Home‎ > ‎Highlighted Philosophers‎ > ‎

Ruth Chang: July 2014

posted Jul 8, 2014, 4:48 PM by Peggy DesAutels   [ updated Jul 8, 2014, 8:22 PM ]

Ruth Chang
Rutgers University

Ruth Chang is Professor of Philosophy at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. She earned her A.B. from Dartmouth, J.D. from Harvard Law School, and DPhil. from Balliol College, Oxford University, where she was a Junior Research Fellow. She has held visiting appointments at the UCLA philosophy department and at the University of Chicago Law School. 

Chang’s current research focuses on normative theory, metaethics, axiology, and the philosophy of practical reason. She is editor of Incommensurability, Incomparability, and Practical Reason, and author of Making Comparisons Count. Much of her current research is about why incomparability, and not incommensurability, is the important notion for philosophers interested in practical reason and axiology. Her idea that items can be ‘on a par’ – neither better, worse, or equal to one another and yet comparable – has been influential in both philosophical circles and in the public domain, where the idea was introduced in her TED.com talk on the topic of hard choices  http://www.ted.com/talks/ruth_chang_how_to_make_hard_choices  which in the first two weeks of its release had over a million views. Chang also has interests in the metaphysics of values and reasons and in thinking about how human agency connects with the natural world. She is currently working on a view about human agency that builds on insights from Kant and Sartre. 

Chang has been the recipient of various fellowships and awards including the ACLS Charles Ryskamp Fellowship, a National Humanities Center Fellowship, the Rockefeller Fellowship at the Princeton Center for Human Values, and the Safra Fellowship at the Harvard Kennedy School. She is an Associate Editor at Nous, on the editorial boards of Legal Theory, and Social, Political, and Legal Theory, and an advisory editor for the new APA Journal of Philosophy, whose mandate is to publish ‘new ideas’ articles. She is Ombudsperson for NonDiscrimination at the APA and a member of the APA Committee on the Status of Women.