Stephen Puryear

I am an assistant professor of philosophy and affiliate of the Classical Studies program at NC State. Before arriving in Raleigh in 2008, I earned my Ph.D. in philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh (2006) and spent two years as a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University.

My research interests include the German philosophical tradition, especially Leibniz, Kant, and Schopenhauer, as well as historical and contemporary work in metaphysics, ethics, and political philosophy. Much of my published work concerns the philosophy of Leibniz, but I have also written about Berkeley's idealism, Schopenhauer's moral philosophy, Frege's philosophy of language, and the metaphysics of space and time. My main project at present is a book on Leibniz. Besides that, I continue to think about various topics in Schopenhauer's philosophy, especially his ethics; moral and political philosophy (obligation, consent, rights, normative theories, animal ethics, etc.); and metaphysics (infinity, continuity, space, time, etc.). For more on my published work, see my publications page.

I typically teach two of the department's offerings in the history of philosophy: Ancient Philosophy (PHI 300) and Early Modern Philosophy (PHI 301).  These courses cover the two greatest periods in the history of philosophy and provide the background necessary for understanding much of the work being done in philosophy today. Along with logic, they form the backbone of the philosophy curriculum.

I also supervise a number of projects for our writing course in the history of philosophy (PHI 495). If you are a philosophy major enrolled in PHI 300 or PHI 301 and you would like me to supervise your PHI 495 project, please contact me toward the beginning of the semester. You will need to print this form, fill it out, and bring it to me for my signature.