PROFESSOR SPOTLIGHT: Matthew Eshleman – Philosophy and Religion

PROFESSOR SPOTLIGHT: Matthew Eshleman - Philosophy and Religion

Have you ever been curious about the person lecturing at the front of the classroom? In “Professor Spotlight,” we reach out to UNCW professors to learn more about these individuals teaching us every day. Stay tuned to see if any of your professors pop up!


NAME: Matthew C. Eshleman

POSITION: Associate Professor of Philosophy

DEPARTMENT: Philosophy and Religion


What is your hometown?

My family moved around. I was born in Lima, Peru, grew up on the Lower East Side and eventually moved to Cincinnati, Ohio.

When did you come to Wilmington?


What was your undergraduate degree in?

Major: Philosophy; minor: Afro-American Studies.

Where did you get your undergraduate degree?

University of Minnesota.

What is your favorite thing about Wilmington?

Gazing at a full moon on the beach.

Where is your favorite place to eat in Wilmington?

Rx and Brasserie [du Soleil].

What is your favorite song?

That’s tough. Right now I’m working on John Coltrane’s version of “My Favorite Things.”

What is your favorite spot on campus?

Turtle watching at the pond.

What is your favorite movie or TV show?

“Requiem for the American Dream.”

What do you think is the most interesting part of your field of study?

Self-awareness. Can we say what it would be like to have experiences but be unaware of them? Could we do philosophy without self-awareness?

What is the last book you read?

Jeffrey Winters’ “Oligarchy.” It’s a must read!

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I told people “a neurosurgeon” but I really didn’t know…

What are your unique hobbies or talents?


What do you wish you knew more about?

What our POTUS thinks about.

What is your dream destination?


What is something on your bucket list?

Start a cultural revolution that renders higher education free for everyone!

What is something you think everyone should do at least once in their life?

Read [Aldous] Huxley’s The Doors of Perception.

What is one thing you couldn’t live without?


Would you rather get up early or stay up late?

Definitely: stay up late.

What advice can you give to students about life?

Some students think about classes like a game: achieve the best grades possible for the least amount of work. Slightly better students work hard primarily to fill other peoples’ desires. The best students find something that genuinely interests them, they begin to fall in love with it and they go on to become as excellent at it as humanely possible…