Stephen Finlay

Adjunct Professor of Philosophy
Pronouns He / Him / His Email finlay@usc.edu Office STO 114A Office Phone (213) 821-2219

Education

  • Ph.D. Philosophy, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, 2001
  • M.A. Philosophy, Auckland University, 1996
  • B.A. Philosophy, History, Auckland University, New Zealand, 1994
  • Tenure Track Appointments

    • Director & Professor, Dianoia Institute of Philosophy, Australian Catholic University, 2019 –
    • Professor, University of Southern California, 2014 – 2021
    • Associate Professor, University of Southern California, 2009 – 2014
    • Assistant Professor, University of Southern California, 2002 – 2009

    Visiting and Temporary Appointments

    • Adjunct Professor of Philosophy, University of Southern California, 2021
    • Visiting Instructor, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, 2001-2002
  • Summary Statement of Research Interests

    Professor Finlay’s research is focused on metaethics and ethics, especially the nature of normativity, practical reasoning, moral psychology, and the semantic and metaphysical foundations of ethics.

  • Book

    • Finlay, S. (2014). Confusion of Tongues: A Theory of Normative Language. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

    Book Chapter

    • Finlay, S. (2019). Defining Normativity. pp. 187-219. In D. Plunkett, K. Toh, S. Shapiro (eds.), Dimensions of Normativity: New Essays on Metaethics and Jurisprudence. Oxford University Press.
    • Laskowski, N., Finlay, S. (2017). Conceptual Analysis in Metaethics. Routledge Handbook of Metaethics. pp. 536-551. Routledge.
    • Finlay, S. (2016). ‘Ought’: Out of Order. pp. 169-199. In N. Charlow & M. Chrisman, Deontic Modality. Oxford University Press.
    • Finlay, S. (2014). The Pragmatics of Normative Disagreement. pp. 124-148. In G. Fletcher & M. Ridge (eds.), Having It Both Ways: Hybrid Theories and Modern Metaethics. Oxford University Press.
    • Finlay, S. (2009). Against All Reason? Skepticism about the Instrumental Norm. pp. 155-178. In Charles Pigden (ed.), Hume on Motivation and Virtue. Palgrave McMillan.
    • Finlay, S. (2008). Motivation to the Means. pp. 173-191. In David Chan (ed.), Moral Psychology Today: Values, Rational Choice & the Will. Routledge.
    • Finlay, S. (2007). Too Much Morality. pp. 136-154. In Paul Bloomfield (ed.), Morality and Self-Interest. Oxford University Press.

    Book Review

    • Finlay, S., Lutz, M. (2015). Review of Jonas Olson, Moral Error Theory: History, Critique, Defence. Ethics 125 (4).
    • Finlay, S. (2015). Review of John F. Horty, Reasons as Defaults. The Philosophical Review 124 (2). pp. 284-286.
    • Finlay, S. (2010). Review of A. W. Price, Contextuality in Practical Reason. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (1). pp. 187-190.
    • Finlay, S. (2006). Review of Mark Eli Kalderon, Moral Fictionalism. Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews.

    Encyclopedia Article

    • Finlay, S. (2013). Ought. (Hugh LaFollette, Ed.). International Encyclopedia of Ethics.
    • Finlay, S. (2013). Moral Language, Uses of. (Hugh LaFollette, Ed.). International Encyclopedia of Ethics.
    • Finlay, S. (2012). Metaethics. (Edward Craig, Ed.). Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy Online.
    • Finlay, S., Schroeder, M. (2008). Reasons for Action: Internal vs. External. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    • Finlay, S. (2005). The Emotive Theory of Ethics. MacMillan Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd Ed..

    Journal Article

    • Finlay, S. (2020). Reply to Worsnip, Koehn, and Dowell. Analysis. Vol. 80 (1), pp. 131-147.
    • Finlay, S. (2020). Confusion of Tongues (Precis). Analysis. Vol. 80 (1), pp. 99-101.
    • Finlay, S., Lennertz, B. (2020). What Might But Must Not Be. Analysis. Vol. 80 (4), pp. 647-656.
    • Finlay, S. (2019). A ‘Good’ Explanation of Five Puzzles about Reasons. Philosophical Perspectives. Vol. 33, pp. 62-104.
    • Finlay, S., Plunkett, D. (2018). Quasi-Expressivism about Statements of Law: A Hartian Theory. Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Law. Vol. 3, pp. 49-86.
    • Finlay, S. (2017). Disagreement Lost and Found. Oxford Studies in Metaethics 12. Oxford University Press. pp. 187-205.
    • Finlay, S., Snedegar, J. (2014). One Ought Too Many. Philosophy & Phenomenological Research. Vol. 89 (1), pp. 102-24.
    • Finlay, S. (2012). Explaining Reasons. Deutsches Jahrbuch für Philosophie, Vol. 4. Meiner Verlag. pp. 112-126.
    • Finlay, S. (2011). Errors upon Errors: A Reply to Joyce. Australasian Journal of Philosophy. Vol. 89 (3), pp. 535-547.
    • Finlay, S. (2011). The Selves and the Shoemaker: Psychopaths, Moral Judgement, and Responsibility. The Southern Journal of Philosophy. Vol. 49 (Spindel Supplement), pp. 125-133.
    • Björnsson, G., Finlay, S. (2010). Metaethical Contextualism Defended. Ethics. Vol. 121 (1), pp. 7-36.
    • Finlay, S. (2010). What ‘ought’ probably means, and why you can’t detach it. Synthese. Vol. 177 (1), pp. 67-89.
    • Finlay, S. (2010). Normativity, Necessity and Tense: A Recipe for Homebaked Normativity. Oxford Studies in Metaethics 5. Oxford University Press. pp. 57-85.
    • Finlay, S. (2010). Recent Work on Normativity. Analysis. Vol. 70 (2), pp. 331-346.
    • Finlay, S. (2009). The Obscurity of Internal Reasons. Philosophers’ Imprint. Vol. 9 (7), pp. 1-22.
    • Finlay, S. (2009). Oughts and Ends. Philosophical Studies. Vol. 143 (3), pp. 315-340.
    • Finlay, S. (2008). The Error in the Error Theory. Australasian Journal of Philosophy. Vol. 86 (3), pp. 347-369.
    • Finlay, S. (2007). Four Faces of Moral Realism. Philosophy Compass. Vol. 2 (6), pp. 820-49.
    • Finlay, S. (2007). Responding to Normativity. Oxford Studies in Metaethics 2. Oxford University Press. pp. 220-39.
    • Finlay, S. (2006). The Reasons that Matter. Australasian Journal of Philosophy. Vol. 84, pp. 1-20.
    • Finlay, S. (2005). Value and Implicature. Philosophers’ Imprint. Vol. 5 (4), pp. 1-20.
    • Finlay, S. (2004). The Conversational Practicality of Value Judgement. Journal of Ethics. Vol. 8(3), pp. 205-223.
    • NEH Fellowship, 2012-2013
    • AJP Best Paper Award (for “The Error in the Error Theory”), Australasian Association of Philosophy, 2009
    • Charles A. Ryskamp Research Fellowship, 2008-2009
    • General Education Teaching Award, 2003-2004