The Academic Minute for 2018.02.26-03.02


Academic Minute from 2.26 – 3.02

Monday, February 26th
Christian Miller – Wake Forest University
The Character Gap
Christian B. Miller holds a B.A. in philosophy from Princeton University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame. His main areas of research are meta-ethics, moral psychology, moral character, action theory, and philosophy of religion. He is the A. C. Reid Professor of Philosophy at Wake Forest University and Philosophy Director of the Beacon Project (, funded by the Templeton Religion Trust. He was the Director of the Character Project (, which was funded by $5.6 million in grants from the John Templeton Foundation and Templeton World Charity Foundation. He is the author of over 80 papers as well as three books with Oxford University Press, Moral Character: An Empirical Theory (2013), Character and Moral Psychology (2014), and The Character Gap: How Good Are We? (forthcoming 2017). He is also the editor or co-editor of Essays in the Philosophy of Religion (Oxford University Press), Character: New Directions from Philosophy, Psychology, and Theology (Oxford University Press), Moral Psychology, Volume V: Virtue and Character (MIT Press), Integrity, Honesty, and Truth-Seeking (Oxford University Press), and The Continuum Companion to Ethics (Continuum Press).

Tuesday, February 27th
Kate Manne – Cornell University
​​I’m an assistant professor of the Sage School of Philosophy at Cornell University, where I’ve been teaching since 2013. Before that, I was a junior fellow at theHarvard Society of Fellows from 2011 to 2013. I did my graduate work in philosophy at MIT from 2006 to 2011, with the generous support of a General Sir John Monash scholarship. I was an undergraduate at the University of Melbourne (my hometown), where I studied philosophy, logic, and computer science.

Now, I do moral philosophy (especially metaethics and moral psychology). feminist philosophy, and social philosophy. I also enjoy writing opinion pieces, essays, and reviews for a wider audience.

If you want to get a quick sense of my interests, I was interviewed by Justin Caouette for the blog of the APA (American Philosophical Association) in January 2016. I was also interviewed by Clifford Sosis about a wide range of topics for his website, “What is it Like to be a Philosopher?” in January 2018.

I recently published an academic/trade “crossover” book called Down Girl: The Logic of Misogyny (Oxford University Press: New York, 2018) about the nature, function, and persistence of misogyny. You can read more about it at

Wednesday, February 28th
Christine Blackburn – Texas A&M University
Weaknesses in the Global Supply Chain
Dr. Blackburn received her PhD in 2015 from Washington State University as part of the Individual Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program. This program requires specialization in a minimum of three fields. Dr. Blackburn chose political science, communication, and veterinary clinical sciences/global animal health. For her doctoral work, she constructed a mathematical model that allows for quantified policy and communication inputs to determine how different disease intervention policies and communication strategies impact the spread of a disease outbreak. Following the completion of her doctoral degree, Dr. Blackburn worked as a postdoctoral researcher in the Field Disease Investigation Unit in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Washington State University. During this appointment, she worked on a variety of projects, including seasonal prevalence of E. coli in dairy and beef cattle, health differences from feeding dairy calves milk replacer vs. real milk, and the impact of Bifidobacterium on the health development of dairy calves. Dr. Blackburn is currently a postdoctoral researcher with the Scowcroft Institute of International Affairs in the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M, conducting research on various aspects of pandemic disease policy and control.

Thursday, March 1st
Nicholas Syrett – University of Kansas
Child Marriage
Nicholas L. Syrett studies gender, sexuality, and childhood in the nineteenth- and twentieth-century United States. He is a coeditor of Age in America: The Colonial Era to the Present (2015) and author of two books: The Company He Keeps: A History of White College Fraternities (2009) and American Child Bride: A History of Minors and Marriage in the United States (2016). He has also published articles on queer U.S. history in American StudiesGendersGLQ, the Journal of the History of Sexuality, and the Pacific Historical Review.

Friday, March 2nd
Marsha Gordon – North Carolina State University
The Water Cooler Event of 1983: The Day After
Marsha Gordon is the author, most recently, of Film is Like a Battleground: Sam Fuller’s War Movies (Oxford University Press, 2017) and is currently completing a book on Race and Nontheatrical Film for Duke University Press, co-edited with Dr. Allyson Nadia Field. Gordon does a monthly show, “Movies on the Radio,” with NC Museum of Art film curator Laura Boyes & Frank Stasio, on 91.5/WUNC’s “The State of Things.”


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