Dr. David C. Ring

Dr. David C. Ring

“The Universe is not only queerer [stranger] than we suppose, but queerer [stranger] than we can suppose.”

J. B. S. Haldane (1892-1964), British evolutionary biologist, in Possible Worlds and Other Papers (1927), p. 286.

One of the three co-chairs for the Jazz & Philosophy Intermodal Conference for 2017, Dr. David C. Ring retired in 2015 after fifteen years at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, CA as a full professor and chair of the Philosophy department.


Attending Cornell University and studying under Robert Stalnaker (undergraduate advisor), Jaegwon Kim, Norman Kretzmann, and Norman Malcolm, Dr. Ring went on to receive his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (1974-82) writing on Descartes’s theory of ideas: “Material Falsity, Objective Reality, and Representation in Descartes’s Theory of Ideas,” under dissertation supervisor Terry Penner, with a minor in psychology and the history of science.


Dr. Ring has taught philosophy at:

  • University of Wisconsin-Madison (1975-1982) (T.A.)
  • University of Texas at Austin (1982-1983) (tenure track)
  • North Carolina State University (post-doctoral fellowship in logic) (1985-86)
  • University of Texas at Arlington (1989-90)
  • Southern Methodist University (1984-89; 1991-95)
  • Pasadena City College (1995-96)
  • California State University Long Beach (1995-97)
  • Long Beach City College (1996-99)
  • Cerritos College (1998-99)
  • Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, CA (1999-2015)


During his sabbatical at Orange Coast College in 2009, Dr. Ring began working in the philosophy of jazz.  That work led to the eventual development of a new editable wiki website devoted to the subject: http://PhilosophyOfJazz.net (poj.fm) begun in March, 2016, with the help of web designer Glenn Zucman, of gzdesign.

Working with long time collaborator, Dr. Charles Otwell, Ring and Otwell gave a talk at Northern Arizona University on the complexity of defining jazz using a Galactic model on March 31, 2016.  This talk and questions and answers can be viewed here: http://philosophyofjazz.net/videos, as well as a film made on the same subject during Dr. Ring’s sabbatical with the help of videographer and editor Kyle Trulin.


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