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Esme Murdock

Esme Murdock

Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow 2020-21

Office Phone: (814) 863-3531


  1. PhD, Philosophy, Michigan State University, 2016
  2. BA, Philosophy, Barnard College, Columbia University, 2010


Esme G. Murdock is an Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Associate Director of the Institute for Ethics and Public Affairs at San Diego State University. She works in the areas of environmental philosophy and environmental ethics and social and political philosophy with particular attention to environmental justice, philosophies of race and gender, and settler colonial theory. Her research explores the intersections of social/political relations and environmental health, integrity, and agency. Specifically, her work troubles the purported stability of dominant, largely euro-descendent, and settler-colonial philosophies through centering conceptions of land and relating to land found within African American, Afro-Diasporic, and Indigenous eco-philosophies.

Areas of Specialization

  • Social & Political Philosophy
  • Environmental Philosophy & Ethics

 Areas of Competence

  • Philosophy of Race & Gender
  • Philosophy of Science
  • Applied Ethics
  • African American Environmental Philosophies 

 Interdisciplinary Areas of Competence

  • Environmental Justice
  • Environmental Studies
  • Indigenous Environmental Ethics
  • Settler Colonial Theory  

Courses Taught

  • Introduction to Philosophy
  • Environmental Ethics
  • Philosophical Aspects of Feminisim
  • Humans, Environments, and Justice
  • Philosophy of Science
  • Foundations of the Nation State
  • Contemporary Philosophy (Phenomenology)
  • Reconciliation
  • Women and Philosophy


  • Journal Articles  

  1. Murdock, E.G. 2020. “This Land Was Made for…: (re)Appearing Black/Brown Female Corporeality, Life, and Death.” Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy 35 (1), 190-203.    
  2. Noll, S., and E.G. Murdock. 2020. “Whose Justice Is It Anyway? Mitigating the Tensions Between Food Security and Food Sovereignty.” Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 33, 1-14.  
  3. Mungwini, P., A. Creller, M. Monahan, and E.G. Murdock. 2019. “Why Epistemic Decolonization?”. Journal of World Philosophies 4 (2), 70-105. 
  4. Murdock, E.G. 2018. “Storied with Land: ‘Transitional Justice’ on Indigenous Lands.” Journal of Global Ethics 14 (2): 232-239.  
  5. Murdock, E.G. 2018. “Unsettling Reconciliation: Decolonial Methods for Transforming Social-Ecological Systems.” Environmental Values. 27 (5): 513-533.
  • Book Chapters
  1. Murdock, E.G. In Press. “Land(point) Epistemologies: Theorizing the Place of Epistemic Domination.” In Making the Case: Feminist and Critical Race Theorists Investigate Case Studies, edited by H. Grasswick and N. McHugh. Albany: SUNY Press. 
  2. Murdock, E.G. 2020. “A History of Environmental Justice: Foundations, Narratives, and Perspectives.” In Environmental Justice, edited by Brendan Coolsaet, 6–17. Abingdon, Oxon; New York, NY: Routledge. 
  3. Murdock, E.G. 2019. “Nature Where You’re Not: Rethinking Environmental Spaces and Racism.” The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of the City, 301-13. New York: Routledge. 
  4. Murdock, E.G., and Noll, S. 2015. “Beyond Access: Integrating Food Security and Food Sovereignty Models for Justice.” In Helena Rocklinsberg and Per Sandin (Eds), Know Your Food: Food Ethics and Innovation. Netherlands: Wageningen Academic Publishers. 
  • Book Reviews
    1. Murdock, E.G. 2020. “Nitinikiau Innusi: I Keep the Land Alive (Tshaukuesh Elizabeth Penashue).” Transmotion 6 (1): 303–6. 
    • Web-based and other publications
    1. Murdock, Esme G. 2020. “Troubling Ecological Citizenship: Expanding Our Minds and Hearts to See the More-Than-Human World as Our Relations.” Minding Nature 13 (2): 36–41.
    2. Murdock, E.G. 2019. “Mirroring Nature.” Earth Island Journal, 2019.
    3. Murdock, E.G. 2018. “Unsettling Reconciliation: Towards Decolonising Land and Rights Relations in Canada.” Whitehorsepress (blog). September 24, 2018.