Kenneth Shockley (PhD, Washington, St. Louis) holds the Holmes Rolston III chair in Environmental Ethics and Philosophy in the Department of Philosophy at Colorado State University. He has published widely in his areas of specialization: Environmental Philosophy, Climate Ethics, Philosophy of Ecology, Sustainability and Ethical Theory.
One of his current research projects is an examination of the way human flourishing is coupled to ecological systems, and the way climate change compromises that coupling. His current book project is an examination of the role of narrative in drawing together the private reasons we have that move us to act and the public reasons we use to justify actions and policies. His focus on narrative is probably related to something he heard from one of his own professors while a study abroad student: “the meaning of life is the accumulation of cool stories, whether those stories are yours or someone else’s. Listen, ask, tell, and learn.” He can’t imagine a better opportunity for the accumulation of cool stories than Semester at Sea.
Shockley has extensive experience abroad. He taught Mathematics, Chemistry, Physics, Logic, and the Philosophy of Science as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Malaŵi, researched the ethical dimensions of group membership as a Fulbright fellow in Australia, and studied Philosophy and Classics as an undergraduate exchange student at the University of Warwick. He has lectured, presented, taught or been taught on six continents.
Through his research and teaching he takes as paramount the inclusion of the widest range of perspectives. Philosophy involves making connections that haven’t been made, questioning our presuppositions, and reimagining possibilities. These explorations, reflected in his classes, require different, even novel points of view. They are best approached collaboratively. And they are a great means of accumulating cool stories.
He is thrilled to be joined on the voyage by his partner, Jennifer, and son, Brady. They’ve both done their share of traveling and wandering, and this experience is one they are all excited to share.