Dr Paul Giladi
- Department of Religions and Philosophies Departmental Recruitment, Admissions and Marketing Convenor Department of Religions and Philosophies Year 1 Academic Advisor: BA World Philosophies programmes Centre for Global and Comparative Philosophies Member Centre for Gender Studies Member Centre for Comparative Political Thought Member Feminist Centre for Racial Justice Member
Senior Fellow, Advance HE (2023)
PGCLTHE (Distinction, 2022)
PhD in Philosophy (2013, University of Sheffield)
MPhil.Stud in Philosophy (2011, University of London – King’s College London)
BA (Hons) Philosophy (2008, University of London – King’s College London)
- SOAS Main Building
- Email address
- Support hours
- (Term 1): Mondays from 4:00pm-5:00pm; Tuesdays 10:00am-11:00am. MS Teams meetings by request.
Dr. Paul Giladi started at SOAS on 4 September 2023.
Previously, he was at Manchester Met from 1 June 2018 until 1 September 2023, where he was the Director of Undergraduate Studies for Philosophy, the Departmental lead for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusivity (EDI), and the convenor of the Critical Pedagogy Group. Paul has published numerous articles and book chapters on German Idealism, American Pragmatism, philosophical naturalism, critical social theory, critical social epistemology, and critical social ontology.
To date, he has published three edited collections with Routledge. Paul co-founded in November 2021 the ‘Naturalism, Modernity, Civilization, and International Research Network’ – jointly homed in SOAS and at Padova University –, which he continues to co-direct.
Areas of Specialisation:
- Post-Kantian Philosophy (particularly Fichte and Hegel)
- Critical Social Theories (particularly the Frankfurt School and decoloniality)
- Critical Social Epistemologies
Areas of Competence:
- Critical Philosophy of Race
- Gender Studies
- Philosophy of Education
- Philosophy of the City
- Philosophy of Language
- Philosophy of Mind
- Sexuality Studies
Paul’s approach to philosophy is unique: he combines perspectives from Hegel, pragmatism, critical social theories, intersectional feminism, and contemporary Anglo-American philosophy. His research crosses multiple philosophical traditions and conceptual schemes that have remained distinct.
One of the motivations in Paul’s research, which forms a positive feedback loop with his critical and relational pedagogic praxis, is to demonstrate how a heterogeneous conceptual framework, particularly one oriented to maximal inclusiveness of those voices rendered subaltern, can yield a more penetrative and more robust analysis of key questions in social philosophy, metaphysics, and philosophy of mind.
I teach because I view philosophy as a life-affirming, social, progressively transformative, and emancipatory subject. Philosophy is also really fun! I am hugely motivated to pass on my passion for this wonderful discipline to my students, so they can (i) feel very much at home in research environments, (ii) fully realise their own capabilities as critical, rigorous agents, (iii) sensitively make sense of reality through new and intellectually penetrative vocabularies, (iv) actively combat all forms of oppression, and (v) bring about progressive change in their personal and professional lives.
I have developed an intense but friendly critical pedagogical approach which encourages students, especially those from a range of minoritised backgrounds, to feel part of a community of researchers and very much at home in university learning environments. I view students as co-participants in inquiry, rather than as passive learners. Using my own take on research-led teaching, I push my students hard with transformational learning techniques, not only to ensure they are as active and engaged as possible, but also to enable them to have an excellent critical grasp of the philosophical issues in play. Such a pedagogical approach helps students become increasingly confident (not arrogant!), realise their potential, and enter the world of work with an array of attractive employability skills.
In terms of students’ formative work, which is just as important as their summative assessments, I typically ask my students to maintain a reflective learning diary over the course of the modules they take under my direction. Reflective learning diaries are a very helpful metacognitive pedagogical resource for their intellectual development as thinkers.
True to my Deweyan commitments, I also always encourage students to experiment with their ideas. I do this partly by getting students to imagine and then act out a dialectical to-and-fro exchange between themselves and the relevant philosopher(s) in question. Such exercises encourage students to embrace being challenged, and to never be afraid of asking questions.
Central to my own critical pedagogical practice is my commitment to self-critically and actively contributing to diversity, equity, and inclusivity:
- I take ‘diversity’ to involve the full range of personal and group experiences arising from differences of race, ethnicity, gender, age, religious orientation, geographic region, socioeconomic status, disability, and sexual orientation.
- I take ‘equity’ to involve, unlike the liberal notion of equality, fair treatment on grounds of difference. Equity is concerned with recognising structures of oppression and marginalisation, such as sexism, ableism, classism, transphobia, homophobia, racism, religious prejudice, as symbolic and material means of ensuring those subject to those structures cannot flourish in wider society.
- I take ‘inclusion’ to involve the active political effort to ensuring that all individuals are treated with dignity, respect, and accorded due recognition.
I understand the aim of advancing diversity, equity and inclusion, not in terms of ‘making room’ for these values in existing environments, but rather in terms of radically transforming existing environments in which diversity, equity and inclusion are either met with contempt or completely ignored. To my mind, the aim is not the liberal endeavour of ‘accommodating’ these progressive values or creating ‘elbow room’ for them. Rather, the aim is radical in the manner of Paolo Freire and bell hooks: the creation and sustaining of new institutions that are completely structured by these progressive values.
Advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion is an imperative to enable more democratic forms of association. It provides the indispensable symbolic and material space for bringing about a more caring, more humane, and better world.
- Arabic (intermediate)
- English (native)
- French (fluent)
- German (reading)
- Hebrew (intermediate)
- Spanish (intermediate)
Consultancy and Advisory Roles
- Online Learning
- Challenges to Higher Education
Prizes and Awards
- Shortlisted for ‘Most Innovative Teacher of the Year’, 2023 Times Higher Education Awards.
- Commendation (€500 award) for ‘The Agent in Pain: Alienation and Discursive Abuse’, The 2019 Robert Papazian Essay Prize.
- University Teaching and Learning Award in 17/18 (University College Dublin).