Tyron Goldschmidt


Visiting Assistant Professor

Office: Tribble B302

E-mail: goldsctc[at]wfu.edu

Consultation Times: TR 10 – 11, or by appointment


Books: Berkeley’s Principles: Expanded and Explained, with S. Stapleford, New York: Routledge, 2016

Hume’s Enquiry: Expanded and Explained, with S. Stapleford, New York: Routledge, under contract

The Empiricists: Locke, Berkeley and Hume, with S. Stapleford, Routledge, under contract

Applied Ethics, with L. Jackson, Hackett Publishing, under contract

The Ontological Argument, Cambridge University Press, under contract

Edited Volumes: Idealism: New Essays in Metaphysics, Ed. with K. Pearce, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017

The Puzzle of Existence: Why Is There Something Rather than Nothing? (Ed.) New York: Routledge, 2013

Journal Articles: ‘The Promise of a New Past’, with S. Lebens, Philosophers’ Imprint, 17, 18 (2017), 1-25

‘An Advertisment of a Promise’, with S. Lebens, Journal of Analytic Theology, 5, 1 (2017), 629-36

‘Shifting the Focus While Conserving Commitments in Research Ethics’, Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, 42, 2 (2017): 103-13

‘Existence Puzzles and Probabilistic Explanations’, Journal of the American Philosophical Association 2, 3 (2016), 469-82

‘The Meaning of Meaning: Comments on Professor Metz’s Meaning in Life’, European Journal for Philosophy of Religion, 8, 2 (2016), 19-26

‘A Demonstration of the Causal Power of Absences’, Dialectica 70, 1 (2016), 85

‘Commanding Belief’, Ratio, 28, 2 (2015), 163-74; APJ essay competition winner for 2013

‘Jewish Responses to the Problem of Evil’, Philosophy Compass 9, 12 (2014), 894-905

‘Judaism, Reincarnation and Theodicy’, with E. Seacord, Faith & Philosophy, 30, 4 (2013), 393-417

‘Metaphysical Nihilism and Necessary Being’, Philosophia, 40 (2012), 799-820

‘The New Cosmological Argument’, Philosophia, 29 (2011), 267-88

Book Chapters: ‘The Argument from Numbers’, in J. Walls & T. Dougherty (Eds.), Two Dozen (or so) Arguments for God: The Plantinga Project, Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming

‘A Proof of Exodus: Judah HaLevy and Jonathan Edwards Walk into a Bar’, in S. Lebens, D. Rabinowitz and A. Segal (Eds.),  Jewish Thought in the Age of Analytic Philosophy: New Essays in the Philosophy of Judaism. Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming

‘Necessary Being’, Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Philosophy of Religion, S. Goetz and C. Tulliver (Eds.), forthcoming

‘The Necessity of Idealism’, with A. Segal, in T. Goldschmidt & K. Pearce (Eds.), Idealism: New Essays in Metaphysics, Oxford: Oxford University Press (2017), 34-49

‘The Afterlife in Judaism’, with A. Segal, in Y. Nagasawa & B. Matheson (Eds.), Palgrave Handbook on the Afterlife (2017), 107-27

‘Understanding the Question’, in T. Goldschmidt, (Ed.), The Puzzle of Existence, 1-21.

Reviews: ‘This Was From God: A Contemporary Theology of Torah and History’ by Jerome Yehuda Gellman, Journal of Analytic Theology, forthcoming

‘Arguing About Gods’ by Graham Oppy, Heythrop Journal 59, 3 (2018), 624-5

‘The Blackwell Companion to Natural Theology’ by W.L. Craig and J.P. Morgan, Eds. Heythrop Journal 59, 3 (2016), 627-8

‘Omissions’ by Randolph Clarke, Journal of Moral Philosophy, 15 (2018), 97-9

‘Skeptical Theism: New Essay’ by Trent Dougherty and Justin McBrayer (Eds.), European Journal for Philosophy of Religion, 9, 2 (2017), 231-4

‘The End of Philosophy of Religion’ by Nick Trakakis, Heythrop Journal, 55, 4, (2014), 753-4

‘Theism and Ultimate Explanation’ by Timothy O’Connor, Heythrop Journal 55, 1 (2014), 142-3

‘The Rainbow of Experience, Critical Trust, and God’ by Kai-Man Kwan, Faith & Philosophy, 29, 4 (2012), 472-8

‘Why There Is Something Rather Than Nothing’ by Bede Rundle, Heythrop Journal, 42, 2, (2011), 307-8

PHI 111: Basic Problems of Philosophy

This course introduces some big philosophical debates through dialogues. We’ll read dialogues about:

  • Free will: What is free will and do we have it?
  • Knowledge: How do you know that you’re not in the matrix?
  • God: Is there any evidence for or against the existence of God?
  • Abortion: Is abortion morally permissible? Is it ever obligatory?
  • Body and soul: Are we purely material beings or do we have souls?

And a few other questions.

PHI 113: Knowledge and Reality

This course will explore some big puzzles about:

  • Nothingness: Why is there something rather than nothing?
  • Free Will: What is free will? Do we have it?
  • Time: Is the present more real than the past or future?
  • Metaethics: What is rightness or wrongness? Are any actions objectively wrong?
  • Constitution: Is a ship anything over and above the sum of its planks?
  • Abstract objects: What are numbers? Are there really such things as numbers?
  • Skepticism: How do you know that you’re not in the matrix?

And a few other questions besides. We’ll have a lot of fun and friendly debate.

PHI 115: Introduction to Philosophy of Religion

In this course, we’ll explore big and cool questions about God and religion:

  • Are religion and science in conflict?
  • Why do bad things happen to good people?
  • What is the relationship between faith and reason?
  • Is there any evidence for or against the existence of God?
  • Could an all-powerful being know what it feels like to be a mouse?

And a few other questions besides. We’ll have a lot of fun and friendly debate.

PHI 164: Contemporary Moral Problems

In this course, we’ll debate about contemporary and controversial ethical questions:

  • Is the death penalty permissible? Is it wrong? Is it every obligatory?
  • Is abortion permissible? Is it wrong? Is it ever obligatory?
  • What about euthanasia? Our treatment of animals? Drugs? Pornography?

And a few other questions besides. We’ll have a lot of fun and friendly debate.

PHI 220: Logic

This course is an introduction to logic—the science of good reasoning. We’ll be covering:

  • Syllogistic logic
  • Inductive logic
  • Scientific reasoning
  • Informal fallacies
  • Basic propositional logic
  • Basic quantificational logic

And some history of logic too.

PHI342/642: Topics in Modern Philosophy

This course will focus on the works of George Berkeley and David Hume. They are among the most influential thinkers in the history of philosophy, and among the most delightful writers in the history of philosophy too. It’s not hard to get excited about their ideas. The arguments are direct, powerful and for radical conclusions: Berkeley tries to show that there are no material things, and Hume tries to show that we have no reason whatsoever for thinking that the sun will rise tomorrow! We’ll focus on their short classics—especially Berkeley’s Principles and Hume’s Enquiry—and see how contemporary philosophers take up their arguments too.

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Note to students: My classes fill up immediately. If your registration is late, you almost certainly won’t land a spot. I am inundated with requests to join the classes, but there is little I can do. Where space has permitted it, I have let in a couple of students on the wait list, and doubtless some students will change their minds and some places will open up. So the best advice I can give is to keep your eye on the wait list, and add your name in case any space does open up. But I can’t guarantee anything, even if you get on the wait list. Of course, feel free to e-mail me, especially if you have other queries about registration and courses, but the above can be my only response to requests to join.

Education: PhD, Philosophy, King’s College London

MPhil, Philosophy, University of Cambridge

BA, Philosophy & Psychology, University of the Witwatersrand

Research Areas: Metaphysics, Philosophy of Religion, Ethics

Medieval Philosophy, Early Modern Philosophy, Philosophy of Mind