Erich Hatala Matthes
Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Advisory Faculty for Environmental Studies, Wellesley College

Erich Hatala Matthes
Erich Hatala Matthes is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Advisory Faculty for Environmental Studies at Wellesley College.

Professor Matthes' research interests concern moral and political issues surrounding cultural heritage, art, and the environment. He is particularly interested in themes that unite these areas of inquiry, such as preservation of, access to, and control over objects, practices, and places. He has published papers on historical value and irreplaceability, cultural heritage and universal value, cultural appropriation in the arts, the ethics of historic preservation, and the ethics of cultural heritage protection in war. He's also published some papers on other topics, such as loving people in spite of who they are and the democratic value of distrust. Professor Matthes is currently working on essays about the aesthetic experience of history, repatriation of artworks, and the moral/political consequences of different conceptions of heritage. 

He teaches in all of his research areas, and his teaching has an important impact on the shape of his research. He regularly teaches Environmental Ethics and Philosophy of Art and is also a member of the Advisory Faculty for Environmental Studies.

During the summer of 2017 he participated in an NEH Summer Institute on "Space, Place, and the Humanities" at Northeastern University, and wrote a curriculum guide on Art and Cultural Heritage with the support of a Curriculum Diversification Grant from the American Society for Aesthetics. He works on moral and political issues surrounding cultural heritage, art, and the environment.
He and his wife, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences at Wellesley Jaclyn Hatala Matthes, recently collaborated on a book chapter about the ethics of food waste.