Thomas Pashby

About me

I'm interested in the history and philosophy of science, of physics, and metaphysics. What motivates me is the idea that modern physics contains important insights into how things are, and it's up to us as philosophers of physics to figure them out.

I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Chicago. From 2014-2016 I was a Provost's Postdoctoral Scholar in the Humanities at the University of Southern California.

In 2014 I received my PhD from the department of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Pittsburgh. My dissertation, Time and the Foundations of Quantum Mechanics, was directed by John Earman and John D. Norton.

Much of my work has been about how quantum theory relates to issues in philosophy of science and metaphysics. I think we can learn a lot by using modern physics to test our ideas about metaphysics, and by using metaphysical questions to probe our interpretations of physical theories. My current focus is on the feasibility of Russell's relational theory of time within classical, relativistic and quantum physics. Recently I've become interested in the development and interrelation of Russell and Whitehead's views on theoretical structure and their uses of event ontology as a unifying metaphysics for science.

Department of Philosophy
University of Chicago
1115 East 58th Street
Chicago, IL 60637 3709