Alexus McLeod

New Core Faculty Alexus McLeodAssociate Professor of Philosophy and Asian/Asian American Studies

Manchester Hall, Room 233
Phone: (860) 486-4416 (main office Philosophy Department)

Please join us in Congratulating Prof. McLeod on receiving tenure and promotion to Associate Professor of Philosophy!

Areas of Specialization:  Early Chinese Philosophy, Comparative Philosophy

Areas of Competence:  Indian Philosophy, Mesoamerican (Maya) Philosophy, Philosophy of Language, Metaphysics, Ethics, History and Philosophy of Science


I received my Ph.D. in Philosophy at UConn in 2009, and after this spent five years as Assistant Professor in Philosophy at the University of Dayton, and two years as Assistant Professor in Philosophy at Colorado State University, before returning to UConn to join the faculty in Philosophy and Asian and Asian American Studies.

My research is primarily in the areas of Early Chinese Philosophy and Comparative Philosophy, within which I have interests across the spectrum of philosophical topics. My most recent work focuses on the philosophical thought of the Western and Eastern Han periods in China (206 BCE-220 CE), particularly surrounding issues in the philosophy of language and metaphysics. I also work on ethical thought in early Confucianism (Pre-Han), and have published on Mesoamerican (Maya) Philosophy, Indian Philosophy (especially early Buddhism, Advaita Vedanta, and Mimamsa), and the Philosophy of Science (astronomy).

My most recent book is a monograph forthcoming with Lexington Books: Philosophy of the Ancient Maya: Lords of Time, a comparative work on Pre-Columbian Maya Philosophy and Early Chinese Philosophy. My other books include: another monograph, Theories of Truth in Chinese Philosophy: A Comparative Approach (Rowman and Littlefield International, 2015), on the concept of truth in early Chinese thought from the Analects through the philosophers of the Eastern Han period; an introductory textbook, Understanding Asian Philosophy: Ethics in the Analects, Zhuangzi, Dhammapada, and Bhagavad Gita (Bloomsbury, 2014), in which I focus on self-cultivation, right action, and thriving in the Chinese and Indian philosophical traditions; and Astronomy in the Ancient World: Early and Modern Views of Celestial Events (Springer, 2016), in which I discuss philosophical presuppositions of astronomical systems in the pre-modern world in China, India, the Americas, and Europe.

I am currently in the process of finishing two books, a monograph on the Eastern Han Dynasty Philosopher Wang Chong, and a monograph based roughly on my dissertation, on the issues of individual and communal agency and moral responsibility in early Confucianism and Daoism. I am also editor of the forthcoming volume Bloomsbury Research Handbook in Early Chinese Ethics and Political Philosophy (Bloomsbury, forthcoming 2017). In addition, I am working with Joshua Brown (University of Dayton) on a monograph on the issue of transcendence and naturalism in early Chinese thought.

I have published numerous articles in journals in my area, including Philosophy East and West, Dao: A Journal of Chinese Philosophy, Journal of Chinese Philosophy, Comparative Philosophy, International Communication of Chinese Culture, and a number of other journals and books.

I am the series editor of the Critical Inquiries in Comparative Philosophy book series (Rowman and Littlefield International), which publishes volumes in Chinese and Indian Philosophy as well as Comparative Philosophy more generally. I am also on the organizing committee of the Midwest Conference on Chinese Thought, which I hosted in Dayton in 2013.