Cookies

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Otherwise, we'll assume you're OK to continue.

Department of Philosophy

Recent Undergraduate Dissertations

Our undergraduate students are encouraged to engage with, and be a part of, our research community. In their final year students have the option to compose a serious piece of research of their own design, on a topic of their own choice, under supervision of a leading expert in the field. Examples of recent dissertations are listed below.

Final Year Dissertations 2015-2016

NameTitleDegree prog.Supervisor
Lucy Allen A Philosophical Account of Evil Actions and Evil Persons SH Philosophy Prof. Geoffrey Scarre
Anthony Avis The ideology of Darwinism: Marx's critique of the theory of natural selection Natural Sciences Dr. Matthew Eddy
Kate Barton Intervention vs. information: The competing duties of a war photojournalist SH Philosophy Ms. Sue Lowe
Chris Beirne Is there any reason to take animals into our moral consideration if they canot suffer? SH Philosophy Dr. Simon James
Lizzi Bellman Investigating the psychoanalysis of melancholia: A reading of Janet Frame's Faces in the Water Natural Sciences Dr. Sylvie Gambaudo
Poppie Bouch Judith Butler and the body: A critical reading of Butler's use of biology in her theory of gender SH Philosophy Dr. Sylvie Gambaudo
Luke Boulton An examination of shame in relation to immoral art JH Philosophy & Theology Dr. Clare Mac Cumhaill
Claudia Bowman The ethics of ambush marketing: A social contract theory perspective JH Philosophy & Psychology Dr. Andreas Pantazatos
Toby Bradshaw Moral landscapes: Perceiving evil and overcoming empathy SH Philosophy Dr. Liz McKinnell
Anna Chambers Theatre as political art: The aesthetics of Bertolt Brecht SH Philosophy Dr. Richard Stopford
Alysha Chelliah An analysis of depression on the basis of natural and interactive kinds JH Philosophy & Psychology Dr. Benedict Smith
Tash Clifford Madness in dreams JH Philosophy & Psychology Prof. Andy Hamilton
Anya Cooklin-Lofting The centrality of evolution and degeneration in Robert Louis Stevenson's The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde SH Philosophy Dr. Matthew Eddy
Lauren Cooper Constructing a human right to informational privacy: An investigation into how our personal information is used on the internet PPE Dr. Andreas Pantazatos
Sam Courtney-Guy What kind of problem is Kripke's rule-following paradox? PPE Dr. Sara L. Uckelman
Louisa Crowder Human Nature, Value and Identity in Modern Virtue Theory SH Philosophy Dr. Liz McKinnell
Lucie Daniel-Watanabe Can voluntary euthanasia be legalised? Examing the ethical and practical arguments JH Philosophy & Psychology Prof. Geoffrey Scarre
Meg Edmond Corporate social responsibility: An application to the fashion industry SH Philosophy Dr. Andreas Pantazatos
Peter Ellis Improving Aristotelian accounts of virtue: The argument for a more consequentialist understanding of virtuous action SH Philosophy Dr. Andreas Pantazatos
Shanae Ennis-Melhado Does the arousal of emotion in the listener have any significance in musical experience? Combined Arts Dr. Clare Mac Cumhaill
Lydia Feerick "Can we help others without helping ourselves?" Investigating the perceived altruism of international volunteering and aid work JH Philosophy & Psychology Ms. Sue Lowe
Frank Gillies Defending the ethics of authenticity SH Philosophy Dr. Paula Satne
Amy Graham The depravity of humanity: A philosophical investigation into the nature of evil SH Philosophy Prof. Geoffrey Scarre
Simeon Hance Is the transhumanist idea of human enhancement morally permissable? SH Philosophy Dr. Andreas Pantazatos
David Harris Artificial Intelligence and Philosophical Logic Natural Sciences Dr. Sara L. Uckelman
Ellie Hattersley Effective altruism: A better approach to charity? Combined Arts Dr. Benedict Smith
Jen He Applying rule utilitarianism to enable businesses to behave ethically, indstead of just presenting an ethical image PPE Dr. Andreas Pantazatos
Jack Heald Should modern science be pluralistic or monistic? Natural Sciences Dr. Peter Vickers
Virut Hemnilrat Colonialism: Mill's utilitarianism for the development of all peoples PPE Prof. Andy Hamilton
Dirk Hofland The school choice trilemma: Matching students to high schools in the Amsterdam public school system PPE Dr. Sara L. Uckelman
Dodie James Fulford's values based practice and its role in contemporary medicine SH Philosophy Dr. Benedict Smith
Millie Jones Technology, public concerns, and politics: The emergence of bioethics in the second half of the twentieth century Combined Arts Prof. Holger Maehle
Wan Kim Civil disobedience and willingness to accept punishment PPE Prof. Geoffrey Scarre
Ben Kirk The inescapability of mental externalism JH Philosophy & Psychology Dr. Peter Vickers
James Knight The aesthetics of rhythmic ambiguity SH Philosophy Dr. Clare Mac Cumhaill
David Kong Folk psychology and ethics: Can moral philosophy improve our understanding of folk psychology? PPE Dr. Benedict Smith
Pippa Leadley Three-parent babies: An ethical exploration of mitochondrial replacement therapy PPE Prof. Holger Maehle
Emily Lok Can artificial intelligence, as currently conceived, ever be considered a truly creative entity? JH Philosophy & Psychology Dr. Peter Vickers
Imogen Maclaren Reappraising The Harm in Hate Speech: A dynamic approach to freedom of speech SH Philosophy Dr. Sara L. Uckelman
Beth McGarrick Do performance-enhancing drugs cohere within the current paradigm of sport? SH Philosophy Ms. Sue Lowe
Florence Morrison Fiction, empathy, and morality: The role of reading fiction in moral development Natural Sciences Dr. Benedict Smith
Lauren Munro-Bennett Can sport help develop the virtues? JH Philosophy & Psychology Ms. Sue Lowe
Alex Nesbitt Is involuntary hospitalisation of the suicidal ever justifiable? SH Philosophy Ms. Sue Lowe
Susan Notess Sacred languages: A phenomenological and pragmatic acocunt of sacred language use Graduate Diploma Dr. Richard Stopford & Dr. Sara L. Uckelman
Afam Okoh Is it possible to build a positive ethical theory for Nietzsche and to what extent do his attitudes towards free will and his perspectivism influence his theory? PPE Dr. Richard Stopford
Jamie Oyebode Adorno's critique of popular music: An analysis of contemporary music within the 21st century JH Philosophy & Theology Prof. Andy Hamilton
Christopher Perrett Should the liberal care about equality? PPE Prof. Geoffrey Scarre
Alexander Perry Power, knowledge, and benevolence: Is the omniGod theory coherent? Combined Arts Dr. Thomas Ball
Alicia Polley Authenticity, abstraction, and action: A defense of Sartre's aesthetics in light of Jackson Pollack's drip paintings SH Philosophy Prof. Andy Hamilton
Daniel Pryor Are postmodern philosophy and market anarchism allies or enemies? PPE Prof. Julian Reiss
Anna Reid An investigation into the philosophical implications of 'Type II Yips' SH Philosophy Dr. Clare Mac Cumhaill
Nicholas Reimann Towards pursuit---Reframing the debate on fine-tuning Combined Arts Dr. Peter Vickers
Kiera Rosenwold Who should make decisions in end-of-life care? Combined Arts Prof. Geoffrey Scarre
Lizzie Rudin Is it justifiable to give prisoners in the United Kingdom the right to vote? SH Philosophy Ms. Sue Lowe
Byul Ryan-Im The purpose of life: Finding universal consensus on human rights Combined Arts Dr. Liz McKinnell
Anna Saffery A philosophical investigation into the nature of grief SH Philosophy Dr. Clare Mac Cumhaill
Jacob Senior Without external programming, an artificial intelligence would act in ways which were morally unacceptable SH Philosophy Dr. Clare Mac Cumhaill
Toby Smith Modelling knowledge- and belief-based moral obligation: an accessible tool for philosophical analysis SH Philosophy Dr. Sara L. Uckelman
Gemma Stanley Essentialist theory and its usefulness to the feminist movement JH Philosophy & Psychology Dr. Sylvie Gambaudo
Emma Stubbe-Sastre From cafés to concentration camps: A critique of Sartre's Being-for-Others in historical context Combined Arts Dr. Benedict Smith
Jae Sul The methodology of Marx Graduate Diploma Dr. Richard Stopford
Cora Sweet What is it that makes an act evil? JH Philosophy & Politics Ms. Sue Lowe
Matthew Thornton Have the recent victories in the fight for equal legal status of the LGBTQIA+ community come at greater cost than they merit? Has the community abandoned its willingness to challenge gender norms in order to assimilate into heteronormative patriarchy? Combined Arts Dr. Sylvie Gambaudo
Will Throp Nietsche's anti-theory: Evaluating his alternative ethical vision in light of ancient Greek philosophy SH Philosophy Dr. Andreas Pantazatos
Jen Toothill Friedrich Nietzsche: The great moral philosopher SH Philosophy Dr. Andreas Pantazatos
Kim Tullar Clarifying and solving Newcomb's Problem Natural Sciences Dr. Sara L. Uckelman
Grace Wee Using feminist theories to uncover the ways in which Chinese patriarchy controlled women pre and post 1949 Communist Revolution SH Philosophy Dr. Liz McKinnell
Lisa Whiting Situationism and Strawson: Blameworthiness as the failure to meet a reasonable moral demand SH Philosophy Dr. Benedict Smith
Laurence Williams A Nagarjunian assessment of Nietzsche's doctrine of the will to power PPE Dr. Simon James
Justine Wong A defence and analysis of the concept of evil PPE Prof. Geoffrey Scarre
Xiyuan Yin Technocrats: Better policy makers? Graduate Diploma Prof. Julian Reiss
Sarah Yip Fantasy and desire: Using Freudian psychoanalysis to investigate the role of violent pornography in rape culture SH Philosophy Dr. Sylvie Gambaudo
Danny Zhao Why should I be moral? Karma and moral motivatio in Buddhism Combined Arts Dr. Simon James

FINAL YEAR DISSERTATIONS FROM EARLIER YEARS

Name

Supervisor

Degree Prog

College

Long/Short

Title

Morgan Bestwick

Prof Andy Hamilton

SH Philosophy

St. Chad’s

Long

The Rationality of Taboo

Chris Blake-Turner

Dr Sophie Gibb

SH Philosophy

St. Cuthbert’s

Long

Laws of Nature in a Two Category Ontology

Louise Branth

Prof Geoffrey Scarre

SH Philosophy

St. Hild and Bede

Long

Is it unjust to allow the sanction of judicial punishment to depend on an agent’s ability to be responsible for the act of which he is accused?

Jessica Callaghan

Dr Matthew Eddy

Combined Arts

Collingwood

Long

How did John Lubbock view the Pre-historic Mind?

Kathleen Cameron

Prof Holger Maehler

SH Philosophy

St. Cuthbert’s

Long

Is it ever morally justifiable to sterilise another human being?

Philippa Cappleman

Prof Geoffrey Scarre

JH Philosophy & Psychology

St. Mary’s

Short

How is a person harmed by their own death?

Rowan Clapp

Dr Ian Kidd

JH Philosophy & Theology

Hatfield

Long

Valuing Illness: Nietzsche, Naturalism, and Phenomenology

Calley Clay

Mrs Sue Lowe

SH Philosophy

St. Aidan’s

Long

The Moral Obligation of Charity: An Analysis of the Duty to Give and its Limitations

Padrig Davies

Prof Wolfram Hinzen

Natural Sciences

St. Cuthbert’s

Long

Language and Thought in Schizophrenia: A Philosophical Investigation into Formal Thought Disorder

Jennet Dixon

Prof Holger Maehler

SH Philosophy

St. Chad’s

Long

Can a Phenomenological Approach to Mental Disorders Overcome the Limitations of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders?

Joseph Pieter Donnelly

Prof Andy Hamilton

PPE

St. Mary’s

Long

The Fake Divide: T.H. Green, J.S. Mill, and their relationship across metaphysics, ethics, and political philosophy

Peter Edwarde

Dr Benedict Smith

SH Philosophy

Collingwood

Long

On the Relationship between Schopenhauer’s Theory of Ethics and his Conception of Metaphysics

Alexandra Feast

Prof Wolfram Hinzen

SH Philosophy

Hatfield

Long

Internalism and Contextualism: The dimensions of linguistic meaning

Edmund Fincham

Dr Jan Westerhoff

PPE

Trevelyan

Long

The Bodhicaryavatara: How Santideva did not destroy the bodhisattva path

Alexander Friedlaender

Mrs Sue Lowe

PPE

St. Cuthbert’s

Long

Is banning performance enhancing drugs in sport morally justifiable?

Rory Gallimore

Dr Benedict Smith

SH Philosophy

St. Cuthbert’s

Long

Nietzsche Against Utilitarianism

Catharine Gavan

Mrs Sue Lowe

Natural Sciences

St. Hild and St. Bede

Short

Opt-in vs. Opt-out: How to procure much needed organs

Eleanor Gerrans

Prof Nick Zangwill

Combined Arts

University

Long

Pluralism in the Ontology of Music: A Defence

Dominique Gibbons

Dr Jan Westerhoff

SH Philosophy

Josephine Butler

Long

How convincing is the passage in Santideva’s Bodhicaryavatara 8: 101-3 as an argument for altruism?

Freya Gibbs

Prof Geoffrey Scarre

SH Philosophy

St. Mary’s

Long

What is the moral difference, if any, between combatants killing other combatants in war and murder?

Yago Gomez-Reimo

Dr Sophie Gibb

PG Diploma, Philosophy

St. Chad’s

Long

Causation, Mechanisms, and International Relations

Hannah Hamblin

Dr Andy Hamilton

Combined Arts

University

Long

Philosophical Rhetoric and the Inducement of Aporia in Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Investigations

Callum Higham

Dr Benedict Smith

SH Philosophy

Trevelyan

Long

Is the genre of post-apocalyptic fiction an appropriate foundation for the exploration of moral ideas?

Anthony Hoad

Dr Benedict Smith

Combined Arts

St. John’s

Short

A Self-Ownership Based Right to Welfare

Michael Holliday

Prof Andy Hamilton

SH Philosophy

St. Chad’s

Long

Is music an abstract art?

Ruby Holloway

Prof Nick Zangwill

SH Philosophy

Collingwood

Long

To what extent does feminist critique show the traditional liberal justification of prostitution to be flawed?

Sebastian Inglis-Jones

Prof Geoffrey Scarre

Combined Arts

Grey

Long

Is it ever justifiable to use ‘terror tactics’ in warfare?

Douglas Ligertwood

Dr Sophie Gibb

Natural Sciences

St. Aidan’s

Short

Characterisation, Constitution, and Consistency: A response to E.J. Lowe’s four category ontology

Edward MacIntosh

Dr Benedict Smith

SH Philosophy

St. Cuthbert’s

Long

Focusing on Folk Psychology and Phenomenology: how can we have an intersubjective understanding of others, and is this essential for an ability to view them as persons and to predict their behaviour?

Kirsty Muckle

Dr Benedict Smith

SH Philosophy

Josephine Butler

Long

Why can’t metaphysics define the nature of evil?

James Phippen

Dr Andreas Pantazatos

SH Philosophy

St. Hild and St. Bede

Long

Nietzsche’s Positive Ethical Vision: An anti-theorist interpretation

Ben Plumb

Prof Geoffrey Scarre

SH Philosophy

Grey

Long

Evolutionary Hedonism: Ethics, Pleasure, and the Theory of Evolution

Max Rawlinson

Mrs Sue Lowe

SH Philosophy

St. Cuth’s

Long

The order police have been condemned in history as evil men for the atrocities committed in World War II. Is this just or has the concept of evil been unfairly applied?

Thomas Rossetter

Prof Robin Hendry

SH Philosophy

St. Cuth’s

Long

On Thought Experiments in Science: Toward a Realist-Empiricist Account

Vartam Sanisar

Prof Geoffrey Scarre

SH Philosophy

Hatfield

Long

In search of a Framework for Understanding Moral Theory

Andrew Savill

Dr Andreas Pantazatos

SH Philosophy

St. Mary’s

Long

Business’s Obligations to Future Generations and Sustainability: A Kantian perspective

Jamie Sherman

Prof Julian Reiss

Natural Sciences

St. Mary’s

Long

Regulating Science: How can a society obtain the greatest benefit from its scientific resources?

Toby Simmons

Prof Geoffrey Scarre

SH Philosophy

St. John’s

Long

The Freedom to Be: A Philosophical Study of Forgiveness

Alys Tarr

Dr Peter Vickers

Natural Sciences

Collingwood

Short

Is there Room for Free Will in a Quantum Mechanical Universe?

Charles Thursby-Pelham

Prof Holger Maehler

Natural Sciences

St. Hild and St. Bede

Long

Does the Dutch Experience of Legalised Euthanasia Provide a Good Model for the UK to Follow?

David Van Pooyen

Mrs Sue Lowe

Graduate Diploma

St. Mary’s

Long

The Case for Freedom of Expression and the Case Against Blasphemy Laws

Jessica Waite

Dr Sylvie Gambaudo

Combined Arts

St. Cuthbert’s

Long

The Cult of Plath: Ecriture feminine and the deconstruction of a myth

Rebecca Wallbank

Dr Sylvie Gambaudo

SH Philosophy

Hatfield

Long

Christianity should not necessarily be regarded as a patriarchal mode of oppression: Is religious sacrifice really a sacrifice?

Josephine Walters

Dr Donnchadh O’Conaill

SH Philosophy

St. Mary’s

Long

Thought Insertion and the Cognitive Debate

Ibrahim Warsama

Prof Andy Hamilton

SH Philosophy

Josephine Butler

Long

Marx, Exploitation, and Morality

Ralf Webb

Dr Sylvie Gambaudo

SH Philosophy

University

Long

Saussurean Semiotics: Differance, temporality, and the conditions of the system

William Webb

Dr Simon James

SH Philosophy

Van Mildert

Long

Zen, Virtue, and Moral Particularism

Luke Wilson

Dr Andreas Pantazatos

JH English and Philosophy

St. Cuthbert’s

Short

The Rebirth of Virtue

Olivia Wilson-Holt

Dr Matthew Eddy

Natural Sciences

Hatfield

Long

How did Darwin use Analogy in a Visual Strategy in The Descent of Man?