Photo by Todd Waterman
I am Professor Emeritus in Philosophy at the University of Tennessee and a Research Fellow in the Energy and Environment program of the Howard Baker Jr. Center for Public policy. My current areas of expertise are logic, environmental and intergenerational ethics, and formal value theory. I have authored, co-authored, or edited four books on environmental matters and three on logic. My most recent book, Incomparable Values: Analysis, Axiomatics, and Applications (Routledge 2022), is a departure from these topics, but not unrelated. It argues that both consequentialist ethics and rational decision theory can be enriched and clarified by recognition of pervasiveness of incomparable values. (Value incomparability is value difference without superiority—and hence without inferiority.)
My wife, Annette Mendola, also a philosopher, is Director of Clinical Ethics at UT Medical Center and an Associate Professor in the University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine. Between us we have three adult children and two grandchildren. In an effort to live sustainably, we grow much of our own food in organic gardens, dry our clothes on a line, shun air conditioning, and with an array of solar panels produce more electricity than we use.
Photo by Ben Hale