Tricks of the Mind poster

Welcome to my website.

I am an English philosopher and writer, currently living in Crete. I am a Visiting Research Fellow with The Open University, UK (where I was formerly a Senior Lecturer) and an Adjunct Professor with the Brain and Mind Programme at the University of Crete. I work mainly in philosophy of psychology and philosophy mind, though I have interests in many other areas of philosophy.

This website contains:

  • news of my recent and forthcoming public activities, academic and otherwise
  • my blog which contains short essays in philosophy of psychology and other topics
  • an introduction to my research, which is mainly in philosophy of psychology
  • a list of papers I have written, with abstracts and eprints
  • details of books I have written or edited, with sample chapters and reviews
  • details of academic talks I have given, with abstracts and presentations
  • records of conferences I have organized, with programmes, abstracts, presentations, and photographs
  • teaching resources for students of my neurophilosophy course at the University of Crete
  • some short humorous pieces, mostly culled from my twitter posts
  • an archive of my twitter stream, automatically updated
  • some of my poetry readings
  • some information about me, in the form of a brief autobiographical sketch
  • a photo gallery

The title of this site, Tricks of Mind, reflects the role that notions of illusion and artifice play in my thinking about human mentality. In particular, I hold that our conceptions of consciousness and the self are the product of an adaptive introspective illusion (an inner ‘magic show’ as Nicholas Humphrey puts it), and that our conscious minds are to some extent artificial constructions, which we create by employing strategies of self-manipulation (‘good tricks’ in Daniel Dennett’s phrase). (Derren Brown has previously used the title Tricks of the Mind for a book on the structure and psychology of magic, and its use here may be considered a homage to a master illusionist.)