Personal profile

Personal profile

I joined Royal Holloway in September 2017 from the University of Liverpool, having been a Humboldt Fellow at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster from 2014-2016. In 2017-18 I was a EURIAS Fellow at ENS Lyon, researching Franco-German intellectual exchange in the 1830s, particularly the controversy between Schelling and Victor Cousin, and last year I undertook a British Academy fellowship for a project, 'Caring for Plants in Modern Philosophy, 1746-1806', based on an AHRC network on the place of plants in the philosophy of nature. I am also currently lead for the University's "Assessment Futures" strategic project.

Research interests

I research mainly on the history of philosophy, particularly French, German and Dutch traditions in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Following the publication of Schelling's Theory of Symbolic Language: Forming the System of Identity by Oxford University Press in 2013, my research on German philosophy has tended to focus on Schellingian Naturphilosophie, as well as further investigations into his philosophy of language. This led (with Benjamin Berger) to the The Schelling-Eschenmayer Controversy, 1801: Nature and Identity, as well as a textbook of Schelling's writings: The Schelling Reader (Bloomsbury). I am currently interested in interrogating the place of plants in philosophies of nature past and present in both a AHRC network and a British Academy fellowship, and this has led me to think about two twentieth-century botanists at the intersection of philosophy and the life sciences: Agnes Arber and Wilhelm Troll.

I am also interested in the eighteenth-century origins of German Idealism and Romanticism, particularly the philosophy of Francois Hemsterhuis, and have published a monograph, Francois Hemsterhuis and the Writing of Philosophy and co-translated his writings into English for the very first time in the three-volumes, The Edinburgh Edition of the Philosophical Works of François Hemsterhuis.

My work on the French tradition is directly specifically at French historiography of philosophy both Victor Cousin's eclectic school, as well as the twentieth-century historiographies of Gueroult and Alquie. I have co-edited with Mark Sinclair The Oxford Handbook to Modern French Philosophy, led work on the volume Hegel and Schelling in Early Nineteenth-Century France and have just submitted to Oxford University Press an edition of Victor Cousin's shorter writings (Philosophical Fragments).

For more of a sense of my research, see further the various project and publication websites listed below:

(a)   Publications:

(b)   UK Schelling Research Group (British Academy Project, 2016 -17):

(c)    The Philosophical Life of Plants (AHRC project, 2019-21): 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

External positions

QAA Philosophy Benchmark Statement: Subject Advisory Group, Quality Assurance Agency

1 Feb 20241 Jul 2025

Member, UKRI Interdisciplinary Assessment College, UKRI Interdisciplinary Assessment College

1 Sept 20231 Sept 2026

Panel Member, AHRC-DFG Joint Funding Initiative

1 Jan 2021 → …

Member, AHRC Peer Review College, AHRC Peer Review College

31 Jan 2020 → …

External Examiner, University of the West of England, UG Philosophy programmes, University of the West of England

1 Jul 20191 Aug 2023

Editorial Board, Symphilosophie Journal

1 Dec 2017 → …

EURIAS Fellow, ENS de Lyon

1 Sept 20171 Jul 2018

Editorial Board, Journal of the North American Schelling Society

1 Jan 2017 → …

External Examiner, Kingston University, MA Modern European Philosophy, Kingston University

1 Sept 201631 Aug 2020

External Examiner, Leeds Trinity University, BA Philosophy, Ethics and Religion, Leeds Trinity University

1 Sept 201431 Aug 2018

External Examiner, University of the West of England BA Philosophy, University of Aberdeen

1 Sept 201431 Aug 2018

Associate Editor, Literature and Theology

1 Sept 20111 Jun 2022


  • Philosophy
  • history of philosophy
  • philosophy of religion

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