Professor Amie Thomasson

Dartmouth’s Thomasson Wins the APA Sanders Book Prize with Easy Approach to Ontology

The American Philosophical Association is pleased to announce that Professor Amie Thomasson (Dartmouth College) has been awarded the 2017 Sanders Book Prize for her book, Ontology Made Easy (Oxford University Press).

The selection committee has also awarded honorable mention to Professor Elliott Sober (University of Wisconsin–Madison) for his book, Ockham’s Razors: A User’s Manual (Cambridge University Press).

The annual Sanders Book Prize, in the amount of $7,000, is awarded to the best book in philosophy of mind, metaphysics, or epistemology that engages the analytic tradition published in English in the previous five-year period. This prize is funded through the generosity of the Marc Sanders Foundation.

Thomasson earned her Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of California, Irvine. She is currently professor of philosophy at Dartmouth College. Before coming to Dartmouth, she was professor of philosophy and Cooper Fellow at the University of Miami, and she has held positions at the University of Hong Kong and Texas Tech University. Thomasson works in the areas of metaphysics, philosophical methodology and metaontology, philosophy of art, philosophy of social and cultural objects, philosophy of mind, and phenomenology.

In addition to Ontology Made Easy, Thomasson has authored two other books: Ordinary Objects (Oxford University Press, 2007) and Fiction and Metaphysics (Cambridge University Press, 1999). She also co-edited (with David W. Smith) a collection of essays, Phenomenology and Philosophy of Mind (Oxford University Press, 2005). Thomasson has published more than 60 book chapters and articles on topics in metaphysics, metaontology, fiction, philosophy of mind and phenomenology, the philosophy of art, and social ontology.

The selection committee chair stated, “Amie Thomasson’s book, Ontology Made Easy, is a beautifully written defense of one of the most influential and most often discussed positions in contemporary metaphysics—her own deflationary take on existence propositions. This book also casts a new light on the debate between Quine and Carnap, a debate that has informed much of contemporary metaphysics, and defends her minimalist view against objections. It will be widely discussed in the years to come.”

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