About Carlos

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Hi there! My name is Carlos Mariscal. I’m a postdoctoral fellow in the philosophy of biology at Dalhousie University. I work with W. Ford Doolittle, winner of the 2014 Herzberg Medal. I was a student of Robert Brandon and Alex Rosenberg at Duke University. This page is about me as a person. See my research, teaching, or cv elsewhere.

Who I am

I am an assistant professor in the Philosophy Department at the University of Nevada, Reno, where I am also a member of the Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology (EECB) and Integrative Neuroscience Programs. Before arriving at Nevada, I received my Ph.D. from Duke University and did postdoctoral work at Dalhousie University. I have presented my work in dozens of universities around the world, organized several research workshops, and published articles in philosophy, biology, and interdisciplinary journals. My work largely focuses on what we can know about life in the Universe, the origins of life on Earth and elsewhere, and the many philosophical issues raised by the multidisciplinary science of astrobiology.

Where I'm From

I’m from the border between the U.S. and Mexico. Specifically, I’m from a small, rural town known as Chaparral. I grew up in the Gadsden purchase and went to New Mexico State University. My parents are both from Mexico City and I am a dual-citizen (US & Mexico). I am fluent in Spanish and decent at American Sign Language. At one point in my undergraduate career, I did a semester at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania in Indiana, Penn. through the National Student Exchange. I also did the International Student Exchange Program at Macquarie University in North Ryde, NSW, Australia. Aside from New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Australia, and North Carolina, I have lived in Mexico and Seattle.

What I've Done

While in NMSU, I initially majored in biology, but switched to journalism and philosophy because I wanted to develop skills at thinking, investigating, writing, presenting my writing, and dealing with people. Before pursuing a career in philosophy, I worked at newspapers as a reporter, editor, and graphic designer. These include the NMSU Round Up, the Clovis News-Journal, and the Las Cruces Bulletin. I started my own newspaper and unsuccessfully managed it for six years before it fell apart (seriously! Although, to be fair, it overlapped with much of my undergraduate work). I left the field of newspaper journalism at the same time as most of the advertisers and content creators. Instead, I chose the far more employable career as an academic philosopher.

What I Like

In my hypothetical spare time, I like to draw comics, write microfiction or screenplays, play poker, develop card games, do mixed martial arts, and drink mezcal or fine tequila with my friends. For the first few years of my graduate career, my friends and I would try a new restaurant every week. Now, we just host a rotating ‘dinner club,’ which has turned into a salon of sorts. I regularly have a side project of some sort, usually leading to tangible results. You should check out my various non-philosophical ventures here.

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