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Matthew Boyle is a professor of philosophy at Harvard University. He works both on topics in the philosophy of mind and on some issues in the history of philosophy. In the former area, he has been especially concerned with the question of how we know our own minds and with debates about the scope and limits of such knowledge. In the latter field, he has written mainly on the philosophy of Immanuel Kant, although he also has strong interests in the work of Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas, Johann Gottlieb Fichte, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, and Jean-Paul Sartre.
At the Radcliffe Institute, Boyle aims to complete a book manuscript on the distinction between rational and nonrational minds, the connection between rationality and the capacity for first-person awareness of one’s own cognitive activity, and the continuing relevance of the classical philosophical distinction between rational and nonrational animals to contemporary debates in philosophy and psychology. The book, to be called The Significance of Self-Consciousness, is under contract with Oxford University Press.
Boyle holds a BPhil from the University of Oxford and a PhD from the University of Pittsburgh. He has held visiting positions at the University of Chicago, the Universität Leipzig, in Germany, and the Universität Basel, in Switzerland. He has been the recipient of an ACLS Fellowship, a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship, a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, and a Rhodes Scholarship.