Nancy Sherman

Nancy Sherman

Professor of Philosophy

Georgetown University, Department of Philosophy

Nancy Sherman is University Professor and Professor of Philosophy. She has a University Affiliate appointment at Georgetown Law’s Center on National Security and the Law and is a Faculty Affiliate at the Kennedy Institute of Ethics. She holds a Ph.D. from Harvard in philosophy where she was awarded the George Plympton Adam Prize for the most distinguished dissertation in the area of history of philosophy. She received an MLitt. from the University of Edinburgh and her B.A. from Bryn Mawr College. From 1997 to 1999 Sherman served as the first Distinguished Chair in Ethics at the U.S. Naval Academy, designing the brigade-wide required military ethics course as well as laying the groundwork for the new Stockdale Ethics Center. Before coming to Georgetown, she taught at Yale for seven years. She has research training in psychoanalysis at the Washington Psychoanalytic Institute.

Sherman is a New York Times Notable Author. She is the author of Afterwar: Healing the Moral Wounds of our Soldiers (Oxford, 2015); The Untold War: Inside the Hearts, Minds, and Souls of our Soldiers (W.W. Norton, 2010) a New York Times Editors’ pick; Stoic Warriors: The Ancient Philosophy Behind the Military Mind (Oxford, 2005); Making a Necessity of Virtue: Aristotle and Kant on Virtue (Cambridge, 1997); The Fabric of Character: Aristotle’s Theory of Virtue, (Oxford 1989) and the editor of Critical Essays on the Classics: Aristotle’s Ethics, Ed. (Rowman and Littlefield, 1999). She has written over 60 articles in the area of ethics, military ethics, the history of moral philosophy, ancient ethics, the emotions, moral psychology, and psychoanalysis. She has delivered over 60 named or keynote lectures and plenary addresses here and abroad.

Sherman has been honored with fellowships for her work from the Guggenheim Foundation, NYU Center for Ballet and the Arts, the Woodrow Wilson Center, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Council for Learned Societies, the Mellon Foundation, the Yale Whitney Humanities Center, the American Philosophical Society, and the Newcombe Fellowship of the Woodrow Wilson Foundation. She received the Washington Psychoanalytic Institute’s Gary O. Morris Award for her psychoanalytic writing.

She has been a frequent contributor in the media, appearing on the Diane Rehm Show, the Kojo Namdi Show, PBS’s Religion and Ethics Newsweekly, BBC, Australian, Broadcasting System, Canadian Broadcasting System, MSNBC, FOX News, CNN, WABC, This American Life, The Leonard Lopate Show, Here and Now, VOX, and many NPR affiliates. Her articles, opinion pieces, reviews and mention of her work have appeared widely in the press, including in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The LA Times, The Wall Street Journal, TIME Magazine, Newsweek, Huffington Post, The Chronicle Review, The San Diego Tribune, The Denver Post, The Boston Globe, The Baltimore Sun, The Dallas Morning News, The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, the Pittsburgh Gazette, the Hartford Courant, the Providence Journal, the Post and Courier, Dissent, and the Philosophers’ Magazine among other venues. She is a contributor to the New York Time’s Stone and Psychology Today.

Since 1995, Sherman has consulted for the U.S. Armed Forces on issues of ethics, moral injury, stoicism, resilience, and posttraumatic stress, lecturing here and abroad. In October 2005, Sherman visited Guantanamo Bay Detention Center as part of an independent observer team, assessing the medical and mental health care of detainees.

Sherman has recently worked on emotional expression in dance and dynamic movement. Her essays “Dancers and Soldiers Sharing the Dance Floor” and “Trenches, Cadences, and Faces” explore the dynamic expression of emotions and mechanisms of empathy in bodily expression. 

Her current larger book is a general audience book on Stoicism.


Harvard University – Ph.D.