Margaret Gilbert

Picture of Margaret Gilbert
Abraham I. Melden Chair in Moral Philosophy and Distinguished Professor, Philosophy
School of Humanities
Ph.D., Oxford University, 1978, Philosophy
B.Phil., Oxford University, 1967, Philosophy
B.A., Cambridge University, 1965, Philosophy
University of California, Irvine
94 Humanities Instructional Building
Mail Code: 4555
Irvine, CA 92697
Research Interests
Social phenomena such as acting together, collective beliefs, social conventions, agreements and promises, and related areas of moral and political philosophy, philosophy of law, epistemology and game theory.
Academic Distinctions
--Elected Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences
Research Abstract
My research has focused on social relations in the human world viewed from the perspective of the participants. I have argued that in many contexts people understand themselves to be jointly committed with others in particular ways. A joint commitment binds people together as one, and grounds rights and obligations in the participants such that they are in a position to demand of conformity of one another and rebuke one another for non-conformity. In addition to offering a new perspective on longstanding philosophical questions such as the nature of agreements and promises, and the grounds of rights, these ideas have been found fruitful by researchers in a variety of fields outside philosophy including the history of science, social and developmental psychology, cultural anthropology, and robotics.
Awards and Honors
--2019 Lebowitz Prize of the American Philosophical Association and Phi Beta Kappa for Philosophical Achievement and Contribution
---2022 Dewey Lecturer, American Philosophical Association, Pacific Division
---2022-3 Vice-President, American Philosophical Association, [Pacific Division
---2023-4 President of the American Philosophical Association, Pacific Division

Short Biography
Prior to coming to UCI I taught at the University of Manchester, and the University of Connecticut, and held visiting research and teaching positions at Oxford University, the Institute for Advanced Study, and Princeton University, among others.
BOOKS [sole author]

1. On Social Facts (1989) Routledge: New York (in the series International Library of Philosophy) (hardback); Princeton University Press: Princeton, 1992 (hardback and paperback).

2. Living Together: Rationality, Sociality, and Obligation (1996) Rowman and Littlefield, Lanham, MD (hardback and paperback).

3. Sociality and Responsibility: New Essays in Plural Subject Theory (2000) Rowman and Littlefield, Lanham, MD (hardback and paperback).

4. Marcher Ensemble: Essais sur les Fondements des Phenomenes Collectifs (in French) (2003), Presses Universitaires de France: Paris, France (paperback).

5. A Theory of Political Obligation: Membership, Commitment, and the Bonds of Society (2006), Oxford University Press: Oxford (hardback); (2008) paperback, with some revisions).

6. Joint Commitment: How We Make the Social World (2013), Oxford University Press: New York (hardback); (2015) paperback.

7. Il Noi Collettivo: Impegno Coniunto e Mondo Sociale (in Italian) (2015) Raffaele-Cortina (paperback).
8. Rights and Demands: A Foundational Inquiry (2018). Oxford University Press: Oxford.
9. Life in Groups: How We Think, Feel, and Act Together (2023) Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Professional Societies
American Philosophical Assciation---life member
Other Experience
h-index 41 i10 index 73 [January 2024]

Research Centers
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