“Dialogues with Phil and Sophia – Who’s Moving?”

Recent graduate and philosophy major Nick Navarro ’15 has a strong interest in philosophy for children. So strong, in fact, that he wrote a philosophical book for children as an independent study in conjunction with his senior seminar (both taught by Ariela Tubert). Nick wanted to get children to think about the same issues that were being read and discussed in the senior seminar, and thus, the book project was born.

Dialogues with Phil and Sophia – Who’s Moving? follows the adventures of siblings Phil and Sophia as they work through some big questions about personal identity and agency. As Nick describes the book, “Phil and Sophia along the way practice thinking philosophically, questioning everything they encounter. From trees to pastries, each chapter discusses how reflection, relationships, reasoning, and resistance are meaningful to developing an identity. “

The book includes spaces for the readers to interact, noting their own philosophical questions and thoughts, as well as discussion questions at the end of each chapter. The book also includes artwork by illustrator Avery Aresu.

Following is a brief excerpt of Nick’s work. See if you can recognize the philosopher whose work inspired this encounter!


If you guessed Derek Parfit, you’re right! Other chapters of the book make use of the work of Marya Schechtman, Paul Katsafanas, and Christine Korsgaard, giving the overall story its strong theme of questioning personal identity, but presenting this topic in ways that children can understand and grapple with for themselves.

For the end of the academic year, several excerpts from Nick’s book were enlarged and put up as an exhibit in Wyatt Hall, as shown below:

Navarro Exhibit 1Navarro Exhibit 2

Nick provides the following information about himself in relation to the book:

Nicolas Navarro dreams of a world driven by insatiable inquiry. Hoping to spark curiosity and imagination in everyone, Nicolas writes with the values of philosophy in mind so others may find satisfaction through pursuing wisdom.

Recently completing his B.A. in Philosophy and Psychology from the University of Puget Sound, this is Nicolas’ first novel before he continues his studies, pursuing a M.S.Ed. in Community and Social Change from the University of Miami. On the horizon, Nicolas plans to apply for the Peace Corps and to continue writing philosophy novels for children.

I (Nicolas) think the most important way I can impact people’s lives is to teach them to think philosophically. Philosophy values a dialogue by which ideas can be discussed to develop meaning and broaden one’s experience. Doing philosophy inherently teaches people to think critically about the decisions they make and to become more accepting of others’ views. I hope you enjoy the book!

Want to read more? Nick’s book is now for sale on Amazon! Congratulations Nick!

Ethics Bowl Competition at UPS

On Friday, April 22, our campus will be hosting the Independent Colleges of Washington Ethics Bowl Competition. An Ethics Bowl is a collaborative yet competitive event in which teams analyze a series of wide-ranging ethical dilemmas.  Each of the rounds is open to the public.

For more information about this event, see the attached poster or go the ICW Website for the event.  For more information about Ethics Bowl at Puget Sound, check the Puget Sound Ethics Bowl Program page.

ethics bowl competition poster

ASUPS Lectures hosts Warren KingGeorge

ASUPS Lectures is hosting Warren KingGeorge of the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe to speak on campus on Wednesday April 20th at 6:30pm in the Tahoma Room.

Warren is the Oral Historian for the Muckleshoot tribe, his talk is titled, The Importance of Place, and he will be speaking on issues of sovereignty, resources, and co-management facing Indian tribes today.

kinggeorge (1).jpg


Judith Wechsler is an art historian primarily of 19th century French art, who has engaged in inter- disciplinary studies: the intersection of art and theater, art and film, caricature and physiognomy, art and science. She has written and directed 27 films on art, informed by her scholarship.

Aby Warburg: Metamorphosis and Memory

Aby Warburg (1866–1929) was an innovative and influential art historian whose interests ranged from the Italian Renaissance to Hopi ritual dances, from frescoes to postage stamps.


The Passages of Walter Benjamin

Walter Benjamin’s Arcades Project, a monumental study of 19th century Paris, is the focus of this one hour documentary.


Residency sponsored by Catharine Gould Chism Fund for the Humanities and the Arts and Department of Religion


Call for Papers: Northwest Undergraduate Conference

Call for Papers:

North Idaho College in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho is hosting the first annual Northwest Undergraduate Conference in the Humanities on Saturday, November 5, 2016. The purpose of this conference is to give undergraduate students from around the region the opportunity to present their work in a public and professional academic setting. We invite submissions of original scholarship, including creative work, focusing on any area of the humanities including, but not limited to, the following disciplines: literature, creative writing, philosophy, ancient and modern languages, history, ethnic studies, religious studies, women’s studies, cultural studies, film and visual culture, and the fine arts.

Presentations must take the form of 10-15 minute papers or readings (about 6 to 8 double-spaced pages). Submissions are due Friday, September 30, 2016.

For more information about the conference and how to register, visit their website.

Northwest Humanities Conference Flier.jpg

Call for Submissions

The Black Student Union would like to extend an invitation to the faculty and students of the Philosophy department to submit their works to the Black Student Union’s Literary Magazine Black Ice. Their literary magazine focuses on issues and experiences related to race and the intersectionality of identity. They accept anything in print form, such as art pieces, prose, essays, photographs, and poetry, etc.

Please note, submissions do not have to be submitted by people of color. Their mission is to offer a platform for voices, narratives, and social critique that would not be otherwise heard or invited.

Submissions are due by April 11th to bsu@pugetsound.edu, and will be published this semester.