Michael Tooley

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Michael Tooley
Alma materPrinceton University
EraContemporary philosophy
RegionWestern philosophy
SchoolAnalytic philosophy
Main interests
metaphysics, applied ethics, philosophy of science, philosophy of religion

Michael Tooley (born 1941) is an American philosopher, now emeritus at the University of Colorado, Boulder, best known for his contributions to metaphysics.

Education and career[edit]

He has a BA from the University of Toronto and earned his Ph.D. in philosophy at Princeton University in 1968.[1] He taught at Stanford University and the Australian National University and since 1992 at the University of Colorado Boulder.[2]

Philosophical work[edit]

Tooley has worked on philosophy of science, philosophy of religion, causality and metaphysical naturalism,[3] and has debated the existence of God with William Lane Craig.[4][5] His early paper "Abortion and Infanticide," arguing that there is no moral difference between them and that both are permissible, has been controversial.[6][7][8]

See also[edit]


  • The Problem of Evil (Elements in the Philosophy of Religion) (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019)
  • Abortion – Three Perspectives (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009)
  • Knowledge of God (with Alvin Plantinga, Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2008)
  • Metaphysics (New York: Garland Publishing, 1999). In five volumes: Volume 1 - Laws of Nature, Causation, and Supervenience; Volume 2 - The Nature of Time; Volume 3 - Properties; Volume 4 - Particulars, Actuality, and Identity; Volume 5 - Necessity and Possibility.
  • Time, Tense, and Causation (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997)
  • Causation (Oxford: Oxford University Press, Readings in Philosophy Series, 1993). Co-edited with Ernest Sosa.
  • Causation: A Realist Approach (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1987)
  • Abortion and Infanticide (Oxford, 1985 [1983])


  1. ^ "Exercise1.html". spot.colorado.edu. Archived from the original on 2000-09-20.
  2. ^ About Tooley Archived 2013-11-23 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Tooley, Michael (1977). "The Nature of Laws". Canadian Journal of Philosophy, 7 (4): 667–698.
  4. ^ Transcript of Debate With Craig
  5. ^ Video of Debate With Craig
  6. ^ Tooley, M. "Abortion and Infanticide". Philosophy and Public Affairs 2:1 (Autumn 1972): 37-65, at 52-53.
  7. ^ Tooley, M. 1984. "In Defense of Abortion and Infanticide". In Pojman and Beckwith 1998: 209-233.
  8. ^ Don Marquis and Michael Tooley on abortion and personhood

External links[edit]