I study the history of modern philosophy, focusing on questions of mind and psychology in the 17th Century. My specialty is Spinoza.
My recent work has addressed Spinoza's views on adequate knowledge, innate ideas, the affects, akrasia, and, more recently, the concept of evil. I have also recently completed a book, titled, The Spiritual Automaton: Spinoza's Science of the Mind, to be published by Oxford University Press in December of 2013.
In the 2013-14 academic year, I shall be a Fellow at the Newhouse Center for the Humanities at Wellesley College. While in residence, I plan to work on the philosophy of Margaret Cavendish, particularly her views on the mind and her arguments for panpsychism. I also hope to do some work on her proto-science fictional, quasi-feminist utopian adventure story, The Blazing World.
In the future, I also hope to explore the development of vitalism in the 17th Century, both in Cavendish and others, like Anne Conway and Van Helmont.