Welcome to the Agora



Tues and Thurs 9:00-9:45 am (DeVos Center Atrium, 1st floor of wing C, Pew Campus–Grand Rapids), Wed 4:00–5:00pm (Allendale office or via Zoom), and by arrangement.



— FALL 2022 —

ENS 401: Environmental Problem Solving
Sec. 02

PHI 220: Aesthetics
Secs. 01 and 02


ENS 201: Introduction to Environmental and Sustainability Studies
ENS 401: Environmental Problem Solving (Capstone)
LIB 100: Introduction to Liberal Education
LIB 330: The Idea of Nature
LIB 322: Wicked Problems of Sustainability
LIB 495: Senior Seminar (Capstone)
PHI 101: Introduction to Philosophy
PHI 102: Ethics
PHI 220: Aesthetics
PHI 230: American Philosophy
PHI 304: Recent Great Philosophers
PHI 325: Ethics in Professional Life
PHI 335: Philosophy and Democracy
PHI 376: Community Working Classics—Ecological Literacy and Sustainability
PHI 380: Environmental Philosophy (Special Topics)
PHI 495: Reality, Knowledge and Value (Capstone)


  • Pragmatism

    The work of the classical American pragmatists and their circle is a rich philosophical resource for our own age. Charles S. Peirce, William James, Josiah Royce, John Dewey, Jane Addams, Alain Locke, George Santayana, and Alfred North Whitehead are among this distinctive group of late 19th and early 20th century philosophers. They emphasize process, historical context, purposiveness, and evolution in our understanding of the world. Here is a starting list of key sources for American Philosophy.

  • Raphael

    The ancients sought a philosophy of beauty; we moderns and post-moderns are looking for a philosophy of art. Pragmatism and semeiotics offer a promising framework for understanding the place of art and our ways of evaluating it.

  • gallery 3

    Environmentalists need philosophical guidance; philosophy needs environmental guidance. Environmental pragmatism offers an emphasis on civic philosophical engagement, offers ways to re-think our responsibilities to future generations and the non-human world, and suggests that a much greater awareness of historical and physical embodiment is needed in philosophy more generally.

  • gallery 4

    In order to address environmental problems we need to draw on all pertinent knowledge about humans' relatins to their environments. Science, economics and politics, and the humanities are all relevant to figuring things out. My approach to environmental studies puts the knowledge and skills of liberal education, and especially philosophy, at the center of these efforts.




Environmental Justice: Sources for Teaching Bibliography for my undergraduate course in environmental justice.
History and principles of EJ, tools, and case studies with U.S. and Michigan focus. May 2023. via Direct link (no academia account needed).

Climate Change: What We Know, What We Don’t Know, What We Can Do, & What Happens If We Don’t An overview for non-specialists and educators. Updated May 2023.
via Direct link (no academia account needed).

Barriers to Becoming Lake People: Social Equity and Environmental Justice in Muskegon Lake South Shoreline Access.

Interdisciplinary Research and Problem Solving: A Guide for Students.

Josiah Royce: article in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

Ousiology: blogging Aristotle's Metaphysics (Summer 2009).

Thargelion: a slideshow of my scanned reading notes on Plato's Gorgias (Summer 2007). 42 pages. Once in the slideshow, click on the page image to enlarge.

noemata: a slideshow of my scanned reading notes on Husserl and Merleau-Ponty (Winter 2006). 44 pages. Click on the page image to enlarge.

New Diagram of Semeiotic Process An animated illustration of signs in action!

The Spirit of Two Communities: Charles S. Peirce and Josiah Royce on Scientific and Religious Community. American Academy of Religion (2001).

Notes on Open Source in Education, from Kalamazoo Linux Users Group Presentation (May 2001).

Open Sources and the Open Society: An Essay in Politics and Technology. Computer Scientists for Social Responsibility (May-June 2000).

Notes on Environmental Pragmatism. SAAP Summer Institute on Pragmatism, Burlington, VT (July 1999).

Charles S. Peirce on Esthetics and Ethics: A Bibliography. Online publication (1999).

The Ascent of Soul to Nous: Charles S. Peirce as Neoplatonist. International Society for Neoplatonic Studies (1995).

Joseph Brent's Peirce: The Question of Ethics. Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy (1994).

Public Hearings / Hearing Publics: A Pragmatic Approach to Applying Ethics. Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy (1993).

Dissertation Abstract: The Principle of Continuity in Charles S. Peirce's Phenomenology and Semeiotic. Vanderbilt University. (1992)


My office is in Mackinac Hall on the GVSU Allendale campus, though my teaching and office hours are often elsewhere. Please contact me to be sure we both know where we're meeting.

icon 1 Department of Philoosphy
B3-200 Mackinac Hall
Grand Valley State University
Allendale, Michigan, 49401 USA

icon 2 (office) 616-331-3257 (dept.) 616-331-2114

icon 3kellyaparker.net

icon 4parkerk@gvsu.edu or kap@protonmail.com

icon 5 Connect on Facebook

Cease conceiving of education as mere preparation for later life, and make it the full meaning of the present life.