Meet our Team

Phila M. Msimang


Phila M. Msimang is a lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at Stellenbosch University. He serves as the Secretary of the Azanian Philosophical Society (the APS) and is a member of several international research groups working on the problem of race in science. Msimang’s most recent publications deal with the significance of population history to the human sciences as well as the uses and abuses of population descriptors, particularly race and ethnicity, in health.

Selected publications

Book chapters

  • 2021. Social races in biomedical settings. In Ludovica Lorusso and Rasmus Grønfeldt Winther (eds) Remapping Race. Routledge. (HTML)
  • 2021. Revisiting the question of race and biology in the South African social sciences. In David Ludwig, Inkeri Koskinen, Zinhle Mncube, Luana Poliseli, Luis Reyes-Galindo (eds) Global Epistemologies and Philosophies of Science. Routledge. (HTML)

 Journal articles

  • 2022. The IRR as false witness: how the Institute of Race Relations strategically misinforms us about race and policy (as a threat to deliberative democracy). Theoria: A Journal of Social and Political Theory 172 (2), 1–31. (HTML)
  • 2022. What is race? Four philosophers, six views. Philosophical Papers 51 (1), 115–145. (HTML)
  • 2020. Medicine, anti-realism, and ideology: variation in medical genetics does not show that race is biologically real. Northern European Journal of Philosophy 20 (2), 117–140. (HTML)
  • 2015. Problems with the physical in physicalism. South African Journal of Philosophy 34 (3), 336–345. (HTML)​

 Scientific communications

  • (forthcoming). What is the biological profile of ‘the’ South African?
  • 2022. That only the elite should have children is a worrying argument. South African Journal of Bioethics & Law 15 (1), 6–7. (HTML); Don’t shy away from the elitist implications of your argument: Response to de Roubaix. South African Journal of Bioethics & Law 15 (2), 42–43. (HTML)

A more comprehensive list of Msimang’s academic publications can be found on Google Scholar. These publications are available for download on Researc​hGate​.


  • Philosophy 214: Subdisciplines in Philosophy I (Modern Epistemology)
  • Philosophy 345: Analytic Philosophy (Philosophy of Mind)
  • Honours coursework and supervision
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Applied Ethics
  • MPhil (Applied Ethics) Biomedical Ethics
  • MPhil (Applied Ethics) Social and Political Ethics
  • MA coursework and supervision (topics in philosophy)