Ronald Sundstrom Headshot

Ronald Sundstrom


Program Director
Full-Time Faculty


Ronald R. Sundstrom is Professor of Philosophy at the University of San Francisco. He is also a member of USF’s African American Studies program, teaches for the university’s Honors College, and is the Humanities Advisor for the SF Urban Film Festival. His research focuses on the philosophy of race and the related areas of racism, xenophobia, and mixed-race identity; political philosophy and urban policy; and figures in African American political theory, especially Frederick Douglass. He published several essays and two books in these areas, The Browning of America and The Evasion of Social Justice (SUNY 2008) and Just Shelter: Integration, Gentrification, and Race and Reconstruction (Oxford 2023).


  • Social and political philosophy
  • Philosophy of race and racism
  • African American philosophy
  • Asian American philosophy

Research Areas

  • Urban Policy and Affairs
  • Political philosophy
  • African American philosophy
  • Frederick Douglass
  • Race and racism


  • Director of African American Studies
  • USF Provost Search Committee
  • USFFA Policy Board Member
  • Philosophy Department Chair
  • Faculty Director of the Core


  • University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, PhD in Philosophy, 1999
  • University of Minnesota, Duluth, BA in Philosophy, 1994

Prior Experience

  • Assistant Professor in Philosophy, University of Memphis

Awards & Distinctions

  • USF National Endowment for Humanities Chair, 2020
  • College of Arts and Sciences Full-Time Faculty Service Award, 2017
  • Co-Winner of USF Distinguished Teaching Award, 2010
  • Ignatian Service Award, University of San Francisco, 2009

Selected Publications

  • Just Shelter: Gentrification, Integration, Race & Reconstruction (OUP, 2023)
  • The Browning of America & The Evasion of Social Justice (SUNY, 2008).
  • "Frederick Douglass," entry on the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
  • “The Prophetic Tension Between Race Consciousness and the Ideal of Colorblindness,” in To Shape a New World: Essays on the Political Philosophy of Martin Luther King, Jr. eds. Tommie Shelby and Brandon Terry (Harvard UP, 2018): 127–145.
  • “Xenophobia and Racism,” co-authored with David Haekwon Kim, Critical Philosophy of Race, 2:1 (2014): 20-45.
  • “Responsible Mixed-Race Politics,” in Philosophy and the Mixed Race Experience, ed. Tina Fernandes Botts (Lexington Books, 2017): 21–55.