Dawn Wilson

Dr Dawn M Wilson

Lecturer in Philosophy

Faculty of Arts, Cultures and Education


01482 465184

Dawn has published a multi-stage theory of photography which has influenced a new direction in the philosophy of photography.

She joined the University of Hull in October 2011, having previously worked at St Anne's College, Oxford and the universities of Warwick, Southampton, Kent and University College Cork.

Dawn collaborates with interdisciplinary and international research networks on projects dedicated to photography, art, perception, image-theory, and cultural conservation.

Currently her research includes comparing photography with music and working on the topics of time, visibility, portraiture and artistic practice.


Research Interests

  • Philosophy of photography

  • Philosophy of images / bildtheorie

  • Aesthetics

  • Philosophy of art

  • History of analytic philosophy

  • Wittgenstein

Research groups


*In 2011 Dawn M Phillips changed her name to Dawn M Wilson.*

Dawn M Wilson, ‘Facing the Camera: Self-portraits of Photographers as Artists’, Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism (2012) Vol.70 No.1 pp. 56-66

Dawn M Phillips, ‘Photography and Causation: Responding to Scruton’s Scepticism’, British Journal of Aesthetics (2009) Vol. 49 Issue 4 pp.327-340

Dawn M Phillips, ‘Fixing the Image: Re-thinking the ‘Mind-independence’ of Photographs', Postgraduate Journal of Aesthetics (2009) Vol.6 Issue 2

Diarmuid Costello and Dawn M Phillips, ‘Automatism, Causality and Realism: Foundational Problems in the Philosophy of Photography’, Philosophy Compass 4/1 (2009): pp.1-21

David Connearn and Dawn M Phillips 'Wittgenstein’s House at Skjolden: Conservation and Interpretation’ (2011) in Ludwig Wittgenstein: Contextualisations of a Genius (eds.) Jan Drehmal and Kristina Jaspers (Junius-Verlag)

Full list


Programmes taught on (2019)

Modules list

  • Reason, Logic and Argument

  • Philosophy of Contemporary Thought and Culture

  • 20th Century Analytic and Continental Philosophy

  • Philosophy and Visual Culture

  • Philosophy Dissertation

Research PhDs

Dawn Wilson welcomes enquiries from students with interests such as:

  • Philosophy of photography

  • Aesthetics

  • Philosophy of art

  • Portraiture

  • Philosophy of images and depiction

  • Wittgenstein

  • History of analytic philosophy

Completed PhDs

Dr Susan Jane Walsh, A Class Act: Class and Taste in the Work of Grayson Perry (2016)

Teaching awards and accolades

  • PGCHE - Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education

  • FHEA - Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Professional highlights

Academic qualifications

  • BA (Hons.) in English and Philosophy (Durham)

  • MA (Dist.) in Philosophy (Durham)

  • PhD in Philosophy (Durham)

External roles

  • Served on the executive committees of the British Society of Aesthetics (2010-2016) and the Society for Women in Philosophy (2005-2016).

  • Current member of the Aristotelian Society, British Philosophical Association, British Society of Aesthetics, British Wittgenstein Society, European Society of Aesthetics, Nordic Wittgenstein Society, Society for the Study of the History of Analytic Philosophy, and the Society for Women in Philosophy.