Lynn Joy

Professor of Philosophy Emerita 

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Mailing Address:
Department of Philosophy
University of Notre Dame
100 Malloy Hall
Notre Dame, IN 46556

Phone: (574) 631-7046

Office: 306 Malloy


A.B., Harvard University
A.M., Harvard University
Ph.D., Harvard University


Areas of Interest

Modern Philosophy, Ethics, Philosophy of Science



Recent Articles:

  • "The Ineliminability of Dispositions in Hume's Rejection of Causal Powers," in John Greco and Ruth Groff (eds.), Powers and Capacities in Philosophy: The New Aristotelianism (Routledge, 2013)
  • "Dispositional Explanations: Boyle's Problem, Newton's Solution, Hume's Response," in Andrew Janiak and Eric Schliesser (eds.), Interpreting Newton: Critical Essays (Cambridge, 2012), pp. 322-343 
  • "Scientific Explanation from Formal Causes to Laws of Nature," The Cambridge History of Science, Vol. 3: Early Modern Science, ed. Katharine Park and Lorraine Daston, pp. 70-105 (2006)
  • "Did Natural Law and Equal Expectation Guarantee the Rationality of Belief?," The Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (1998)
  • "Necessity, Contingency, and the Natural in Modern Science," Studies in History and Philosophy of Science (1997)
  • "Newtonianism without God: Hume as a Philosophical Critic" (in progress)


  • Gassendi the Atomist: Advocate of History in an Age of Science (Cambridge, 1987/2002)
  • Dispositions and Intentionality in the Humean Tradition (in progress).  This book analyzes changing philosophical concepts of dispositions, focusing on key episodes in which both Hume's own and certain twentieth-century neo-Humeans' relational accounts of natural and moral dispositions have competed with rival causal power accounts of dispositions, including the causal power accounts of Boyle, Locke, and Newton, and those of contemporary theorists like Nancy Cartwright, Brian Ellis, and George Molnar.  This study also explains how Hume and the more recent Humeans have developed standpoints in the philosophy of mind and meta-ethics that depend on their distinctive treatments of the dispositional and intentional aspects of beliefs.