Simon Kidd

Simon Kidd - 2013

I studied philosophy, psychology and logic at University College Dublin, and subsequently undertook postgraduate research in philosophy, being awarded a Master degree in 1994. My postgraduate dissertation was titled ‘Language and Ideology: The Significance of Hermeneutics and Semiotics for the Theory of Ideology’, and it involved an analysis of major figures such as Hegel, Marx, Heidegger, Gadamer, Ricoeur, Habermas and Eco.

During my student years, I acquired a personal interest in Asian and Middle Eastern philosophies and, in 1995, I moved to Cambridge where I was accepted as an MPhil student (preparatory to PhD research) at King’s College. The late John Cooper, a Persianist at the University’s Centre of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, with a strong interest in Sufism, provisionally offered to supervise my research. Perceiving my interests, he recommended that I produce a survey of the secondary literature on a mid-17th century Persian text called the Dabestan. I spent the summer of 1995 in the University Library, completing this task. My application for funding from the British Council was unsuccessful, however, and I was unable to pursue my formal studies.

While in Cambridge, I worked in bookselling and publishing. I cut my teeth as an editor at The Running Head, and later specialised in document analysis and digital encoding at Griffin Brown. In addition, from 1996 to 1999 I was Assistant Director of the Science and Human Dimension Project, a ‘public understanding of science’ program based at Jesus College and directed by writer, John Cornwell.

I moved to Australia in 2003 and became a citizen in 2005. Between 2003 and 2008 I was the primary carer for my two children, although I also worked part-time as circumstances permitted, first as a philosophy tutor at the University of Notre Dame in Fremantle, and later in Extension at the University of Western Australia. In 2008 I was employed as a full-time senior research officer at UWA, reporting to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Education. In this role I was the executive officer for several committees and working parties, and was closely involved in the University’s major Review of Course Structures, culminating in 2009 in the Future Framework.

In 2011 I completed the Master of Teaching degree at UWA. I have a particular interest in teaching philosophy in schools, and in the education of the ‘gifted and talented’. From 2010 to 2014 I was secretary of the Association for Philosophy in Schools (APIS) in Western Australia, and a facilitator at the annual WA Philosothon. I am currently teaching in the Philosophy and Religion department at Hale School.