Eric Barnes

Eric BarnesProfessor of PhilosophyChair, Philosophy

Joined faculty in 2004

Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
M.A., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
B.A., Hampshire College

Contact Information

Delancey HousePhone (315) 781-3182

Scholarly Interest

  • Moral, Political and Legal Philosophy
  • Applied Ethics (particularly Bioethics)
  • Rational Choice Theory
  • Paradoxes
  • Debate

Teaching Experience

  • University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign 
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute
  • Mount Holyoke College



  • On Righteous Indignation
  • The Newcomb Paradox, with Penn & Teller
  • Optimizing the Sorting Mechanism of Preliminary Debates
  • Assessing the Reliability of Debate Judges
  • The Anatomy of Slippery Slopes
  • The Surprise Test Paradox Revisited

Courses Taught

  • Debating Public Policy
  • Puzzles and Paradoxes
  • Thinking Critically About God
  • History of Moral Theory
  • Kant
  • Moral Dilemmas
  • Biomedical Ethics
  • Cooperation, Competition and Justice



  • Philosophy in Practice:  Understanding Value Debate
  • “Burning Their Bridges: The ethics of disparaging consistent arguments in British parliamentary debate”
  • “Burn This Book: Why Theorizing About Judging is Dangerous for British Parliamentary Debate”
  • “Autism in a family in China: An investigation and ethical consideration of sibling issues”
  • “Fairly Expanding the Break at the World Universities Debating Championship: A Comparison of Three Proposals”
  • “Should We Welcome a Cure for Autism? A Survey of the Arguments”
  • “The Problem of Clean Hands: Elections and Obfuscation”
  • “For a Truth Burden in Lincoln-Douglas Debate: What Constitutes Winning”
  • “Using Lincoln-Douglas Debate in Urban Debate Leagues”
  • “Gauthier and a Contractarian Dilemma”
  • “Reefer Madness: Legal & Moral Issues Surrounding the Medical Prescription of Marijuana”
  • “Constraint Games and the Orthodox Theory of Rationality”
  • “Rationality, Dispositions, and the Newcomb Paradox”