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Thomas Pink

Professor Thomas Pink

Photograph of Thomas PinkProfessor of Philosophy

Tel +44 (0)20 7848 2594
Address Room 501, Philosophy Building
King's College London
London, WC2R 2LS




Professor Thomas Pink read history and philosophy at Cambridge, where he also received his PhD. After working for four years in London and New York for a City merchant bank, he returned to philosophy in 1990 as a Research Fellow of Churchill College, Cambridge. He then lectured at Sheffield University prior to moving to King's in 1996.

Research interests and PhD supervision
  • Philosophy of mind
  • Ethics
  • Political philosophy
  • Rational choice theory
  • Medieval and early modern philosophy

Professor Pink’s main interests are in ethics, philosophy of mind and action, philosophy of law and in medieval and early modern philosophy.

He is currently writing on the free will problem - his Free Will: A Very Short Introduction is published by Oxford University Press in June 2004.

He is also working on the nature of moral normativity. Forthcoming on this topic, also from Oxford University Press, is his two volume The Ethics of Action. The first volume, Action and Self-Determination, deals with the nature of action and its possible ethical significance. This volume contains a new theory of freedom of action. The second volume, Action and Normativity, deals with various possible kinds of moral normativity, and examines whether moral normativity has anything to do with reason. At the heart of this second volume is a new theory of moral obligation and, based on that, a new theory of the rationality of moral motivation and action.

A general overview of the theory of obligation is to be found in Pink’s Royal Institute lecture of December 2002, ‘Moral obligation’ which is published in Modern Moral Philosophy ed. Anthony O’Hear (Cambridge University Press 2004). He is an editor of London Studies in the History of Philosophy, and is also editing The Questions Concerning Liberty, Necessity and Chance, containing the Hobbes-Bramhall controversy on free will, for the Clarendon Edition of the works of Hobbes.

Professor Pink welcomes enquires from prospective students seeking to work with him on topics connected to his research interests.

For more details, please see his full research profile.

Selected publications
  • The Questions Concerning Liberty, Necessity and Chance by Thomas Hobbes and John Bramhall – edited for the Clarendon Edition of the works of Thomas Hobbes, Oxford University Press, forthcoming.
  • The Ethics of Action, Oxford University Press forthcoming
    Volume 1 Action and Self-Determination
    Volume 2 Action and Normativity
  • The Will and Human Action: from Antiquity to the Present Day, edited with M. W. F. Stone, Routledge 2004
  • Thomas Pink (2009)  'PROMISING AND OBLIGATION' Philosophical Perspectives, 23 (1), pp. 389-420.
    [Article in print Journal]
For a complete list of publications, please see Tom's full research profile.

Professor Pink has previously taught on the following modules
Undergraduate modules:

  • 5AANA005 Ethics II: History of Ethical Philosophy
Expertise and public engagement



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