Benjamin L.S. Nelson (Ph.D, Waterloo, 2017) is a junior scholar of philosophy. He is currently a member of the National Coalition of Independent Scholars, and pursuing training as a registered paralegal in Ontario. At the University of Waterloo he served as a course instructor, was the winner of the Wubnig essay prize in the history of philosophy, and graduate of their Cognitive Science diploma program. He has publications in Ratio Juris and the Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence. He has presented papers at the annual meetings of the Canadian Philosophical Association, the North American Society for Social Philosophy, the European Society for Analytic Philosophy, the World Congress of Philosophy, and the graduate philosophy society at University College Dublin.

His scholarly work is in the field of philosophy of law and the philosophy of the social sciences, centering on the notion of publicity in law. The Draughty Soul is his blog for thinking through tough issues on selected topics related to arts, law, ethics, cognition, and society. He has published an essay in popular philosophy at The Philosopher’s Magazine. He is also a sketch hobbyist in his spare time.


– “Hobbes’s third jurisprudence: legal pragmatism and the dualist menace,” Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence, 32(1) (Feb. 2020)
– “Secret law revisited,” Ratio Juris (Dec. 2019)

– “Making minds like ours,” The Philosopher’s Magazine (2014)