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The University of Connecticut Philosophy Department Newsletter Vol. V, No. 3 October 2002

            General Editors: Anne Hiskes and Austen Clark 
            Designer:  Shelly Burelle

Welcome to the sixteenth issue of Cogitamus!  This issue covers news for the period of May 1 - Sept. 30, 2002. 

Highlights:  Welcome to our new graduate students. Read about them below.


Special Events



In addition JC has been invited back to the Arche program at St Andrews in Scotland, where he will spend some time in November working on truth, vagueness, and modality.  (Alas, he will spend only a little time there, given teaching commitments!)


The software developed by Austen for the self-paced logic project is also available (along with documentation and a report of the project) at

The latter distribution does not include any of the actual test items.



Work in Progress





Alumni News

He is also the author of a forthcoming article in Teaching Philosophy  addressing the problem of how to teach students who cheat, particularly in ethics courses.  Joel also contributes regularly to the magazine Philosophy Now with his column "Moral (and other) Moments" and occasionally to the New Haven Register. But he says that these contributions pale by comparison to having finally achieved guest columnist status in the "Focal Point" section of Sky and Telescope Magazine (November '02 issue) in which he cites Kant on morality and the starry heavens. He is also the author of a forthcoming article in The Connecticut Journal of Science Education in which he quotes the wise sayings of an obscure philosopher named "John Troyer". 

Summer News and Life Outside Manchester Hall

Welcome to the new Philosophy Graduate Students!

          Each new student was asked to write a brief introduction for himself or herself.

Richard Brown

I was born in Los Angeles California and attended school in San Francisco (SFSU). My interests lie in the philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, philosophy of biology (especially neuroscience), and the philosophy of psychology. I am also interested in Ancient philosophy.

I am currently finishing up a study entitled "Event-related Gamma Potentials Demonstrate Perceptual Quanta in the Visual Modality" for the 42nd SPR meeting. In it I present evidence that, as Llinas showed for the auditory modality, percepts are bound in discrete quanta by distinct 40Hz waveforms. I am also working on a paper, "We Both Know That You Know That I Know" in which I argue that even though knowledge is closed under known implication, and this may lead to skepticism, it shouldn't bother us, because we can have knowledge in skeptical scenarios. I am also busy trying to flesh out my own theory of qualia that I have tentatively called 'referentialism'. This theory is meant to oppose representationism (which seems to be the dominant view).

Chi Kit Lam

I grew up in Hong Kong, and received a BA in Film Studies at University of California, Irvine, then a Masters in Philosophy at Claremont Graduate University.  I am interested in Chinese Moral Theory (Confucianism and Daoism), and in Comparative Philosophy. I am specifically interested in the similarity between the care elements in Chinese Philosophy and in Feminism; and between responsibility to others in Confucianism and the project of radical freedom found in humanist existentialism. 

Although I have previously visited Toronto, Buffalo, and Niagara Falls, this is the first time I have lived on the East Coast of the United States, and a project of mine is to visit various east coast cities:  New York, Boston, Providence, etc.

Boram Lee

I have a B.A. in Philosophy and East Asian studies from Oberlin College, and a Masters in East Asian Languages and Cultures from Columbia University.  I am interested in Chinese and Western Ethics and Comparative Philosophy.  I hope to study Confucian philosophical classics and Western theories of justice in detail.

Jason Leppaluoto

I am originally from Gwinn, Michigan, a small town not far from the shores of Lake Superior.  Although I did not realize it at the time, I first became interested in philosophy in high school: I became fascinated by statements from my peers such as, "I could get good grades if I wanted."  Such statements made me wonder: isn't the wanting a necessary component of the ability?  I received a B.A. in Philosophy from Luther College, and an M.S. in Information from the University of Michigan.  I have spent the past five years as a systems librarian at an Air Force Base library in New Mexico. 

My current areas of interest include Philosophy of Social Science (especially Information Science), Philosophical Psychology, Philosophy of Mind, Identity, Logic, and Pragmatism.  I am particularly interested in self-knowledge and how individuals orient themselves to society and environment.  My hobbies include hiking, backpacking, racquetball, tennis, chess, and (someday, I hope) kayaking.

Sarah Lisitano

After I earned a B.A. in Philosophy and Political Science at Allegheny College in Pennsylvania, I did two years of National Service in AmeriCorps in the area of special education.  I decided to pursue graduate study with the hopes of  combining my interests in teaching and philosophy.  Given my Political Science background, I have (so far) been drawn to Social and Political philosophy, and to Ethics.  

Outside of academics, I have a strong interest in Native American culture and am looking forward to making another trip to South Dakota, where I spent some time last summer at the Standing Rock Lakota Reservation in the town of Little Eagle.

Jesse Patterson

I grew up in Glastonbury, CT and received my Business Finance degree from University of Connecticut in May of 2002. My working knowledge of business and awareness of ethics from my philosophy classes caused me to question the logistics of our society's pursuit of Capitalism on a global level. Instead of starting a career in Business, I wish to help educate people about the importance of ethical responsibility in our current market-oriented society. 

I enjoy playing the guitar, bass and drums, and am always looking for the next great song.

Andrea Purton

I have a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Concordia in Montreal, and a MA from Dalhousie University in Halifax. I am interested in philosophy of mind, and I am particularly interested in exploring the following three areas in philosophy of psychology: self-knowledge, error in attributing mental states to the self and to others, and what those areas can tell us about the connection between explanations at the personal level and the sub-personal level. 

A paper I have currently in the works is called "Bodily Self-Awareness and Immunity to Error through Misidentification", about the application of Sydney Shoemaker's account of introspective awareness to proprioception.   Along with philosophy, I like hiking and motorbiking. 

Dalia Terhesiu

I grew up and studied in Bucharest. I graduated with a Bachelors degree in Mathematics and Philosophy from Bucharest University, and then subsequently pursued a Masters degree in Philosophy. Some years ago I was excited about Philosophy of Mathematics, but after a while I switched to Cognitive Science. My main actual interests are related to Philosophy of Mind/Cognitive Science. Right now, I am working on the possible ways of grasping the kind of emergent processes from neural level to (whatever we can call) the conceptual one. I am focusing particularly on the emergent processes in connectionist networks and Cellular Automata.

Lawrence Turmel

I am from Austin, Texas where I got a BA in Liberal Studies (concentrations in Philosophy and Religion) from St Edward's University. I discovered philosophy while studying the interactions of science and religion. My interests at this point are fairly wide-ranging, but tend to concentrate in the areas of Political Philosophy and Philosophy of Religion, with background interests in Philosophy of Biology.

Qiong Wang

I received my B.A. and M.A. degrees from Peking University in Beijing, China.  I am particularly interested in the puzzling and complicated problems in the human moral domain.

This newsletter was designed by the Philosophy Department's Program Assistant Shelly Burelle. Please visit our website at: "" where this newsletter is located for miscellaneous links, including links to abstracts, and colloquium updates.

Any questions or comments should be directed to Shelly at