Philip P. Hanson

Associate Professor of Philosophy


  • B.A.(Hon) Philosophy, 1970: University of Calgary
  • M.A. Philosophy, 1972: Princeton University
  • Ph.D. Philosophy, 1975: Princeton University

Areas of Specialization

Analytic Epistemology and Metaphysics, and Philosophies of Mind, Mathematics, and Logic.

Selected Publications

  • “Return of the A Priori,” co-authored with Bruce Hunter, in Return of the A Priori, Canadian Journal of Philosophy Supplementary Vol. 18, co-edited with Bruce Hunter (Calgary, 1992).
  • Information, Language and Cognition: Vancouver Studies in Cognitive Science Vol 1 (editor), Oxford University Press (New York, 1993).
  • “Cognitive Content and Semantics,” in The Logical Foundations of Cognition: Vancouver Studies in Cognitive Science Vol. 4, edited by John Macnamara and Gonzalo E. Reyes, Oxford University Press (New York) , 1994.
  • “Physics, Logic and the Phenomenal,” critical notice of Gregory Mulhauser’s Mind Out of Matter: Topics in the Physical Foundations of Consciousness and Cognition; in Minds and Machines, 10, (2000) 391-400.
  • “Mind, Matter and Supervenience: A Reply to Mulhauser,” in Minds and Machines, 11, (2001) 301-306.
  • “Darwin’s Algorithm, Natural Selective History, and Intentionality Naturalized,” in Naturalism, Evolution, and Intentionality, Canadian Journal of Philosophy, Supplementary Vol. 27, J.S. McIntosh (ed.), (2001) 53-83.
  • Review of Mark Quentin Gardiner’s Semantic Challenges to Realism: Dummett and Putnam, in University of Toronto Quarterly, Vol. 71 no. 1 (2001).
  • “Idealism, Skepticism, and Internal Relations: remarks on Hymers’s Philosophy and its Epistemic Neuroses,” Dialogue, Vol. XLIII, No. 3 (2004) 577-586.
  • Review of Gregg Rosenberg’s A Place For Consciousness: Probing the Deep Structure of the Natural World, in Philosophical Books, Vol. 47 No. 2 (April 2006) 170-173.
  • “Is Logic All in Our Heads? From Naturalism to Psychologism,” with Jeffry Pelletier and Renee Elio, Studia Logica Vol. 86 (2008) 1-63.

Selected Presentations

  • “Three Grades of Conceptual Involvement in Naturalistic Epistemology,” Philosophy Department, Trent University, October 1998.
  • “Explaining the Inexplicability,” Consciousness 2000 Conference, Center For the Study of Consciousness, U of Arizona, Tuscon, April 2000.
  • “Two Conceptions of Levels,” Canadian Society for the History and Philosophy of Science Meetings, Dalhausie University, Halifax, May 2003.
  • “Emergent Self-Organisation as order For Free,” Australasian Association of Philosophy Meetings, ANU, Canberra, July 2006.
  • “A Priori Methods and the Concrete World,” invited contribution to a symposium on the a priori at the Pacific APA meetings, Pasedena CA, March 2008.
  • “What’s Model Theory Got To Do With It?”, invited comments on Gila Sher’s “Is Logic in the Mind or in the World?”, Pacific APA meetings, Vancouver, April 2009.
  • “The Contingency of Logic,” Department of Philosophy, U of Victoria, January 2010.
  • “Field’s Deflationary Philosophy of Logic,” UBC Epistemology Workshop, March 2010.

Recent Graduate Seminars

  • The A Priori
  • Naturalism and Logic
  • Causation, Explanation, and Realism
  • Field's Philosophies of Truth and of Logic
  • The Applicability of Mathematics

Some Recent M.A. 'Professional Papers' Supervised

"“Mathematics and Indispensibility”; “On Universals as Parts of Objects”; “Macroscopic Irreducible Probability and Emergent Phenomena”; “On Logical Revision: Field, Maddy, and a Hybrid Proposal”; “Disagreement: What’s It Really Good For?”; “Maddy and Balaguer on the Methodological Undecidability of Mathematical Content”


This instructor is currently not teaching any courses.