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My Research

I am a Philosophy PhD student and my research is based in the areas of philosophy of Phenomenology & Ethics, and particularly the meeting of these two fields.

Phenomenology has been a popular philosophical field since its inception by Edmund Husserl around 1900 but there has been relatively little work applying the method of phenomenology to the questions of philosophical ethics, especially at the current time.

I believe this to be a great mistake and my work is based around and attempt to correct this and use the tools of phenomenology to give a richer, more complete answer to the questions of the foundation and structure of Ethics.

I aim to use the philosophies of Emmanuel Levinas and Max Scheler, the two phenomenologists who have made Ethics the centre of their philosophical enquiry, as a basis on which to build this new theory of Ethics, bringing in material from other 19th and 20th Century Continental philosophers, including Husserl, Edith Stein, Otto, Kiekegaard, Kant, Bergson, Collingwood, etc, and combining this with the insights of contemporary Analytic Intuitionism.

I believe that an irreducibly pluralist, serious approach to questions of value, including of Aesthetics (Beauty), of Morality (Good) and Religion (Holiness), and of the structure of human consciousness, is essential to understanding the deepest questions of human meaning and purpose.

I further argue that this cannot be done within current reductionist accounts of human value-experience, whether realist (Kantian, Utilitarian, Analytic Intuitionist) or irrealist (subjectivist, nihlist, expressionist, evolutionary) that aim to reduce human experience of value to a single principle.

To this end I am focussing on constructing a theory that describes ethical knowledge as based on intentional cognitive/affective input and rational schematisation of intuitive affective input. I am trying to precisely describe what logical requirements there would be for effective ethical knowledge on that basis, and how this may be achieved in the spread and development of general ethical principles in society.

My work is informed by a widespread interest in the study of Art, Religion, Theology Politics, History and all other areas where both value considerations & abstract schematised theories are of significant importance, as well as the way such qualitative value concepts are formed and asssessed in practical and theoretical situations by human beings.


A Thorough Introduction to Max Scheler's Phenomenological Ethics

Why Did Levinas consider Buber's philosophy insufficient as a theory of Inter-personal Encounter?

A Thorough Summary of Max Scheler's 'Formalism in Ethics & Non-Formal Ethics of Values'

The State of Analytic Ethical Intuitionism

 A complete list of all my papers can be found at my profile at

Main Supervisor:

Prof. Peter Poellner

Contact Details

P dot A dot Poellner at Warwick dot ac dot uk


Prof. David Smith

A dot D dot Smith at Warwick dot ac dot uk