Dan Baras

Dan Baras

Dan Baras

Philosophy

Areas of Specialty: epistemology, metaethics, philosophy of religion
Areas of Competence: ethics, logic, philosophy of science

 

Curriculum Vitae

Education

  • Ph.D. Philosophy: Ben Gurion University (2011–2016)

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Visiting Student (fall 2013; fall 2014)

  • M.A. Philosophy: The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2005-2009)

  • B.Ed. Jewish Studies: Herzog College (2002–2005)

Post Doctoral Research

  • Harvard University, Associate of the Department of Philosophy (Aug-Dec 2019)

  • The Martin Buber Society of Fellows, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Post-Doctoral Fellow (2017–present)

  • The Center for Moral and Political Philosophy, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Post-Doctoral Fellow (2016–2017)

  • Visiting Scholar at New York University, department of philosophy (Sep–Oct 2016)

Publications

Peer Reviewed Journals:

  1. ‘Calling for Explanation: The Case of the Thermodynamic Past State’ (with Orly Shenker), European Journal for Philosophy of Science (forthcoming)

  2. ‘No Need to Get Up from the Armchair (If You Are Interested in Debunking Arguments in Metaethics)’, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice (forthcoming)

  3. ‘Modal Security’ (with Justin Clarke-Doane), Philosophy and Phenomenological Research (forthcoming)

  4. ‘A Moral Argument against Absolute Authority of the Torah’, Sophia (forthcoming)

  5. ‘A Strike against a Striking Principle’, Philosophical Studies 177:6 (2020), 1501–1514.

  6. How Close Are Impossible Worlds? : A Critique of Brogaard and Salerno’s Account of Counterpossibles’, dialectica 73:3 (2019), pp. 315–329

  7. ‘Why Do Certain States of Affairs Call for Explanation? A Critique of Two Horwichian Accounts’, Philosophia 47:5 (2019), pp. 1405–1419

  8. ‘The Explanatory Challenge: Moral Realism Is No Better Than Theism’, European Journal of Philosophy 26:1 (2018), pp. 368–389

  9. ‘A Reliability Challenge to Theistic Platonism’, Analysis 77:3 (2017), pp. 479–487

  10. ‘Our Reliability is in Principle Explainable’, Episteme 14:2 (2017), pp. 197–211

Under Review:

  • ‘How Can Necessary Facts Call for Explanation?’ (R&R Synthese)

  • ‘Do Extraordinary Types Call for Explanation?’

Book Project (in progress, draft available): Calling for Explanation

This book is the first comprehensive treatment of the idea that some facts call for explanation. I argue that if calling for explanation is thought of as a fixed property of facts that justifies explanatory inferences, as many believe it to be, this leads to a futile philosophical project and confusions in reasoning. I develop the view that calling for explanation is merely a figurative form of speech without a fixed meaning. This sheds new light on influential debates in metaphysics, philosophy of mathematics, metaethics, cosmology and philosophy of physics among others.

Articles in Progress:

  • ‘What Is Surprising? On the Normativity of Surprise’ (with Oded Na’aman) (draft available)

  • ‘Explaining Away a Purported Disanalogy between Practical and Epistemic Reasons: Response to Selim Berker’ (draft available)

  • ‘There is no genuine distinction between undercutting and rebutting defeaters’ (with Justin Clarke-Doane)

Book Reviews:

  • ‘Graham Oppy. 2018. Atheism and Agnosticism’, Reading Religion (2019)

  • ‘Russ Shafer-Landau (ed.). 2012. Oxford Studies in Metaethics Volume 7’, The Journal of Moral Philosophy 12/3 (2015), pp. 359 – 362.

  • ‘Jill Graper Hernandez (ed.). 2011. The New Intuitionism’, Metapsychology Online Reviews 16/49 (2012)

  • ‘Norman Solomon. 2012. Torah from Heaven’, Center for Jewish Law and Contemporary Civilization blog (2012)

Academic Presentations

  • ‘Do Some Facts Call for Explanation? What Does That Even Mean?’

  • Princeton Department of Psychology, Tania Lombrozo’s Concepts and Cognition Lab (2019)

  • University of Maryland, Department of Philosophy (2019)

  • Harvard Department of Philosophy, Talk-Shop Series (2019)

  • Haifa University, Philosophy Department Colloquium (2019)

  • The Martin Buber Society of Fellows Colloquium, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2019)

  • ‘What Is Surprising? On the Rationality of Surprise’

  • Hebrew University, Interdisciplinary Workshop on Surprise (2020)

  • 23rd Meeting of the New Israeli Philosophy Association, Tel Aviv (2020)

  • M.I.T. Department of Cognitive Science, Josh Tenenbaum’s Computational Cognitive Science Group (2019)

  • 'A Strike Against A Striking Principle'

  • Eastern APA, Philadelphia (2020)

  • M.I.T. Epistemology Reading Group (2019)

  • International Conference on Explanation in Philosophy, Wuhan University (2019)

  • The Haifa Conference on the Philosophy of Religion, Haifa University (2018)

  • Tel Hai College, Philosophy Dep. Colloquium (2017)

  • ‘A Moral Argument against Absolute Authority of the Torah’

  • Association for Jewish Philosophy, online symposium (2019)

  • ‘How Can Necessary Facts Call for Explanation?’

  • 93rd Joint Session of the Aristotelean Society and the Mind Association, Durham (2019)

  • 22nd Meeting of the New Israeli Philosophy Association, Bar-Ilan University (2019)

  • ‘Modal Security’

  • Cyprus MetaEthics workshop, University of Cyprus (2019)

  •  ‘Does the Past Low Entropy of Our Universe Call for Explanation?’

  • The 21st Meeting of the New Israeli Philosophy Association, Haifa University (2018)

  • ‘No Need to Get Up from The Armchair’

  • Biology and Ethics: Prospects and Challenges, The Hebrew University (2017)

  • ‘Extraordinary Types: Schlesinger’s Theory of Strikingness’

  • Edelstein Center for the History and Philosophy of Science, the Hebrew University (2017)

  • Philosophy Department Colloquium, the Hebrew University (2016)

  • ‘Strikingness: Why Do Certain States Of Affairs Call For Explanation?’

  • Explanatory Reasoning in the Sciences, 2nd Jerusalem-MCMP Workshop in the Philosophy of Science, Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy (2017)

  • Society of Christian Philosophers Eastern Regional Meeting, Rutgers (2016)

  • Philosophy Department Colloquium, Ben Gurion University (2016)

  • ‘Our Reliability is Explainable: Responding to the Benacerraf-Field Challenge’

  • The 18th Meeting of the New Israeli Philosophy Association, the Open University of Israel (2015)

  • M.A.T.T.I., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2014)

  • The Underground Workshop, the Hebrew University (2014)

  • ‘Causal Debunking: Can the Causal History of a Belief Give One Reason to Drop the Belief?’

  • The 16th Meeting of the New Israeli Philosophy Association, Bar Ilan University (2013)

  • The 2nd HUJI Graduate Conference in Philosophy, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2013)

  • Epistemology Reading Group, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2013)

  • ‘Darwinian Challenges to Realism in Morality and Religion’

  • Knowledge, Reality and Value: East and West, the Society for Indian Philosophy and Religion, Kolkata, India (2013)

  • HUJI Graduate Conference in Philosophy, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2012)

  • ‘The Prophecy of the Jurist: Moral, Jurisprudential and Halakhic Intuitionism’

  • Philosophical Investigation of the Hebrew Scriptures, Talmud and Midrash, Shalem Center, Jerusalem (2012)

  • Legal Theory and Jewish Studies, Van Leer Institute, Jerusalem (2012)

  • ‘The Explanatory Challenge to Moral and Theistic Realism’

  • The 15th Meeting of the New Israeli Philosophy Association, University of Haifa (2012)

  • ‘The Problem of Disagreement in Ethics and Religion’

  • The Phenomenology of Faith, graduate workshop, Van Leer Institute, Jerusalem (2010)

  • ‘Moral Supervenience Arguments’

  • The 14th Meeting of the New Israeli Philosophy Association, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2011)

  • Practical Ethics in Question, graduate workshop, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2010)