Heimir Geirsson

Professor and Department Chair


Dept:Philosophy & Religious Studies
Office:453 Catt
2224 Osborn Dr.
Ames IA


My main research focus is on philosophy of language, and then especially the reference and meaning of names. I agree with Frege that “equality gives rise to challenging questions which are not altogether easy to answer.” I disagree with him on the solutions, supporting Millianism instead. My research extends to philosophy of mind, metaphysics, epistemology, meta-ethics, and philosophy of religion. See my CV for more.

Research Areas

Philosophy of Language; Philosophy of Mind; Epistemology; Metaphysics


PhD University of Nebraska-Lincoln
MA University of Nebraska-Lincoln
BA University of Iceland
BEd Icelandic Teachers’ College

Courses Taught

Philosophy of Religion
Metaphysics: God, Minds, and Matter

Selected Publications

Philosophy of Language and Webs of Information. Routledge, 2013. Reviewed in Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, July 2013.

“Moral Twin Earth, Intuitions, and Kind Names.” Croatian Journal of Philosophy 14 (2014): 91-110.

“Conceivability and Coherence: A Skeptical View of Zombies.” Erkenntnis 79 (2014): 211-225.

“What God Could Have Made.” Southern Journal of Philosophy, 43 (2005): 355-376. (with Michael Losonsky)

“Moral Twin-Earth and Semantic Moral Realism.” Erkenntnis 62 (2005): 253-278.

“Conceivability and Defeasible Modal Justification.” Philosophical Studies 125 (2005): 279-304.

Selected Presentations

“Empty Names and Error Theory.” Philang Conference, Lodz, Poland, 2015.

“In The Know and Still Resisting Substitutions.” Names, Demonstratives and Expressives, conference organized by University of Milan, Gargnano, Italy, 2014.

“Moral Twin-Earth, Reference and Disagreements.” World Congress of Philosophy, Athens, Greece, 2013.

“In The Know and Still Resisting Substitutions.” ENFA5 (The fifth meeting of the Portuguese Society of Analytic Philosophy), Braga, Portugal, 2012.

“A Tale of Two Marys.” The Seventh Conference of the Spanish Society of Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science, Santiago de Compostela, Spain, 2012.

Comments on “Vagueness, Indeterminacy, and Logic.” APA Central Division Meeting, Minneapolis, 2011.

“Multiple Realizability.” Southwest Philosophical Society, Memphis, TN, 2010.

“Conceivability and Justification: A Look at Zombies.” SIFA 9, Ontology, Mind and Language, Padua, Italy, 2010.

Professional Activity

The American Philosophical Association Committee on Defense of Professional Rights of Philosophers, 2015-present.
Vice President, ISU AAUP Chapter, 2009-present.
Chair, ISU Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure, 2009-present.
Chair, Iowa Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure, 2004-present, member since 1993.