Stephen T. Asma Ph.D.

Stephen T. Asma, Ph.D., is Professor of Philosophy in the Department of Humanities, History, and Social Sciences at Columbia College Chicago, where he currently holds the title of Distinguished Scholar. Asma is the author of several books: Against Fairness, Why I Am a Buddhist, On Monsters: An Unnatural History of Our Worst Fears, Stuffed Animals and Pickled Heads: The Culture and Evolution of Natural History Museums, Following Form and Function and Buddha for Beginners.

In 2003, Dr. Asma was Visiting Professor at the Buddhist Institute in Phnom Penh, Kingdom of Cambodia. There he taught "Buddhist Philosophy" as part of its graduate program in Buddhist Studies. His book The Gods Drink Whiskey: Stumbling Toward Enlightenment in the Land of the Tattered Buddha (HarperOne, 2005) explores the Theravada Buddhism of the region. He has also traveled and studied in Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Hong Kong, and Mainland China, eventually living in Shanghai, China in 2005.

In 2009, Dr. Asma became a Fellow of the LAS Research Group in Mind, Science and Culture at Columbia College Chicago. He is currently researching the connections between affective neuroscience and philosophy of mind.

Author of

Against Fairness

From the school yard to the workplace, there’s no charge more damning than “You’re being unfair!” Born out of democracy and raised in open markets, fairness has become our de facto modern creed. In our zealous pursuit of fairness, we have banished our urges to like one person more than another, one thing over another, hiding them away as dirty secrets of our humanity. In Against Fairness, philosopher Stephen Asma drags them triumphantly back into the light. Life isn't fair.   Read now.