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Grace R

- Research Program Mentor

MA candidate at Oxford University


Philosophy, history of philosophy, ethics, bioethics, action theory, philosophy of neuroscience, medical ethics, meta-ethics, Aristotle, Aquinas, Descartes, Hume, Kant, Anscombe, Wittgenstein


I'm Grace! I am interested in practical philosophy, which means all the areas of philosophy related to action and ethics. I am currently on the BPhil (a master's degree) in Philosophy at Oxford, and so far, I have worked on essays covering virtue ethics, Aristotle scholarship, the 'Is-Ought' Fallacy, and action theory. I am working on Kant's practical philosophy now, and I'll work on a thesis on moral responsibility and action theory (particularly considering omissions and negligence) in the spring. My favorite philosopher is G.E.M. Anscombe, who radically challenged the consequentialist moral philosophy that dominated much of the 20th century. Before I was a philosopher, I also was a biologist--I got a BS in Biology in addition to my BA. I focused on neuroscience and got some hands-on experience in scientific research. When not working on philosophy, I bake and cook (mostly Alison Roman's recipes), read all sorts of fiction, am an amateur at Italian, and enjoy long walks in beautiful Oxford.

Project ideas

Project ideas are meant to help inspire student thinking about their own project. Students are in the driver seat of their research and are free to use any or none of the ideas shared by their mentors.

Do you decide with your brain, or does your brain decide for you?

In this project, you will write a philosophy essay on how our brains either determine, relate to, support, or aren't involved with our thinking. This paper will introduce you to some of the philosophical literature on the philosophy of neuroscience, action, and thought. More importantly, you'll learn how to construct, explicate, and defend an argument. This project will sharpen your thinking and writing skills so you can communicate your ideas clearly and persuasively.

Is Justice a Virtue?

Plato and Aristotle argued that justice is not just something restored or distributed in social and political spheres: they thought that justice was also a quality of a person. What does it mean to be a just person, and how is the conception of justice as a virtue relevant to the world today? These questions could be asked and answered in essay, podcast, video, or magazine form. You will read classical sources and secondary sources to understand how Aristotle and Plato conceived of the just person, but you also will consider more immediate contemporary concerns--should prisons try to inculcate the virtue of justice? Should public schools? In this project, you will learn to read and interpret classical sources and extend what's true and lasting into answers for the challenges society faces today. You will learn to think broadly and deeply, to argue clearly, to analyze evidence for claims, and to consider practical challenges and paths forward for encouraging the virtue of justice today.

The Ethics of Gene Editing

Advocates of gene editing using CRISPR/Cas9 technology promise the end of genetic diseases. There are serious ethical concerns involved in testing and implementation. But there are deeper questions possible: should we seek to eradicate every genetic disease? How should we think about suffering and what it is to be human? These questions concern ethical philosophy more generally but also timely and challenging questions in medical ethics. In this project, you will learn to read closely, think carefully about arguments, and try to come to some answers for yourself about what it is to be human. You will also learn critical research skills in finding sources for complex inter-disciplinary questions and also practice writing and editing skills that will help you to become a convicted and clear communicator.

Teaching experience

I have tutored students in undergraduate courses in the life sciences, and I have also mentored a biochemistry student in professional/personal development.



University of South Carolina
BA Bachelor of Arts (2022)
Oxford University
MA Master of Arts candidate

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