• Philippe Biermann

    Theoretical Philosophy

    © Philippe Biermann

Philippe Biermann, M.A.

Doctoral student/Research assistant at the chair of theoretical philosophy

© Philippe Biermann

Department of Philosophy
PO Box 10 01 31, 33501 Bielefeld

Office: X-A4-250
Office hours: by arrangement



If you have any questions about study matters, you can simply write me an e-mail in which you clearly state your request.

E-mail address: pbiermann@uni-bielefeld.de

I do not have regular office hours. If you would like to make an appointment, please send me an e-mail stating the purpose of your meeting. I hold my office hours online via Zoom and will provide you with the access data for my meeting room.


If you are looking for more informal contact, I can also be found on social media. (See sidebar above)

© Crawford Jolly on Unsplash

Evolutionary Debunking Arguments (EDAs) are currently a hotly debated topic, especially in metaethics. The idea: Assuming that moral facts exist mind-independently and thus claim to be objective and discoverable, we need a theory of how we can gain knowledge about these facts. However, according to the debunker, there is an insurmountable obstacle: the evolution of our psychological mechanisms. Since our moral judgments can be wonderfully explained by evolutionarily useful cognitive mechanisms without having to resort to the truth of the judgments, it seems that it would have to be a huge coincidence if these judgments were indeed true. And it is completely unclear how we can circumvent these biologically anchored attitude dispositions.

In my dissertation, I will generalize this argument form and apply it to other areas. It seems that our judgments are influenced in many ways by evolutionary processes. Our sensory perceptions (taste, smell, but also visual perception) seem to work as they do because our hunter-gatherer ancestors have gained an advantage that has nothing to do with the accuracy of the resulting mental content. But the same effect can also be seen in areas such as mathematics, language, folk psychology, and many more. What does this say about the reliability of these belief-forming processes?

Winter 2020

Research semester

Summer 2020

Führen unsere Instinkte uns in die Irre? Evolutionäre Psychologie und Erkenntnistheorie [BA Seminar] (Evolutionary psychology and Epistemology)

Skeptizismus [BA Seminar/Philosophischer Einstieg] (Skepticism)

Winter 2019

Research semester

Summer 2019

Sinn Bedeutung, Bekanntschaft - Die Sprachphilosophie von Frege und Russell [BA Seminar] (Sense, Reference, Acquaintance - The philosophy of language of Frege and Russell)

Winter 2018

Wie verlässlich ist unser moralischer Kompass? Evolutionstheorie und Moralischer Realismus [BA Seminar] (Evolutionary theory and moral realism)

Term papers

Here you will find my guide to term papers, which informs you about my expectations, formalities, tips and tricks and more. If you want to write a term paper with me, I expect you to have read the guideline. The handout is in German.



If you are looking for support in time and task management, you will find material from me here. The documents were created for a workshop by me, but are also easily accessible on their own. All the documents are in German. If you have specific questions or need support, you can contact me.

Here you can find my CV.

(The current version is german. I plan on an update to an English version)