Matthew Babb

Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow (2017-2019)


Philosophy of Language, Philosophy of Mind, Ethics, Social and Political Philosophy


Matthew Babb received his PhD in Philosophy from University of Southern California, in 2017. His research focuses primarily on directives, as when a parent commands their child to clean up or a government official pleas for citizens to stop protesting. His dissertation and graduate school research examined the structure, function, and content of directives by way of the structure, function, and content of imperative sentences, which are those sentences paradigmatically used to issue directives. During his time as a Postdoctoral Fellow in Modeling Interdisciplinary Inquiry at Wash U, Matt will be turning his attention to the ethics side of directives, inquiring into who is culpable – director or directee – when a directive has undesirable consequences, and, equally, who is praiseworthy when a directive has desirable consequences.


‘The Essential Indexicality of Intentional Action’, Philosophical Quarterly, vol. 66 (264), pp. 439-457.


Ph.D., Philosophy, University of Southern California
M.A., Philosophy, Northern Illinois University
B.A., Philosophy, Northern Illinois University