Curriculum Vitae

Sharon Mason, Ph.D.

University of Central Arkansas
Department of Philosophy and Religion
201 Donaghey Ave.
Conway, AR 72035
Email: smason [at] uca [dot] edu
Web: https://sharonmason.me

Area of Research Specialization

Contemporary epistemology, especially theories of knowledge, the first-person perspective, self-knowledge, virtue epistemology, epistemic agency

Areas of Teaching Competence

Epistemology, early modern philosophy, philosophy of science, social epistemology, philosophy of mind, social metaphysics, philosophy of food

Employment

University of Central Arkansas, Department of Philosophy & Religion, Assistant Professor of Philosophy (2017-present)

University of Central Arkansas, Department of Philosophy & Religion, Visiting Assistant Professor  (2016-2017)

Indiana University, Department of Philosophy, Associate Instructor (2007-2016)

Waubonsee Community College, Department of Philosophy, Adjunct Faculty (2007-2013)

Northern Illinois University, Department of Philosophy, Teaching Assistant (2005-2006)

Education

Indiana University, Bloomington, Department of Philosophy

Ph.D. in Philosophy, minor in History and Philosophy of Science, granted June 2016

Northern Illinois University, Department of Philosophy

M.A. in Philosophy, granted August 2007

Cedarville University

B.A. in Philosophy, B.A. in Communications, granted May 2003. Graduated with highest honors.

Dissertation

Title: Knowledge and the First-Person Perspective

Dissertation Committee: Adam Leite (chair), Fred Schmitt, Gary Ebbs

Dissertation Summary:

I defend an account of the first-person perspective in which the unique view that a subject can and often does have of her own beliefs is the consequence of a particular kind of consciousness at the level of one’s first-order thoughts. I argue that two features that some philosophers have argued are necessary for an attitude to be within one’s first-person perspective—1) that one is able to occupy a deliberative stance toward an attitude, and 2) that one is able to avow an attitude—are also sufficient for that attitude to be within a person’s first-person perspective. This is the case even when that attitude is considered and/or expressed merely as a first-order thought. The first-person perspective, then, is much broader than alternative accounts that take the first-person view to be circumscribed by grammatical self-reference or by thoughts that employ one’s self-concept. While my account does not entail any particular commitments about knowledge, it reorients our understanding of the relevance of the first-person perspective to knowledge. In particular, it illuminates a limit for the view that the tension between internalism and externalism can be dissipated by distinguishing among various epistemological projects.

Fellowships, Honors, and Awards

  • Clark Essay Prize, Indiana University, May 2014
  • Myles and Peg Brand Graduate Fellowship in Philosophy, Indiana University, Academic Year 2012-2013
  • C. Mason and Madeline Myers Graduate Philosophy Award, Northern Illinois University, Academic Year 2006-2007
  • University Fellowship, Northern Illinois University, Academic Year 2006-2007
  • President’s Scholarship, Cedarville University, 1999-2003

Papers

  • “Reflection and Agency in Reflective Knowledge” (under review) | Full manuscript
  • “The Perspective of Rational Deliberation” (in progress) | Full manuscript
  • “Externalism for Doxastic Agents?” (in progress) | Full manuscript
  • “The Sophisticated Thermometer Problem” (in progress) | Abstract
  • “Agent Stances and Agent Awareness: A critical review of Brie Gertler’s defense of self-knowledge evidentialism” (in progress) | Abstract

Book Reviews

  • Review of Brett Coppenger and Michael Bergmann, eds. Intellectual Assurance: Essays on Epistemic Internalism. Oxford University Press, 2016. (Forthcoming in Philosophy in Review)
  • Review of Robert Audi, Means, Ends, and Persons: The Meaning and Psychological Dimensions of Kant’s Humanity Formula. Oxford University Press, 2015. (Forthcoming in Metapsychology Online)

Conference Presentations

  • “Externalism for Doxastic Agents?” (refereed)
    Tennessee Value and Agency Conference
    September 4-5, 2015: University of Tennessee-Knoxville
  • “The Perspective of Rational Deliberation” (refereed)
    American Philosophical Association, Central Division Meeting
    February 18-21, 2015: St. Louis, MO
  • “The Sophisticated Thermometer Problem” (invited)
    Valparaiso University, Department of Philosophy
    January 19, 2015: Valparaiso, IN
  • “Externalism for Doxastic Agents?” (invited)
    Northwestern University Epistemology Brownbag Series
    October 16, 2013: Chicago, IL
  • “The Perspective of Rational Deliberation” (invited)
    Brand Lecture, Indiana University, Department of Philosophy
    April 5, 2013: Bloomington, IN
  • “The Knowing Agent” (invited)
    Indiana University Graduate Student Colloquium Series
    February 12, 2010: Bloomington, IN
  • “Knowledge and Certainty: The case against dogmatism” (refereed)
    Midsouth Philosophy Conference
    February 22-23, 2008: Memphis, TN
  • “Ontology and Creativity: A critique of the metaphysics of music” (invited)
    Northern Illinois University Graduate Student Aesthetics Conference
    April 21-22, 2006: Dekalb, IL
  • “Justification in Context: A critique of contextualism” (invited)
    Northern Illinois University Graduate Student Epistemology Conference
    November 18-19, 2006: DeKalb, IL

Chaired Sessions and Commentaries

  • Chair for Colloquium Session “Circularity, Closure, and Meno Problems”, Central Division APA, March 2017: Kansas City, MO. (invited)
  • Chair for John Greco’s session “Testimony and the Transmission of Religious Knowledge”, Social Epistemology of Religious Belief Conference, October 8-10, 2015: Indiana University, Bloomington. (invited)
  • Commentator on Nellie Wieland, “Hearing the Voice of Competence”, Mid-South Philosophy Conference, February 22-23, 2008: Memphis, TN
  • Commentator for the Northern Illinois University Graduate Student Aesthetics Conference, April 21-22, 2006: DeKalb, IL

Other Professional Activity

  • Philosophy Department Climate Committee, Graduate Student Liason. Indiana University, Bloomington. 2015-2016. This committee focuses on promoting diversity in the IU philosophy department and in the discipline.
  • Guest Lecturer for Human Biology Seminar, Indiana University, Bloomington. September 17, 2015. Special Topic: “Food & Memory”
  • Epistemic Value & Normativity Reading Group, Indiana University, Bloomington. Summer 2015-present
  • Intensive Freshman Seminar Program. I was interviewed by student participants as a part of the “What is it like to be a philosopher?” component of the program. Indiana University, Bloomington. Summer, 2015
  • Graduate Colloquium Committee, Northern Illinois University, 2006-2007

Graduate Coursework (* indicates audited)

  • Department of Philosophy, Indiana University, Bloomington
    • Kierkegaard (Paul Vincent Spade)
    • Philosophy of Language (Gary Ebbs)
    • Austin and Epistemology (Mark Kaplan)
    • Agency and Normativity (Kevin Toh)
    • Plato (Michael Morgan)
    • Kant (Allen Wood)
    • Theories of Knowledge: Self-Knowledge (Adam Leite)
    • Social Metaphysics (Fred Schmitt)
    • Logical Theory (David McCarty)
    • Hume* (Fred Schmitt)
    • Aristotle’s Ethics and Politics* (Pieter Hasper)
  • Department of History and Philosophy of Science, Indiana University, Bloomington
    • Modern Philosophy of Science (Jordi Cat)
    • History of Biology (Sander Gliboff)
    • Philosophy of Time (Jordi Cat)
    • Survey of Contemporary Philosophy of Science (Elisabeth Lloyd)
  • Department of Philosophy, Northern Illinois University
    • Epistemology (Mylan Engel)
    • Hume (James King)
    • Logic (Tomis Kapitan)
    • 20th Century Analytic Philosophy (David Buller)
    • Aesthetics (William Tolhurst)
    • Contemporary Ethical Theories (Sharon Sytsma)
    • Contextualism (Mylan Engel)
    • Ancient Philosophy (Sharon Sytsma)
    • Metaphysics (Tomis Kapitan)
    • Kant’s Ethics (Sharon Sytsma)
    • Modality (Tomis Kapitan)
    • Feminism and Philosophy* (Jennifer Lackey)
    • Philosophy of Religion* (Mylan Engel)

Courses I am Prepared to Teach

Introductory Courses

  • Critical Thinking/Introductory Logic
  • Introduction to Philosophy
  • Introduction to Ethics

Intermediate/Advanced Courses

  • Epistemology
  • Early Modern Philosophy
  • Philosophy of Science
  • Symbolic Logic
  • Philosophy of Mind
  • Philosophy of Food

Advanced Undergraduate/Graduate Courses

  • Contemporary Analytic Epistemology
  • Self-Knowledge and the First-Person Perspective
  • Virtue Epistemology

Courses I could teach with advance notice:

  • History of Epistemology
  • Feminist Philosophy
  • Virtues: Moral & Intellectual
  • Social Epistemology and/or Metaphysics
  • Philosophy of Religion

References

Adam Leite, Ph.D.
Department of Philosophy
Indiana University
aleite [at ] indiana [dot] edu
Fred Schmitt, Ph.D.
Department of Philosophy
Indiana University
fschmitt [at] indiana [dot] edu
Gary Ebbs, Ph.D.
Department of Philosophy
Indiana University
gebbs [at] indiana [dot] edu
Tim O’Connor, Ph.D.
Department of Philosophy
Indiana University
toconnor [at] indiana [dot] edu
Allen Wood, Ph.D.
Department of Philosophy
Indiana University
awwood [at] indiana [dot] edu
Charles Harvey, Ph.D.
Department of Philosophy and Religion
University of Central Arkansas
charlesh [at] uca [dot] edu
Dean Cynthia Sparr
Communications, Humanities, & Fine Arts
Waubonsee Community College
csparr [at] waubonsee [dot] edu
Leah Savion, Ph.D.
Department of Philosophy
Indiana University
lsavion [at] indiana [dot] edu