Dr Tyler Paytas

Research Fellow

Dr Tyler Paytas

Areas of expertise: ethics; history of philosophy; philosophy of religion

Phone: +613 9230 8391

Email: Tyler.paytas@acu.edu.au

Location: ACU Melbourne Campus

My primary research interests are in ethics and the history of philosophy. The three figures I am currently focused on are Plato, Kant, and Sidgwick. One of the overarching goals of my work on these philosophers is to gain a deeper understanding of the differences and similarities between divergent ethical approaches such as eudaimonism, consequentialism, and deontology. Among the specific topics I am interested in is the differing accounts of virtue and value advocated by the great historical champions of these theories. I am currently co-authoring (with Nicholas Baima) a monograph titled Plato’s Pragmatism (Routledge, under contract). The central claim of this book is that, contrary to common opinion, Plato actually prioritizes practical ends (e.g. moral virtue and psychological harmony) above epistemic ends such as knowledge and truth. A second topic I am interested in is the role that impartiality plays within the different ethical theories. I am currently investigating this topic as part of a two-year project on “The Philosophical History of Ethical Impartialism” funded through the Australia-Germany Joint Research Co-operations Scheme (UA/DAAD).

Before joining ACU I was a VolkswagenStiftung Postdoctoral Fellow in the Institute of Philosophy at the University of Stuttgart. I received my PhD from Washington University in St. Louis in 2015. Prior to that, I received an MA in Philosophy from UM-St. Louis and a BA in Philosophy & Religion and English from Truman State University.

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Select publications

  • Plato's Pragmatism: Rethinking the Relationship between Ethics and Epistemology,co-authored with Nicholas Baima. Routledge (under contract).
  • Kantian and Sidgwickian Ethics: The Cosmos of Duty Above and the Moral Law Within, co-edited with Tim Henning. Routledge (forthcoming). 
  • ‘True in Word and Deed: Plato on the Impossibility of Divine Deception’, with Nicholas Baima,Journal of the History of Philosophy. (forthcoming). 
  • ‘Of Providence and Puppet Shows: Divine Hiddenness as Kantian Theodicy’, Faith and Philosophy36(1), 2019: 56-80.
  • ‘Intrinsic Valuing and the Limits of Justice: Why the Ring of Gyges Matters’, with Nicholas Baima, Phronesis 64(1), 2019: 1-9.
  • ‘God’s Awful Majesty Before Our Eyes: Kant’s Moral Justification for Divine Hiddenness’, Kantian Review22(1), 2017: 133-157.
  • ‘Rational Beings with Emotional Needs: The Patient-Centered Grounds of Kant’s Duty of Humanity’, History of PhilosophyQuarterly 32(4), 2015: 353-376.
  • ‘Sometimes Psychopaths Get it Right: A Utilitarian Response to “The Mismeasure of Morals”’, Utilitas26(2), 2014: 178-191. 

Public engagement

Appointments and affiliations

  • VolkswagenStiftung Postdoctoral Fellow, Institute for Philosophy, University of Stuttgart, 2015-2016

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