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Stacie Friend

Senior Lecturer in Philosophy


Stacie Friend lectures in Philosophy. She taught at Birkbeck from 2005-2007 and rejoined the department in 2014, having taught in between at Heythrop College, University of London. She was a British Academy/Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellow in 2013-14. She previously lectured at Washington & Jefferson College in Washington, Pennsylvania (2003-05) and at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, as a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow (2002-03). She is the Vice President of the British Society of Aesthetics and an organizer of the London Aesthetics Forum series of talks at the Institute of Philosophy.

Beginning in Autumn 2018, Dr Friend will be co-investigator on a three-year Leverhulme Trust research project on 'Learning from Fiction', with Professor Greg Currie (Philosophy, York) and Dr Heather Ferguson (Psychology, Kent).

Research papers may be found at

Hear a podcast of Dr Friend's talk for the Aristotelian Society, 'Fiction as a Genre', at

Hear a podcast of Dr Friend discussing Philosophy and Literature with Professors Gregory Currie (Nottingham) and Edward Harcourt (Keble College, Oxford) on the Philosophy Now radio show at

See a video of Dr Friend's comments at the 'Reference and the Elusive Self' workshop on John Perry's latest work in Donostia, Spain (2014) at

Research Activity

  • Dr Friend's research has focused primarily on issues at the intersection of aesthetics, mind and language, especially as these pertain to problems raised by our engagement with fictional narratives and fictional characters.
  • She has published on empty names, the nature of fiction, the metaphysics of fictional characters, emotional responses to fiction and tragedy, and the cognitive values of fiction and literature.
  • She is currently engaged in a book project on the role of ordinary matters of fact in fiction. Other projects include an analysis of the role of fiction and imagination in scientific modelling.


  • ‘Notions of Nothing’, in Empty Representations: Reference and Non-Existence, edited by Manuel García-Carpintero and Genoveva Martí, Oxford University Press (2014)
  • ‘Believing in Stories’, in Aesthetics and the Sciences of Mind, edited by Gregory Currie, Matthew Kieran, Aaron Meskin, and Jon Robson. Oxford University Press (2014)
  • ‘Fiction as a Genre’, Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 112 (2012): 179-209
  • ‘Fictive Utterance and Imagining II’, Aristotelian Society, Supplementary Volume 85 (2011): 163-80
  • ‘The Great Beetle Debate: A Study in Imagining with Names’, Philosophical Studies 153 (2011): 183-211
  • ‘Getting Carried Away’, Midwest Studies in Philosophy, Vol. XXXIV: Film and the Emotions, edited by Peter French and Howard Wettstein. Wiley-Blackwell (2010): 77-105

Research Supervision

  • Aesthetics, language, and mind, especially (but not exclusively) where these related to fiction, literature, film, reference/intentionality, and non-existence
  • Some topics that students are researching include cognitive approaches to aesthetic appreciation and emotional warrant in aesthetic contexts


Please contact me by email to arrange a suitable time.