University
Janice Dowell is a professor in the department of philosophy at Syracuse University.  She has published work on topics in the philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, metaphysics, metaethics, and philosophical methodology.  Currently, she is working on a book on deontic modal expressions, which intersects issues in the philosophy of language, linguistics, and ethics. 

Luara Ferracioli, The University of Sydney
Dr Luara Ferracioli is Senior Lecturer in Political Philosophy at the University of Sydney. She was awarded her PhD from the Australian National University, and was a Global Leaders Fellow at Oxford and Princeton in 2011-2013. Prior to her appointment at the University of Sydney, she was an assistant professor in Political Theory at the University of Amsterdam. Her main areas of research are the ethics of immigration and family justice, and her most recent work has been published in the Journal of Applied Ethics, Philosophical Studies, Journal of Legal Studies and Philosophical Quarterly. At the moment, she is completing a book on the ethics of immigration. In Princeton, she will be working on a book project entitled "Procreation, Adoption and the Goods of Childhood"

Jessica Flanigan, University of Richmond
Jessica Flanigan is the Richard L. Morrill Chair in Ethics and Democratic Values and an associate professor of Leadership Studies and Philosophy, Politics, Economics, and Law (PPEL) at the University of Richmond. Her research addresses topics in bioethics and political philosophy, with a particular focus on public health ethics, economic justice, and the enforceability of rights. She is the author of Pharmaceutical Freedom (OUP 2017) and the co-author of Debating Sex Work (OUP 2019). At Princeton, she will complete a book project about the ethics of pregnancy and procreation.

Melissa Ganz, Marquette University [Deferring to 2021-22]
Melissa J. Ganz is an Associate Professor of English at Marquette University.  She works on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British literature and culture, with a particular focus on the relationship between literature, law, and ethics. She also has broad interests in gender studies, transatlantic studies, and the history of the novel. Her research is driven by a desire to understand how debates about law and justice have shaped literary texts in the past and how literature can help us think through questions of law and justice that remain of concern to this day. She holds a Ph.D. in English Literature from Yale, a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and an M.A. in American Studies from Yale. Before moving to Marquette, she held postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard and Stanford.

Melissa’s first book, Public Vows: Fictions of Marriage in the English Enlightenment (University of Virginia Press, June 2019), offers a new account of the marriage plot, arguing for the centrality of nuptial law to early fiction and of novels to nuptial regulation.  She has also written on legal and ethical questions in novels by Jane Austen, George Eliot, Henry James, and Robert Louis Stevenson, and on courtroom storytelling in nineteenth-century America. Her current projects include a study of eighteenth-century British literature and penal reform, a study of nineteenth-century fiction and criminal responsibility, and a series of essays on Romantic women writers’ engagements with moral philosophy.  She is looking forward to joining the UCHV community.

Alexandre Lefebvre, The University of Sydney [Deferring to 2021-22]
Alexandre Lefebvre is Associate Professor in the Department of Government and International Relations, and the Department of Philosophy, at the University of Sydney. His research interests are in political theory, the history of political thought, and French philosophy. For the past several years he has been working on the idea that leading legal and political doctrines of our time can serve as the foundation for rich and rewarding ways of life. In Human Rights as a Way of Life: on Bergson’s Political Philosophy (Stanford UP 2013) and Human Rights and the Care of the Self (Duke UP 2018), he argued that human rights can enable ethical practices of self-transformation to help people to become more joyful, resilient, present, and loving. At Princeton, he will be working on a new book project, Liberalism as a Way of Life (for Princeton UP), which extends this idea to liberal values as the basis for a fulfilling way of life.

Errol Lord, University of Pennsylvania
Errol Lord is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania. He works in ethical theory, epistemology, aesthetics, philosophy of perception, and the philosophy of action. He is the author of The Importance of Being Rational (OUP, 2018), co-editor of Weighing Reasons (OUP, 2016), as well as the author of many articles in journals and edited collections. At Princeton he will be working on a project centered on the prospects of a new field of inquiry into ethics that is analogous to art criticism. This involves theoretical work motivating such a field and writing essays to be compiled into a book that contribute to the field. 

David Sobel, Syracuse University
David Sobel is Guttag Professor of Ethics and Political Philosophy at Syracuse University. Much of his work has focused on understanding the ways in which what one values shapes one’s well-being and practical reasons. Some of his papers on such topics are collected in his From Valuing to Value (OUP, 2017). Despite this research focus, he is strongly engaged by a great many topics in ethics and political philosophy. He is a founding co-editor of Oxford Studies in Political Philosophy and co-editor of the blog PEA Soup.  If he could have chosen his talents, he would be a stand-up comedian.