a headshot-style picture of Steve Crowell, with a bookshelf in the background

My main field of interest is twentieth century European philosophy, especially phenomenology (the philosophy of Edmund Husserl) and its development in Heidegger, existentialism (Sartre, Merelau-Ponty, Levinas, Arendt), hermeneutics (Gadamer, Ricoeur) and post-structuralism (Derrida, Lyotard). My systematic interests lie in metaphysics, meta-ethics, philosophy of mind, aesthetics, and the philosophy of history. I also do research in the 18th and 19th century background of contemporary European thought: Kant, German Idealism, Nietzsche, Kierkegaard, and the German neo-Kantians.

My work is centered in the tradition of phenomenological transcendental philosophy. My recent book, Normativity and Phenomenology in Husserl and Heidegger, focuses on the relation between intentionality and normativity – between our experience of a meaningful world and our ability to respond to standards, ideals, measures, rules, etc., as normative, that is, to understand ourselves as acting in light of them. This fundamental ability – which, I argue, is a first-personal capacity best understood in terms of the existential notion of “commitment” – is a necessary condition of all ethics, cognition, understanding and, in general, our being-in-the-world. My current research focuses on the relation between phenomenology and metaphysics, and the possibility of a phenomenological account of the nature and origin of reason.

Curriculum Vitae