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Ken Parsons

Ken Parsons

Ken Parsons

Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Parsons is an Associate Professor of Philosophy and the Director for the Center for Global Studies & Social Justice. He joined the department in August 2008 from his previous teaching positions at Central Michigan University (2007-08) and SUNY-Monroe Community College in Rochester, NY (2005-07). His research currently focuses on the philosophical problems of how we represent phenomena of violence and how we exercise moral judgments about it, in particular as these problems relate to mass violence & genocide. In this arena, the questions are:

  • What is it that is under consideration for reflection when one “thinks clearly about violence”?
  • How are philosophers to represent and reflect upon phenomena that in its most concrete manifestation is an experience of harm and suffering?
  • How does one frame the historical realities of violence in ways which make violence salient for those it is being represented for?

He has presented his research in South Korea, Hungary, Canada and Italy, most recently with the Society for European Philosophy/Forum for European Philosophy. Previously he taught courses within the areas of Value Theory (Social-Political Philosophy, Ethics), Philosophy of Religion, Philosophy of Technology and Critical Reasoning. He continues to co-teach interdisciplinary courses which integrate Philosophy and other academic perspectives/methodologies (Music, Media & Film Studies, and Social Work). This Fall semester he is traveling again with students and Dr. Amity Bryson (Music) to Berlin, Germany, as part of a course on Music & Politics. In the Spring 2016 semester he will travel to Guatemala again with Professor Nicole Esquibel (Media & Film Studies) as part of a course on mass violence and genocide. Finally, as part of a 3-year project funded by the Hilton Foundation to the Sisters of St. Joseph, Dr. Parsons will be working with Dr. Coburn on designing, refining, and evaluating a Cultural Diversity & Conflict Management curriculum, along with many Sisters of St. Joseph from around the world. The two will travel to Le Puy, France, in late October and early November of 2015.

On Teaching

To challenge-forth concern for the world


Ph.D., Michigan State University
M.A., Michigan State University
B.A., Taylor University

Research and Teaching Interests

Philosophies of Violence & Power
Philosophy of Technology
Contemporary European Philosophy
Social & Political Philosophy

Select Publication

Structural Violence & Power

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Class of 2023

student stacking boxes at Harvesters food bank

Each year Avila students volunteer more than 140,000 hours through community service and study programs beginning with our annual day at Harvesters - The Community Food Network.

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University Singers Tour France

Choir tour send off

Choir performing inside Visitation Church

A recap of the Avila University Singers tour of Normandy and Le Puy, France

Pictures, video, and a post-tour reflection >>

Before Hours: Info. Session for Adult Undergraduate and Graduate Programs


Join us for coffee & snacks while talking with our various program representatives about how you can work full time and go to school for your undergraduate or graduate degree.
Aug. 27 between 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m.


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