Thomas Wartenberg

Thomas E. Wartenberg is professor of philosophy at Mount Holyoke College.  His central interest in the philosophy of film focuses on how films do philosophy.  He has written two monographs on this topic: »Thinking on Screen:  Film as Philosophy« (Routledge, 2007) and »Unlikely Couples: Movie Romance and Social Criticism« (Westview, 1999).  He has also edited four anthologies on this subject: »Fight Club« (Philosophers on Film Book Series) (Routledge, 2012), »Thinking Through Cinema:  Film as Philosophy« (Blackwell, 2006) with Murray Smith, »The Philosophy of Film: Introductory Text and Readings« (Blackwell, 2005) with Angela Curran, and »Philosophy and Film« (Routledge, 1995) with Cynthia Freeland.  He has also published numerous articles and reviews on this subject, most recently “The Imposition Objection Reconsidered: A Response to Nunan” (»Film and Philosophy«, Vol. 19, 2015). He also works on issues in philosophical aesthetics, especially on the nature of art illustrations.  His book, »Mel Bochner: Illustrating Philosophy« (Mount Holyoke College Museum of Art, 2015), has recently appeared as well as an article, “Illustrating philosophy:  Mel Bochner’s Wittgenstein drawings” (»Word and Image«, Vol. 31 No. 3, 2015). 

He is also active in philosophy for children, having published two books: »Big Ideas for Little Kids:  Teaching Philosophy Through Children’s Literature« (Rowman and Littlefield, 2nd Edition 2014), and »A Sneetch is A Sneetch« and »Other Philosophical Discoveries: Finding Wisdom in Children’s Literature« (Wiley Blackwell, 2013).  The program that he founded, Teaching Children Philosophy (see the website,, was awarded the 2011 APA/PDC Prize for Excellence and Innovations in Philosophy Programs. He received the 2013 Merrit Prize for his contributions to the philosophy of education.  His course, Philosophy for Children, is the subject of a PBS documentary (accessible at which won a New England Emmy in 2015.  He is Vice President of the Philosophy Learners and Teaching Organization (PLATO). 

He has had two Senior Fulbright Fellowships, a National Endowment Fellowship for college teachers, and regularly teaches a National Endowment for the Humanities summer seminar for school teachers on existentialism.  He is on the editorial board of »Film and Philosophy« and is the Film Editor of »Philosophy Now«.