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Tony Couture

Associate Professor
(902) 566-0989
Main Building, 514
BA (Windsor);
MA (Windsor);
PhD (McMaster)

I investigate and collect arguments about the history and future of Anarchism, life beyond the nation-state system, anti-government philosophies. I am working on a selection of William Godwin's writings that would be suitable for a course in Radical Philosophy, explain his important arguments with Thomas Malthus over population, his place in the history of understanding justice, and his role as one of the first communication theorists.

I am working on "Messenger of Justice to America: An Intellectual History of John Bordley Rawls." This project aims to explain the whole of Rawls's work and its unusual features:  his monomaniac pursuit of a theory of justice and revision of it throughout his career, his meta-philosophical principles which fragment philosophy into independent sub-disciplines with no foundations, the mystical influence of Walter Stace on his approach to historical philosophy, the Wittgensteinian influence of Norman Malcom and Cornell University on Rawls's writing and translation of the linguistic turn into analytical political philosophy, the meaning of World War II for Rawls as a participant and how it may have shaped his pursuit of justice,  and understanding of religion, racism, or slavery.
I am working on a historical textbook from Thomas More to Jurgen Habermas called "Philosophies of Communication," and a companion book which formulates a theory of the primacy of communicative practice in democracy called "The Freedom of Social Communication."
I have wide interests in ethical theory, theories of justice, philosophies of war and peace (violence and non-violence), and applied ethics such as environmental philosophy or Animal Ethics. I am an anarchistic existentialist with postmodern liberal tendencies.
  • "The State" in Philosophy of Law: An Encyclopedia, edited by Christopher Gray, 1999.
  • "Feminist Criticisms of Habermas's Ethics and Politics," in Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review, Vol. XXXIV, 1995, pp 259-79.
  • "Habermas, values, and the rational, internal structure of communication," The Journal of Value Inquiry, Vol. 27, 1993, pp 403-16.
  • "Bernstein, McCarthy, and the Evolution of Critical Theory," in Philosophy and Social Criticism, 1993, Vol. 19, #1, pp 59-75.
  • "Social Criticism After Rawls," in Philosophy and Social Criticism, 1992, Vol. 18, #1, pp 61-80.
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