Meet Our Faculty: Dr. Richard Bilsker

Meet Dr. Richard BilskerA photo of Dr. Richard Bilsker, on right, accepting an award from CSM President Dr. Maureen Murphy

Professor of Philosophy; Coordinator, Humanities and Political Science; Director, Honors Curriculum

Faculty member since 1995

Courses Taught

All the philosophy courses



I love music, reading, and movies. I also participate in several tabletop role-playing (TTRPG) groups. I am married to Karen Janowsky, who is a poet, novelist, writing instructor, and yoga teacher. We have a son who is now a CSM student. We also live with six cats and a parrot.

Educational Background 

  • Doctor of Philosophy, Florida State University
  • Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy, Florida Atlantic University
  • Associate of Arts in General Studies, Broward College


As a lifelong student of the history of ideas, I think the most important thing we can teach our students is the ability to think. I would include here the ability to understand and evaluate the thoughts of others, as well as the skills needed to construct one’s own chain of reasoning. Different classes naturally require different methods, but this is a constant. My teaching style over the years has evolved to combine Socratic Method with group work and formal and informal presentations, depending on the course.

I have found that references to popular culture help make the connections between the world inside the classroom and the world outside the classroom. Philosophy can be described as probing into fundamental questions and looking at answers to those questions. Four big ones are these:

  • Who (or What) am I?
  • What is Real?
  • What can I know?
  • What should I do? and/or Who should I be?

It's important for students to know that these questions have been pondered not just by academics or in classrooms, but rather that answers exist all around us. I have been talking about novels, movies, television shows, music, and other media in my classes ever since I started teaching more than 30 years ago. Popular culture can be a gateway for people to think more deeply about fundamental questions and also show that there are more interesting ways to interact with popular culture than to passively consume it. 

I was the recipient of the 2022 Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award. Nominated and conferred by my peers, this was a special recognition to me.

Our faculty and staff are highly dedicated professionals who love the college and the communities we serve.

If students want to learn how to think more critically or to learn more about how humanities and social sciences are intertwined, they would benefit from exploring ideas with me.

Notable Conferences or Publications

I have numerous conference presentations and published works to my name, spanning my career and across a variety of disciplines and specialties. Most recently I presented at the Popular Culture Association and AFAACT. My recent publications have been the academic study of popular culture. Articles and book reviews have appeared in philosophy, sociology, and political science journals.

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Last updated: 3/22/24

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