Paul Fairfield

Paul Fairfield



Arts and Science

People Directory Affiliation Category
  • PhD, McMaster University
Specializations / Research Interests

Continental Philosophy

Personal Website


My writings fall broadly within the traditions of philosophical hermeneutics, phenomenology, and pragmatism, and major influences on my work to date include Hans-Georg Gadamer, Paul Ricoeur, Gabriel Marcel, Martin Heidegger, Karl Jaspers, John Dewey, Friedrich Nietzsche, and Augustine. Current projects include two books: one titled History and Hermeneutics, for the Elements series with Cambridge University Press, and one tentatively titled The Void: An Existential-Political Analysis.

Whatever free time I have is largely spent with my wife, Gwyneth, and our fourteen-year-old daughter, Evangeline, or at the gym. I am an eleventh-generation Canadian and a practicing Roman Catholic.


  • Introducing Dewey. London: Bloomsbury, 2024.
  • Historical Imagination: Hermeneutics and Cultural Narrative. Lanham: Rowman and Littlefield, 2022.
  • Essays: The Philosophy Crush Podcast. Outskirts Press, 2021.
  • Philosophical Reflections on Antiquity: Historical Change. Lanham: Lexington, 2020.
  • Artistic Creation: A Phenomenological Account. Co-authored with Jeff Mitscherling. Lanham: Lexington Books, 2019.
  • Teachability and Learnability: Can Thinking Be Taught? New York: Routledge, 2016.
  • Death: A Philosophical Inquiry. New York: Routledge, 2014.
  • Philosophical Hermeneutics Reinterpreted: Dialogues with Existentialism, Pragmatism, Critical Theory, and Postmodernism. London: Bloomsbury, 2011.
  • Education After Dewey. London: Bloomsbury, 2009.
  • Why Democracy? Albany: State University of New York Press, 2008.
  • Public/Private. Lanham: Rowman and Littlefield, 2005.
  • The Ways of Power: Hermeneutics, Ethics, and Social Criticism. Pittsburgh: Duquesne University Press, 2002.
  • Moral Selfhood in the Liberal Tradition: The Politics of Individuality. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2000.
  • Theorizing Praxis: Studies in Hermeneutical Pragmatism. New York: Peter Lang, 2000.
  • Is There a Canadian Philosophy? Reflections on the Canadian Identity. Co-authored with Gary B. Madison and Ingrid Harris. Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press, 2000.
Edited Books
  • Relational Hermeneutics: Essays in Comparative Philosophy. Co-edited with Saulius Geniusas. London: Bloomsbury, 2018.
  • Hermeneutics and Phenomenology. Co-edited with Saulius Geniusas. London: Bloomsbury, 2018.
  • Education and Conversation: Exploring Oakeshott’s Legacy. Co-edited with David Bakhurst. London: Bloomsbury, 2016.
  • Education, Dialogue and Hermeneutics. London: Bloomsbury, 2010.
  • John Dewey and Continental Philosophy. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 2010.