Ethics (Theoretical and Applied), Philosophy of Law, Environmental Philosophy, Philosophy of Religion
Ethics; Law and ethics of war, self-defense, and punishment; Philosophy of religion.
Just War theory; Law and ethics of personal self-defense and also self-defense as justification for war; Moral justifications for punishment; Evolutionary theories of ethics; Relationship between science and religion.
- Ph.D., (1998), Georgetown University - Washington, D.C.
Dissertation/Thesis Title:Intending versus Foreseeing Harm: The Foundation of Deontological Constraints
- JD, (1989), Harvard Law School - Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
- BA: English, (1985), Yale University - New Haven, Connecticut, United States
Selected Awards and Honors
- Teaching Award (2011), Teaching - Department of Philosophy
- Kaufman, W. (2016). Human Nature and the Limits of Darwinism (pp. vi, 222 pages). Palgrave Macmillan
- Kaufman, W.R. (2016). Revenge as the Dark Double of Retributive Punishment. Philosophia, 44(2) 317-325.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2016). The Doctrine of Double Effect and the Trolley Problem. Journal of Value Inquiry, 50(1) 21–31.
- Kaufman, W.R., Kaufman, W. (2014). Does Animal Ethics Need a Darwinian Revolution? Ethical Theory & Moral Practice, 17(4) 807-818.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2014). Why Science Does Not Refute Free Will. Southwest Philosophy Review, 30(1).
- Kaufman, W.R. (2013). The Evolutionary Ethics of E. O. Wilson. New Atlantis: A Journal of Technology & Society, 38 140-149.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2012). Can Science Determine Moral Values? A Reply to Sam Harris. Neuroethics, 5(1) 55-65.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2012). Honor and Revenge: A Theory of Punishment. Springer
- Kaufman, W.R. (2011). Understanding Honor: Beyond the Shame/Guilt Dichotomy. Social Theory and Practice, 37(4) 557-573.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2010). Self-defense, Innocent Aggressors, and the Duty of Martyrdom. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly, 91(1) 78-96.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2009). Justified Killing : The Paradox of Self-defense. Lexington Books
- Kaag, J., Kaufman, W.R. (2009). Military Frameworks: Technological Know-how and the Legitimization of Warfare. Cambridge Review of International Affairs, 22(4) 585-606.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2008). The rise and fall of the mixed theory of punishment. International journal of applied philosophy, 22(1) 37-58.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2008). Torture and the "Distributive Justice" Theory of Self-Defense: An Assessment. Ethics & International Affairs, 22(1) 93-115.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2007). Karma, rebirth, and the problem of evil: A reply to critics. Philosophy East and West, 57(4) 556-560.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2007). Self-defense, imminence, and the battered woman. New Criminal Law Review, 10(3) 342-369.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2005). What's Wrong with Preventive War? The Moral and Legal Basis for the Preventive Use of Force. Ethics & International Affairs, 19(3) 23-38.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2004). Is there a "right" to self-defense? Criminal Justice Ethics, 23(1) 20-32.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2004). Terrorism, Self-Defense, and the Killing of the Innocent. Social Philosophy Today, 20 41-52.
- Kaufman, W.R., Kaufman, W., , , , , , Anderson-Gold, S. (2004). War and Terrorism. Social philosophy today, 20 15-164.
- Kaufman, W.R. (2003). Motive, Intention, and Morality in the Criminal Law (pp. 19-19). Criminal Justice Review, vol. 28, no. 2, pp. 317 - 335, Autumn 2003
- Why Punishment is Revenge, and Why That's Not Necessarily a Bad Thing, May 2014 - Schenectedy, NY
- Is The Law of War Based on a Mistake - Boston College Graduate Student Workshop, November 2013
- Does Science Refute Free Will? - Southwest Philosophy Conference, November 2013 - Fredericksburg, Texas
- Is the Law of War Based on a Mistake? - Boston College Graduate Student Workshop, October 2013 - Boston, Massachusetts, United States
- The Myth of the Psychopath - Northern New England Philosophy Conference, August 2013 - Dartmouth College
- Does Evolution Have A Sense of Humor - Mind and Mirth, April 2013
- How Science Proves the Existence of Free Will - Conference on Value Inquiry, April 2012 - Salem, Massachusetts, United States
- What Does Evolution Tell Us About Animal Rights?, April 2012 - Burlington, Vermont
- The Morality of Targeted Killing - Ethics of Assassination Symposium, March 2012
- Is Retribution A Moral Primitive?, October 2010 - Manchester, New Hampshire, United States
- Sweet Revenge: Can Retributive Punishment Be Justified? - International Conference on Justice Research, August 2010 - Banff, Canada
- Some Fallacies About Honor, October 2009 - Durham, NH
- Why Science And Religion Need Each Other - Thoreau Society Lyceum Series, April 2009 - Concord, MA
- In Defense of Preventive War - –A World of Warfare," International Affairs Symposium, April 2009 - Portland, Oregon
- Some Questions for the Expressive Theory of Punishment - Northeastern Political Science Association conference, November 2008 - Boston, MA
- The Right of Self-Defense: Its History and Meaning - Parker Lecture Series, September 2008 - Lowell, MA
- Does Affirmative Action Violate the Right To Be Treated As An Individual? - Does Affirmative Action Violate the Right To Be Treated As An Individual?, October 2007 - Dartmouth, MA
- Does Affirmative Action Violate the Right To Be Treated As An Individual? - Northern New England Philosophy Conference, October 2007 - Dartmouth, MA
- On the Transcendental Argument for Retributive Punishment, May 2007 - Orono, Maine
- Targeting the Sleeping Soldier, January 2007 - Springfield, Virginia
- What's Wrong With Pre-emptive War?, 2005 - Canadian Embassy, Washington, D.C.
- What's Wrong With Pre-Emptive War - Joint Services Conference on Professional Ethics, January 2005 - Springfield, Virginia
- The Ethics of Assassination - Joint Services Conference on Professional Ethics, January 2004 - Springfield, Virginia
- The Morality of the Iraq War - Colloquium on the Iraq War, 2003 - Fox Hall, UMass Lowell
- Terrorism, Self-Defense and Consequentialism, July 2003 - Kansas City
- Iraq War and the Just War Doctrine - Iraq War Teach-In, March 2003
- Terrorism, Collateral Damage, and Civilian Immunity - Joint Services Conference on Professional Ethics, January 2003 - Springfield, Virginia
- Why Would Someone Do Wrong Knowingly?, November 2002 - Kansas City, Missouri
- Swinburne, Instrumentalism, and Theodicy, October 2001 - Boulder, Colorado
- Motive and Intention in the Criminal Law - Northwest Conference in Philosophy, November 2000 - Forest Grove, Oregon
- Justified Homicide in the Criminal Law - Pacific Division Annual Meeting, April 2000 - Albuquerque, New Mexico
- The Doctrine of Justification in the Criminal Law: Choosing Between Two Models of Practical Rationality - Northwest Conference in Philosophy, October 1999 - Coeur d'Alene, Idaho