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Postgraduate Study by Research in Philosophy

The Philosophy section at MMU is a centre of excellence, with advanced research in a number of areas of the history of philosophy, transcendental philosophy, and phenomenology. In the last Research Assessment Exercise (2008) the distribution was 5% at 4, 35% at 3, 55% at 2, and 5% at 1.  The Department is home to the European Philosophy Group research centre.


Current staff

Dr Anna Bergqvist is Lecturer of Philosophy at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her principal research interests are aesthetics and moral philosophy, with special emphasis on meta-ethics, normativity and related areas. She is co-editor of Philosophy and Museums: Ethics, Aesthetics and Ontology (forthcoming with Cambridge University Press), to which she is contributing a thematic piece on objectivity in art interpretation and museums narrative. Her other publications include essays on aesthetic particularism, thick evaluative concepts, perspectivalism, and semantic contextualism. She also works on the intersection between ethics and philosophy of perception, currently preparing a co-edited volume on Evaluative Perception for Oxford University Press.


Dr Keith Crome has published work on the philosophy of Jean Francois Lyotard (Lyotard and Greek Thought: Sophistry (Palgrave, 2004); The Lyotard Reader and Guide (Edinburgh UP, 2006), and Michel Foucault. He has also published on aspects of pedagogy, with specific reference to the teaching of philosophy, and is currently preparing a monograph on the philosophy of education.


Dr Ullrich Haase is working on the phenomenology of Nietzsche, and has published an introduction to his work, Starting with Nietzsche (Continuum 2008). He is currently editor the Journal of the British Society for Phenomenology.  He is working with Dr. Sinclair on a translation of Heidegger Gesamtausgabe, volume 46, Heidegger reading Nietzsche’s Untimely Meditations.


Professor Joanna Hodge works in transcendental philosophy and phenomenology. She published Heidegger and Ethics (Routledge) in 1995, and had AHRC funding (2003-2004) for Derrida on Time (2007), also with Routledge. She has recently published articles on Queering Hegel, and on Differance, as a rewriting of Transcendental Aesthetics.  She is currently working on a study of the transformation of transcendental aesthetics, in phenomenology, through the thematics of horizonality, touch, trace, and writing at the limit of sense.


Dr Phil Hutchinson is based at the MMU Cheshire campus in Crewe and has recently published “Thinking and Understanding” in Wittgenstein: Key Concepts. Edited by Kelly Dean Jolley. Durham (2010) and Shame and Philosophy: An Investigation in the Philosophy of Emotions and Ethics (2008). His research interests include: Wittgenstein, philosophy of social science, philosophy of the emotions, political philosophy and ethics, rhetoric and critical thinking.


Dr Wahida Khandker completed her doctoral thesis on ‘The élan vital, Subjectivity and Creativity in Bergson’, at the University of Warwick. She has published articles on Bergson’s writings, in relation to Kantian critique, and to Whitehead’s process metaphysics.  She currently works on the interactions between philosophical, biological and medical conceptions of life and animality.


Professor Michael Loughlin has written on a range of topics and addressed some very diverse academic and professional groups, promoting philosophy as an applied discipline and explaining its value in an irrational social world. Key areas include:

  • – Management theory: critique of managerialism, jargon (‘quality’, ‘modernisation’) and market ideology/ consumerism in health and education;
  • – Opinion-management and Orwellian strategies in professional and public life, methods for preserving integrity in corrupting environments, the idea of philosophy as a method of training in ‘intellectual and moral self-defence';
  • – Medical Epistemology: problems with scientistic/reductionist approaches to medical reasoning; problems with evidence-based medicine; the role of intuition and judgement;
  • – The relationship between epistemology and ethics, knowledge and activity;
  • – The nature of perception and perceptual content, consciousness, action and problems with computer analogies and mechanistic accounts of experience and reasoning;
  • – Teaching philosophy: the nature and value of applied philosophy;  Rationing, quality-of-life measures, health policy, & methodological problems for some forms of ‘applied ethics’.


Dr Mark Sinclair has published Heidegger, Aristotle and the Work of Art: Poiesis in Being (Palgrave 2005), and, with Clare Carlisle, a translation of Felix Ravaisson Of Habit (Continuum 2008). He has a long-standing interest in the philosophy of technology and is working with Dr Haase on the translation of Heidegger GA 46.  His current work concerns conceptions of ontology, embodiment and the nature of the self in 19th-century philosophy from Maine de Biran to Bergson.


Dr Lloyd Strickland‘s principal research interests are Early Modern European Philosophy, and Philosophy of Religion. He is currently working on two cognate projects; one is a monograph on Leibniz’s philosophical theology, the other is a scholarly anthology, in English, of Leibniz’s key philosophical writings on God and religion

Staff in the department are involved in the work of a number of national and international professional bodies including the British Society for Phenomenology, the British Society for the History of Philosophy, the Society for European Philosophy, the International Association for Philosophy andLiterature and the Husserl Circle.

Areas of expertise include:

  • – Aesthetics in the continental tradition from Kant to Nancy; Aesthetics in the analytic tradition from Sibley to present
  • – Meta-ethics
  • – Philosophy of Medicine
  • – Bergson and Whitehead
  • – The Phenomenological Traditions:
  • – Husserl, Heidegger, Levinas Lyotard, Derrida;
  • – Hegel and German Idealism
  • – The Philosophy of Kant


Doctoral Studies

Our most recent doctoral defences were theses by Dr Dominic Kelly (on Heidegger) and Dr Nicholas Aldridge (on Jean-Luc Nancy). Students are currently writing doctorates on the work of Hegel, on the work of Jean Luc Nancy, on the symbol in the writings of Kant, Nietzsche and Benjamin, and on the work of Foucault. There are weekly meetings of the Human Sciences Seminar (HSS) in the autumn and spring terms, and a seminar for graduate students to present their work in the summer term. There is an MA in European Philosophy, taught this year (2014-15) by Strickland (Leibniz’ Monadology); Bergqvist (Philosophy and Film); Sinclair (Philosophies of Habit); Hodge (Derrida), Crome (Contemporary Interpretations of Plato); Haase (Heidegger and Merleau-Ponty on art).

For information on the MA in European Philosophy, contact Dr Keith Crome, on

For details of the Human Sciences Seminar, please contact Dr. Khandker on

For further information concerning admission for postgraduate Research Degrees contact Professor Joanna Hodge (, ResearchDegrees Coordinator