I have been awarded a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship from the European Commission for "The Art of the Impossible: A Philosophical Study of Theatrical Magic.” The fellowship will fund a 24-month visiting research appointment at the Centre for Philosophical Psychology at the University of Antwerp in Belgium. During my time at the Centre, I'll complete my book on the aesthetics of magic (under contract with The MIT Press), write several scholarly articles, organize reading groups, deliver a series of public lectures, produce essays for popular audiences, and plan and host an international workshop on the philosophy and psychology of magic. The fellowship appointment begins in August 2019 and runs through July 2021.
2017. “The Enjoyment of Negative Emotions in the Experience of Magic,” a commentary on Menninghaus, et al., "The Distancing-Embracing model of the enjoyment of negative emotions in art reception." Behavioral and Brain Sciences 40. | Published Version
A recent publication, "Understanding 'Understanding' in Public Understanding of Science," has been profiled in Tania Lombrozo's NPR blog here.
As of 10/23/17, my book project, The Art of the Impossible, is under contract with The MIT Press! The target delivery date for the manuscript is late 2020.
Two new co-authored articles have recently appeared, born of the Public Understanding of Science project:
2017. “Understanding ‘Understanding’ in Public Understanding of Science.” With J. Huxster, J. Bresticker, V. LoPiccolo, and M. Slater. Public Understanding of Science. | Published Version
2017. “Attempts to Prime Intellectual Virtues for Understanding of Science: Failures to Inspire Intellectual Effort.” With J. Huxster, M. Hopkins, J. Bresticker, and M. Slater. Philosophical Psychology. | Published Version (Access Required)
I have been appointed the National Endowment for the Humanities Chair in the Humanities at Bucknell, beginning in 2017.
Now available, a new essay, "Magic: Art of the Impossible," intended for the 4th edition of Aesthetics: A Reader in Philosophy of the Arts, edited by Goldblatt and Partridge. This essay is especially intended for undergraduate audiences. See here.
My prize-winning essay, "The Experience of Magic," is now available online in the Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism. See here.
The newest newsletter from the American Society for Aesthetics features a short essay (by me) on "Arts of the Impossible." My focus is on magic, but I also discuss drawings of impossible figures and the relationship between magic and humor (using Charles Addams' wonderful and famous cartoon, "The Skier"). Here's a link to the newsletter.
I have been awarded a 2016 Summer Stipend from the National Endowment for the Humanities for my project, "The Art of the Impossible." As part of the project, I'll develop a new website dedicated to arts of impossibility (with a focus on magic). It will launch in September!
The podcast for my talk at the London Aesthetics Forum is now available via iTunes. The slideshow—so that you can follow along at home (and watch the video clips)—is HERE.