About Me


Hello! My name is Rowan Bell. I am a PhD candidate and teaching associate in the Department of Philosophy at Syracuse University, and I expect to receive my doctorate by the spring of 2022. My advisor is Hille Paakkunainen, with committee members Katharine Jenkins, Kara Richardson, and Verena Erlenbusch-Anderson. I hold a Bachelor of Science with a double major in Philosophy and Psychology from East Tennessee State University.


I primarily work in analytic philosophy, at the intersection of metaethics, feminist philosophy, and trans philosophy. My research also draws from sociology, social epistemology, critical theory, and decolonial theory. I seek to understand how norms, normative standards, and normative concepts are shaped by systems of oppressive power, so that they in turn shape individual behavior at the level of practical deliberation. Put simply, I want to explain how social norms make us complicit in systems of oppression by shaping what we feel like we ought to do.


I live in the Westcott neighborhood in Syracuse, NY with my spouse, Justin, and our cat, Zoya. In my spare time, I like to knit, run, climb rocks, ride my road bike, and drink fine bourbon and rye. Before the pandemic I led the graduate students from the Syracuse University Philosophy Department to two trivia championships at the Inn Complete; one day I hope to take up that banner again.


I use they/them or he/him pronouns.


For more about me, you can read my APA Member Interview here, or find me on PhilPeople.