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Moritz Rathjen

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Before coming to Freiburg, I studied philosophy and mathematics at the University of Duisburg-Essen. As a member of the research group "Language, Cognition and Text" at the Graduate School for Humanities Göttingen, I worked on philosophical problems concerning fictionality. In addition to my research, I give tutorials in philosophy of science at UCF and I am a representative of the PhD students of the Faculty of Philosophy and the Faculty of Philology (Philodocs) and the speaker of the Working Committee of the Doctoral Candidate Councils (GAA).

My research interests are in the areas of philosophy of language, metaphysics and philosophy of mind. I am also interested in topics of philosophy of mathematics and fictionality. My PhD project Tense: Semantics and Metaphysics focuses on the semantics of natural language and its relation to the metaphysics of time.


Moritz Rathjen
Alte Universität, 1. OG
Bertoldstr. 17
79089 Freiburg, Germany 

Brief Academic Curriculum Vitae

2014: Academic assistant ("Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter") at the Chair in Epistemology and Theory of Science of Prof. Wolfgang Freitag, University College Freiburg/Department of Philosophy, University of Freiburg (Germany)

2014: PhD student in philosophy at the University of Freiburg (Germany)

2014: Member of the Graduate School of Humanities Göttingen (GSGG) in the research group "Language, Cognition and Text"

2007–2014: Studies at the University of Duisburg-Essen in the subjects philosophy and mathematics, undergraduate assistant at the chairs of Prof. Thomas Spitzley (Philosophy), Prof. Dirk Hartmann (Philosophy) and Prof. Detlev Leutner (Psychology).


Since 2016 associated member of the Centre for Philosophy of Time (Milan)

Since 2016 member of the Society for Philosophy of Time (SPoT)

Since 2015 associated member of the GRK 1767 "Fiktionales und Faktuales Erzählen"

Selected Talks

July 2016: "Tensed Facts and the Tensed Constitution of Reality" at the workshop Time and Change of the Society for Philosophy of Time (Bonn)

June 2016: "Are the A-Theory and the B-Theory of Time Incompatible?" at the University of Duisburg-Essen

Nov 2015: "Metaphysical Implications of Temporal Indexicality" at the Göttingen Graduate School of Humanities

Apr 2015: "If Fiction Were True - On the Semantics and Metaphysics of Fiction" at the Graduate School Factual and Fictional Narration Freiburg

Feb 2015: "Language and Metaphysics" at the Research Colloquium, Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Freitag, University of Freiburg

Project – Tense: Semantics and Metaphysics
(To be finished until end of 2017)
One of the main questions in the metaphysics of time is whether the world is fundamentally changing or not. This question arises from the tension between our scientific picture of the world, in which there is no fundamental change, and our everyday experience. The A-theory of time holds that the world is fundamentally changing, the B-theory of time denies it. A main source of arguments in support of the A-theory comes from semantic considerations. On behalf of the A-theory it is argued that the truth of tensed sentences can only be explained metaphysically, i.e. by the fact that the world is fundamentally changing. Proponents of the B-theory attempt to provide an explanation of the truth of tensed sentences, without being committed to a fundamental change. Hence, with regard to semantic questions the debate focuses on the metaphysical implications of linguistic tense. The project is aimed at defending the B-theory's semantics with a focus on its metaphysical implications.