Xian He

Xian He is a Ph.D. candidate at Zhejiang University. He mainly works in the area of epistemology and ethics. He tries to understand belief, love, and emotion within a unified framework. When not doing philosophy, he spends most of his time reading novels, playing video games, and staying with his family.

He is also the builder and maintainer of this website. 



Visiting Student, University of Zurich


Ph.D. in Philosophy, Zhejiang University


M.A. in Philosophy, Sun Yat-Sen University


B.A. in Administration, Shandong Normal University



Paper in Progress

When is Evidence No Longer Prior? (under review)

Some pragmatists argue that there are both practical and epistemic reasons to believe. This raises the question of how to weigh these distinct types of reasons to determine all-things-considered verdicts regarding what one ought to believe. Recent models have suggested that when practical reasons for belief exceed a certain threshold, practical reasons become prior to epistemic reasons. However, these models are affected by a threshold problem: they fail to specify the relevant threshold. This prevents them from being sufficiently informative and motivated. I argue that the threshold is determined by higher-order practical reasons that favor conformity to certain epistemic reasons. This threshold view yields intuitive verdicts across various cases and provides a clear guide for determining when we should believe for practical or epistemic reasons. Moreover, the view can accommodate the normative mechanism and contextual dependence of the threshold in these models.

Fitting Love and Uniqueness (under review)

According to the Quality Account of love, only lovable properties of the beloved person, such as beauty, wisdom and kindness, can make love for that person fitting. The account has been criticized for leading to implausible conclusions. If this account is correct, it would seem fitting to replace one’s lover with someone who possesses the same or more lovable properties, or stop loving someone who has lost these properties. Moreover, it is unclear how the Quality Account can differentiate between the fittingness conditions of love and other similar attitudes which seem also fitting in virtue of the same properties. I propose a new response to these objections. I argue that these challenges can be met by appealing to a distinctive lovable property that all objects of love share: their being metaphysically irreplaceable. Metaphysical Irreplaceability, along with other lovable properties, determines how worthy of love a person is. 

Epistemic Norm, Epistemic Competence, and Role Obligation (under review)

A Weird Consequentialism (manuscript)

When to Believe Against the Evidence (manuscript)


The Threshold of Weighing Evidential and Practical Reasons

• “Epistemology in China” Conference, Shanghai, China, 09/2023.

• 2023 Beijing International Graduate Conference in Analytic Philosophy, Beijing, China, 01/2023 (Online)

Fitting Love, and Metaphysical Irreplaceability

• Salzburg Conference for Young Analytic Philosophy 2023, Salzburg, Austria, 09/2023 (Online)

• 12th ZJU Contemporary Anglo-american Philosophy Workshop, Hangzhou, China, 03/2023

• 6th Beijing Analytical Philosophy Forum, Beijing, China, 11/2022 (Online)

The Normativism of Belief and The Constitutive Error Argument (信念的规范主义与错误构成论证) 

• 5th “Philosophy & Science” Young Scholar Workshop, Chengdu, China, 04/2023

• 5th ZJU Contemporary Anglo-american Philosophy Workshop, Hangzhou, China, 03/2022

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