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Coleen Patricia Zoller, Ph.D.

Department: Philosophy

Associate Professor of Philosophy

Program Director of GO Greece

Department Head of Philosophy

  • Education
  • PHD, Emory University
  • MA, Emory University
  • BA, Bucknell University
Coleen Zoller

Philosophy is my passion, and sharing it with my students is a joy. Sometimes both teacher and student can feel as though they're supposed to turn off their personality when in the classroom. But I try to bring my real self to the classroom because education is so much more meaningful if you connect it with your real life.

There is merit in loving wisdom for its own sake, but I want students to make use of the philosophical theories they study. In that spirit, the courses I teach take up topics that are relevant in the world today. For example, over a billion human beings live in extreme poverty, going without food, potable water, shelter, healthcare, or education. Many Americans aren't even aware of this grave problem. People who have their own basic needs met must ask what moral obligation they have to those who don't. The discipline of philosophy invites us to think critically about how to answer ethical questions like this one.

One of the other aspects of my work with students that I find very exciting is the GO Greece program. This two-week program focuses on Greek culture, both ancient and modern. As a Plato scholar, I find it thrilling to visit the Agora in Athens, for example, where Socrates engaged in philosophical discourse each day. Even though Greek philosophy flourished over 2,000 years ago, the questions and concerns of Greek philosophers remain just as relevant today.

I believe that students should study whatever subjects they find most fascinating. Take courses that stretch your capacities and expand your horizons. Students interested in philosophy can rest assured that the skills one develops in philosophy, such as rigorous analysis, critical thinking and communication skills, are valuable in any career.

EDUCATION
Ph.D., Philosophy, 2004, Emory University 
M.A., Philosophy, 2002, Emory University 
B.A., Philosophy and Greek Studies, 1998, Bucknell University

--cum laude
--Departmental Honors in Philosophy

AREAS OF SPECIALIZATION 

Ancient Greek Philosophy, Feminist Philosophy, Cross-Cultural Education

AREAS OF COMPETENCE

Ethical Theory, History of Philosophy, Philosophy of Race

ACADEMIC EMPLOYMENT
2012-               Chair, Department of Philosophy, Susquehanna University
2009-               Associate Professor of Philosophy, Susquehanna University
2003-2009       Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Susquehanna University

PUBLICATIONS

BOOK

Plato on Philosophy and the Physical (manuscript nearly complete)

ARTICLES

"Plato on Food and Necessary and Unnecessary Appetites in the Republic," Odysseys of Plates and Palates: Food, Society, and Sociality, eds. Simeon S. Magliveras and Catherine Gallin. Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press (2015), 23-30.     

"To 'Graze Freely in the Pastures of Philosophy': The Political Motives and Pedagogical Methods of Socrates and the Sophists," Polis 27; 1 (2010): 80-110.  

"Plato's Science of Living Well," Matter and Form: From Natural Science to Political Philosophy, ed. Ann Ward. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books/Rowman and Littlefield (2009), 35-44. Also available in Proceedings of the International Society for the Study of European Ideas (CD-ROM, 2008).  

"Seducing Socrates and Resolving Plato's Separate Soul Paradox," Socrates: Reason or Unreason as the Foundation of European Identity, ed. Ann Ward. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Press (2007), 30-44.  

"Plato on Hypothesis, Proportion, and the Education of Philosophers," Auslegung 29; 1 (2007): 45-69.   "The Pre-Critical Roots of Kant's Compatibilism," Philosophy and Theology 19; 1 (2007): 197-213.  

"Plato on Philosophy and the Physical in the Phaedo and Symposium," The European Mind: Narrative and Identity, vol. 1, ed. Henry Frendo, Malta: University of Malta Press (2010): 483-488.  Also available in Proceedings of the International Society for the Study of European Ideas (CD-ROM, 2006).    

"Determined but Free: Aquinas's Compatibilist Theory of Freedom," Philosophy and Theology 16; 1 (2004): 25-44.  

"Care of the Soul: Protagoras' Antilogic, Virtue, and Rhetoric," Eidos 11 (1998): 68-84.

BOOK REVIEWS

Roslyn Weiss, Philosophers in the Republic: Plato's Two Paradigms (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2012). Philosophy in Review 35; 1 (2015): 50-52.  

J. Angelo Corlett, Interpreting Plato's Dialogues (Las Vegas: Parmenides Publishing, 2005). Journal of the History of Philosophy 45; 3 (2007): 486-7.

ACADEMIC AWARDS

Susquehanna University Award for Distinguished Teaching, 2008

Omicron Delta Kappa (leadership honor society) Faculty Member of the Year Award, Susquehanna University, 2007

Graduate Student Prize, American Philosophical Association (APA)-Pacific Division, 2001

W. Preston Warren Prize for Excellence in the Study of Philosophy, Bucknell University, 1998

Herbert Goodman Barrows Prize for Excellence in the Study of Greek Language and Literature, Bucknell University, 1998

GRANTS AND FELLOWSHIPS

University Research Grant, Faculty Research and Development Committee, Susquehanna University, 2006-2007

National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)/Arthur Blank Foundation Research Grant, 2003

American Philosophical Association (APA) Fellowship for the American Association of Philosophy Teachers (AAPT) Teaching Seminar for Advanced Graduate Students, 2002

Research Fellowship from the Program for Undergraduate Research, Bucknell University, 1997

American Association of University Women (AAUW) Scholarship, 1994-1995

CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS

 "The Peculiar Nature of Philosophers in Plato's Republic"

--Atelier International de la Société D'Etudes Platoniciennes, Université Paris Ouest Nanterre-La Défense, France, June 2015
--International Conference on Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, 33rd Annual Meeting of the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy (SAGP), October 2015  

 "Real Philosophers Do Not Disdain Human Affairs"

--International Conference on Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, 32nd Annual Meeting of the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy (SAGP), October 2014  

"Plato on Food and Necessary and Unnecessary Appetites in the Republic"

--"Making Sense of Food II" Conference organized by Interdisciplinary.Net in Athens, Greece, November 2013  

"Exercising One's Whole Soul in the First City of Plato's Republic"

--International Conference on Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, 30th Annual Meeting of the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy (SAGP), October 2012  

"Nectar and Ambrosia for Plato's Philosophers"

--West Coast Plato Workshop, University of California, San Diego, May 2010
--International Conference on Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, 28th Annual Meeting of the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy (SAGP), October 2010  

"Honest Cakes: Plato on Health, Justice, and Peace"

--Northeastern Political Science Association, Ancient and Medieval Political Philosophy Panel, November 2008
--International Conference on Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, 26th Annual Meeting of the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy (SAGP), October 2008          

"Plato's Science of Living Well"

--International Society for the Study of European Ideas (ISSEI), Workshop on "Matter and Form: From Natural Science to Political Philosophy," University of Helsinki, July 2008  

"Plato's Use of Soul-Body Analogies: Differing Prescriptions for Psychic Health"

--Northeastern Political Science Association, Ancient and Medieval Political Philosophy Panel, November 2007
--International Conference on Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, 25th Annual Meeting of the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy (SAGP), October 2007  

"Philosophy as Training for Death in Plato's Phaedo"

--Northeastern Political Science Association, Ancient and Medieval Political Philosophy Panel, November 2006
--International Conference on Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, 24th Annual Meeting of the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy (SAGP), October 2006  

"Seducing Socrates: Plato on Philosophy and the Physical"

--International Society for the Study of European Ideas (ISSEI), Workshop on "Socrates: Reason or Unreason as the Foundation of European Identity?" University of Malta, July 2006  

"Reconsidering Socratic Intellectualism"

--International Conference on Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, 23rd Annual Meeting of the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy (SAGP), October 2005  

"A Decade of Mathematics?: A Look at Mathematical Method and the Hierarchy of Platonic Forms"

--Society for the Contemporary Assessment of Platonism, APA-Pacific Division, March 2004
--Eastern Pennsylvania Philosophical Association, November 2003  

"Aquinas and the Stoics on Freedom of the Divine Will"

--American Philosophical Association (APA)-Pacific Division, March 2001
--University of Tennessee--Knoxville Graduate Student Conference, March 2000

COLLOQUIA

"Philosophy as Erotic Ascent in Plato's Symposium and Phaedrus"

--Faculty Colloquium, Department of Philosophy and Religion, Skidmore College, February 2012  

"Plato on Philosophy and the Physical"

--Faculty Colloquium, Susquehanna University, March 2007  

"What Socrates Learned from Loving a Boy: The Educational Function of Erotic Love in Plato"

--Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) Annual Colloquium, Susquehanna University, April 2006  

"Holistic Medicine and Soul-Body Dualism in Plato"

--Medical Humanities Initiative Series, Susquehanna University, September 2005  

"Plato on Philosophy and the Physical in the Phaedo and Symposium"

--Faculty Colloquium, Department of Philosophy, Lehigh University, February 2005  

"Aquinas and the Stoics on Freedom of the Divine Will"

--Philosophy Forum, Emory University, March 2001  

"Philosophy as the Educational Technê in Plato's Gorgias"

--Philosophy Forum, Emory University, February 1999  

"The Status of Morality in Kant's Three Critiques"

--Undergraduate Research Program Colloquium, Bucknell University, September 1997

COURSES REGULARLY TAUGHT

PHIL105: Philosophy of Love and Desire
PHIL150: Everyday Ethics
PHIL212: Feminist Philosophy
PHIL222: Advanced Ethical Theory
PHIL241: Ancient Philosophy
PHIL255: Philosophy and the City: Plato's Republic & HBO's The Wire
PHIL301: Plato Seminar
PRDV104: Perspectives
WMST100: Introduction to Women's Studies Global Opportunities (GO): Greek Culture, Ancient and Modern Supervision of Independent Work

SELECTED PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

The Aspen Institute at Wye River, Faculty Seminar on "Citizenship and the American Polity," July 21-27, 2007

National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)/Arthur Blank Seminar on Teaching, Spring 2003

American Philosophical Association (APA)/Association of American Philosophy Teachers (AAPT) Pedagogy Seminar for Advanced Graduate Students, August 2002

Certificate in Latin from the Summer Language Institute, University of Virginia, 2000

Certificate in German from Language Institute, CUNY Graduate School, 1999

DEPARTMENTAL/UNIVERSITY SERVICE

Selected Committees and Programs

Member, Susquehanna University Board of Trustees, 2015-present

Trained Advocate, Sexual Assault Student Support Advocate Program, 2005-present

Member, Women's Studies Program Steering Committee, 2003-present

Faculty Personnel Committee, 2009-2012 (Acting Chair, Fall 2011)

Chair, Philosophy Search Committee, Fall 2012

President's Strategic Planning Advisory Group, 2008-2010

Chair, Philosophy Search Committee, Fall 2010

Campus Coordinator of Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellows Program, 2006-2009

Keynote Speaker, Family Weekend Scholars Dinner, October 31, 2008

Faculty Affairs Committee, 2004-2007

Curriculum Committee Summer Working Group (created Susquehanna's Central Curriculum), 2006

Selected Extracurricular University Service

Faculty Advisor, Black Student Union (BSU), 2014-present

Cluster Facilitator, Leadershape Institute, January 4-10, 2015

Keynote Speaker on Poverty and Homelessness:

--Cardboard City fundraising event for SPLASH, September 12, 2014
--SPLASH program for first-year students, 2013-present

Presenter, "Food and Social Justice," Martin Luther King Advocacy Awareness Day, January 21, 2012

SU CASA (Susquehanna University Central America Service Adventure) service-learning trip to Costa Rica and Nicaragua, December 29, 2007-January 12, 2008 & December 30, 2006-January 13, 2007

Panelist, The Brotherhood's Annual Race Relations Forum, November 26, 2007

Performer, "The Vagina Monologues," February 24-26, 2005

Co-Director, SPLASH (a pre-orientation program for first-year students focused on poverty and homelessness), July 11-18, 2005

SERVICE TO THE PROFESSION

Reviewer for Ancient Philosophy

SERVICE TO THE COMMUNITY

Board of Directors, Susquehanna Valley Women in Transition (SVWIT), 2004-2007

LANGUAGES

Reading knowledge of Ancient Greek, Latin, German
Some proficiency in Modern Greek, Spanish

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

American Philosophical Association (APA)
Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy (SAGP)
American Association of University Professors (AAUP)

REFERENCES

Richard Patterson, Professor of Philosophy, Emory University, 404.727.0106 (rpatt01@emory.edu)

Jeff Turner, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Bucknell University, 570.577.3509 (turner@bucknell.edu)

Roslyn Weiss, Clara H. Stewardson Professor of Philosophy, Lehigh University, 610.758.5325 (rw03@lehigh.edu)

Warren Funk, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, Susquehanna University, 570.768.0466 (wfunk@ptd.net)

Courses taught:

  • OFFP-GOLONG Preparation for GO Long
  • OFFP-GRKCLT Greek Culture: Ancient and Modern
  • OFFP-GYOW Prep for GYOW Prog.
  • OFFR-310 Global Citizenship
  • OFFR-GRKCLT Greek Culture: Ancient and Modern
  • OFFS-GRKCLT Greek Culture: Ancient and Modern
  • PHIL-150 Everyday Ethics
  • PHIL-150 Race, Class, and Ethics
  • PHIL-212 Feminist Philosophy
  • PHIL-241 Ancient Philosophy
  • PHIL-255 The Republic & HBO's The Wire
  • PHIL-301 Plato Seminar
  • PHIL-400 Independent Study
  • PHIL-500 Directed Reading and Research
  • PRDV-104 Perspectives
  • WMST-200 Feminist Philosophy
  • WMST-500 Women's Studies Research
  • WMST-505 Independent Study