— Tuomo Tiisala — (2022)

Senior Fellow Emeriti

Tuomo Tiisala is a philosopher working widely in social and political philosophy, including social theories of concepts and cognition. His work draws broadly from Anglophone and European philosophical traditions alike. 

In particular, Tuomo’s forthcoming book uses pragmatist and inferentialist resources from Wittgenstein, Sellars, and Brandom to offer a novel interpretation of Michel Foucault’s philosophical work, which identifies a previously undetected problem as the core concern that unifies Foucault’s seemingly disparate studies of knowledge, power, and ethics. The problem concerns the power that concepts have over our thought and action by structuring a shared understanding through discourse as a social practice. The ultimate goal is to show that this problem is ethical in character. In light of the ideal of autonomy, one is ethically required to work on one’s understanding, besides the will, in order to bring the power of concepts under rational control.

As Senior Fellow, Tuomo will be completing the book project and developing a new line of research that investigates conceptual, diagnostic, and normative questions concerning digital relations of power in democratic society. Tuomo’s other research interests include metaphysics and politics of human kinds, metaphysics of normativity, conceptual ethics and conceptual engineering, as well as philosophical uses of history.

After earning his PhD from the University of Chicago in 2016, Tuomo was a Bersoff Faculty Fellow at NYU’s Philosophy Department. He has also taught at NYU Abu Dhabi and the University of Helsinki. Tuomo’s research has been published (or is forthcoming) in Critical InquiryEuropean Journal of Philosophy, and Journal of the American Philosophical Association, among others.