N. G. Laskowski

I'm a tenure-track assistant professor in the Philosophy Department at California State University, Long Beach. Here's my philosophical lineage.

Before CSULB, I was a Wissenshaftlicher Mitarbeiter at Universität Duisburg-Essen in Germany. Before UDE, I earned my PhD in Philosophy at the University of Southern California. Before USC, I earned my BA in Philosophy and History at Rutgers University.

Email: ngl.philosophy[at]gmail[dot]com


My core work in ethical theory explores how to locate morality in the world as science and experience reveals it to be - naturalistic and secular. A central upshot of this work is that misgivings about locating morality in natural reality tend to rest on mistaken views about moral thought.

I also have a project in ethical theory exploring questions of "moral address", such as the normativity of requests and what it takes to be honest, especially with oneself.  

In social philosophy, I've worked on the metaphysics, ethics, language, and normativity of sexuality and gender. Very broadly speaking, I defend the view that your sexual orientation and gender are determined by features "in the head" but are no less normatively significant for it.

My research is also highly and unapologetically collaborative with ~40% of my published, forthcoming, or in progress work being co-authored.

Recent Writings (Selected)

Complete list at Google Scholar or PhilPeople.org

Categorical Phenomenalism about Sexual Orienation w/ T. R. Whitlow, Philosophy & Phenomenological Research (forthcoming)

Wronging by Requesting w/ Kenneth Silver, Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics Vol. 11 (2021)

The World is Not Enough w/ Nathan Robert Howard, Noûs (2021)

Resisting Reductive Realism, Oxford Studies in Metaethics Vol. 15 (2020)

Moral Constraints on Gender Concepts, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice  (2020)

The Sense of Incredibility in Ethics, Philosophical Studies (2019)

Epistemic Modesty in Ethics, Philosophical Studies (2018)

Conceptual Analysis in Metaethics w/ Stephen Finlay, The Routledge Handbook of Metaethics (2017) 


I'm a 1st-generation college graduate (my parents didn't attend college, theirs didn't...), committed to making non-traditional students feel like they belong in the classroom. 

One of the most rewarding parts of my work is research supervision. I am proud to say that all of my former MA mentees who aimed to continue studying philosophy at the PhD level are now doing so at Purdue University, University of Pennsylvania, University of Texas-Austin, and University of California-Riverside, respectively. 

Here's my current teaching assignment:

Spring 2023

On fellowship at the Center for AI Safety

Fall 2022

493/593: Social Ontology 

101: The Meaning of Life


I view service as, primarily, an important political outlet for defending and advancing philosophy on campus and at large. In addition to discharging the usual professional service responsibilities like refereeing, I am currently serving in the following roles at CSULB:




I was raised by my maternal grandma in a single-bedroom apartment in Roselle, New Jersey, ~ 20 miles SW of NYC. I live in Los Angeles. My wonderful spouse and I were married by Elvis. I have a delightful toddler. I'm a proud union member

I used to tour around the world in a diy punk band and shoot and edit feature-length indie films. Until recently, my family had a Jack Russel Terrier named 'Kjeks'.

In my free time these days, I'm usually at a playground with my kid, or enjoying the many others parts of LA that make it one of the world's best cities, like its restaurants, bars, and Dodger Stadium.