Professor Matthew Ratcliffe
Professor of Philosophy



After completing a PhD in History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Cambridge in 1999, I taught at University College Cork, Durham University and, most recently, the University of Vienna, where I was Professor for Theoretical Philosophy and Head of Department. I joined the Philosophy Department at York as a Professor in September 2018.

Departmental roles

  • Deputy Head of Department



Most of my research falls within the areas of phenomenology, philosophy of mind, and philosophy of medicine and health. In particular, I have sought to show how phenomenological research can be brought into dialogue with psychiatry, in ways that are mutually illuminating. In so doing, I have addressed puzzling forms of experience associated with diagnoses such as depression, schizophrenia, and post-traumatic stress disorder. I have published on a range of related topics, including emotion, feeling and mood, empathy and interpersonal experience, hope and trust, perceptual experience, delusion, hallucination, and time-consciousness.

I am the author of four books:

  • Rethinking Commonsense Psychology (Palgrave, 2007)
  • Feelings of Being (Oxford University Press, 2008)
  • Experiences of Depression (Oxford University Press, 2015)
  • Real Hallucinations (MIT Press, 2017)


My current research plans are focused around a substantial interdisciplinary project on the nature of grief. Other topics that I am working on at the moment include the structure of emotional experience, the interpersonal and social dimensions of emotion-regulation, the phenomenology of linguistic thought, the experience of possibility, and the relationships between traumatic events and psychiatric illness. I welcome enquiries from prospective research students wishing to work on these and a range of other topics.



Most of my teaching has been in the areas of phenomenology, philosophy of mind, and philosophy of psychiatry. I currently teach the MA Dissertation Preparation module.

External activities

Editorial duties

I am on the editorial advisory committee of the journal Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences and was, until recently, an associate editor. I have also refereed articles and manuscripts for over fifty journals and publishers.

Invited talks and conferences

I give frequent keynote and plenary lectures at conferences and workshops in the UK and overseas.


Contact details

Prof. Matthew Ratcliffe
Professor of Philosophy
Department of Philosophy