Paul Livingston
                                          Associate Professor of Philosophy
                                                                                           Department of Philosophy

                                                                      University of New Mexico






I work on the philosophy of mind, philosophy of language, phenomenology, and political philosophy, analytic and continental.  I also have interests in the philosophy of science.  I have published on Husserl, Russell, Wittgenstein, Quine, Sellars, Putnam, Heidegger, Derrida, Agamben, Badiou, and other twentieth-century and contemporary figures.  I am strongly committed to the development of "pluralist" philosophy, i.e. philosophy located beyond the divide between the analytic and continental traditions. 

Current CV




I have published three books: 

The Politics of Logic: Badiou, Wittgenstein, and the Consequences of Formalism (Routledge, 2011)

In this book, Livingston develops the political implications of formal results obtained over the course of the twentieth century in set theory, metalogic, and computational theory. He argues that the results achieved by thinkers such as Cantor, Russell, Gödel, Turing, and Cohen, even when they suggest inherent paradoxes and limitations to the structuring capacities of language or symbolic thought, have far-reaching implications for understanding the nature of political communities and their development and transformation. Alain Badiou's analysis of logical-mathematical structures forms the backbone of his comprehensive and provocative theory of ontology, politics, and the possibilities of radical change. Through interpretive readings of Badiou's work as well as the texts of Giorgio Agamben, Jacques Lacan, Jacques Derrida, Gilles Deleuze, and Ludwig Wittgenstein, Livingston develops a formally based taxonomy of critical positions on the nature and structure of political communities. These readings, along with readings of Parmenides and Plato, show how the formal results can transfigure two interrelated and ancient problems of the One and the Many: the problem of the relationship of a Form or Idea to the many of its participants, and the problem of the relationship of a social whole to its many constituents.

Read sample chapters from The Politics of Logic here.

Review of The Politics of Logic at Notre Dame Reviews by Levi Bryant






Philosophy and the Vision of Language (Routledge, 2008)

Philosophy and the Vision of Language explores the history and enduring significance of the twentieth-century turn to language as a specific object of investigation and resource for philosophical reflection. It traces the implications of the access to language in some of the most prominent projects and results of the historical and contemporary tradition of analytic philosophy, including the projects of Frege, Wittgenstein, Sellars, Quine, Brandom, and Cavell. Additionally, it demonstrates the deep and enduring connections between the analytic tradition's inquiry into language and the parallel inquiries of phenomenology, critical theory, and deconstruction over the course of the twentieth century. Finally, it documents some of the enduring consequences of philosophy's inquiry into language for contemporary questions of social and political life. The book provides a clear, accessible and widely inclusive introduction to the relevance of language for analytic and continental philosophy in the twentieth century and is readable by non-specialist audiences. It should contribute to a growing historical sense of the location of the analytic tradition in a broader geography of social, political and critical thought. Furthermore, it contributes to building bridges between this tradition and the neighboring continental ones from which it has all too often been estranged.





Philosophical History and the Problem of Consciousness (Cambridge, 2004)

The problem of explaining consciousness today depends on the meaning of language: the ordinary language of consciousness in which we define and express our sensations, thoughts, dreams and memories. Paul Livingston argues that this contemporary problem arises from a quest that developed over the twentieth century, and that historical analysis provides new resources for understanding and resolving it. Accordingly, Livingston traces the application of characteristic practices of analytic philosophy to problems about the relationship of experience to linguistic meaning.


Paul Livingston traces the development of the characteristic practices of analytic philosophy to problems about the relationship between experience and linguistic meaning, focusing on the theories of such philosophers as Carnap, Schlick, Neurath, Husserl, Ryle, Putnam, Fodor, and Wittgenstein.


Clearly written and avoiding technicalities, this book will be eagerly sought out by professionals and graduate students in philosophy and cognitive science.




My page on


My page on

I am editor for 20th century philosophy at Routledge Encylopedia of Philosophy and also editor for continental philosophy at

I am also a faculty member at the Global Center for Advanced Studies.

I was recently interviewed by John Protevi of the New APPS blog.  Read the interview here.

In March, 2012, New APPS conducted a symposium on my paper "Derrida and Formal Logic: Formalizing the Undecidable"

Below are some published and forthcoming papers, recent reviews, sample chapters from The Politics of Logic, and unpublished papers in progress. 




Some published and forthcoming papers:

Russellian and Wittgensteinian Atomism

Philosophical Investigations 24:1 (2001), pp. 30-54


Experience and Structure: Philosophical History and the Problem of Consciousness

Journal of Consciousness Studies 9:3 (2002), pp. 15-34


Husserl and Schlick on the Logical Form of Experience

Synthese 132:2 (2002), pp. 239-72


Thinking and Being: Heidegger and Wittgenstein on Machination and Lived-Experience

Inquiry 46:3 (2003), pp. 324-45


Functionalism and Logical Analysis

In David W. Smith and Amie Thomasson, ed., Phenomenology and Philosophy of Mind.  Oxford University Press, 2005.


'Meaning is Use' in the Tractatus

Philosophical Investigations 27:1 (2004), pp. 34-67


Agamben, Badiou, and Russell

Continental Philosophy Review 42:3 (2009), pp. 297-325               


The Breath of Sense: Language, Structure, and the Paradox of Origin

Konturen vol. 2 (2009)


Derrida and Formal Logic: Formalizing the Undecidable

Derrida Today 3:2 (2010), pp. 221-39


Wittgenstein, Turing, and the “Finitude” of Language

Linguistic and Philosophical Investigations 9 (2010), pp. 215-47


Badiou and the Consequences of Formalism
Cosmos & History 8:1 (2012), pp. 130-49


Phenomenal Concepts and the Problem of Acquaintance

Journal of Consciousness Studies 20: 5-6 (2013), pp. 71-92.


Badiou, Mathematics, and Model Theory

Forthcoming in MonoKL


Formalism and the Critique of Reason

Forthcoming (2015) in Kritik in Zeiten der Kontingenz (Velbrück Verlag)


The Sense of Finitude and the Finitude of Sense

In Semantics and Beyond: Philosophical and Linguistic Investigations (Ontos Verlag, 2014)


Realism and the Infinite

Speculations: A Journal of Speculative Realism IV (2013), pp. 99-117

Realism and the Infinite (longer version) (unpublished)


How do we Recognize Strong Critique?

 Crisis and Critique 3 (2014), pp. 85-115.


Wittgenstein Reads Heidegger, Heidegger Reads Wittgenstein: Thinking Language Bounding World

Forthcoming (2015) in Beyond the Analytic-Continental Divide: Pluralist Philosophy in the Twenty-First Century



Reviews and review articles:


Scott Soames: Philosophical Analysis in the Twentieth Century

Inquiry 49:3 (2006), pp. 290-311


Alain Badiou: Being and Event

Inquiry 51:2 (2008), pp. 217-238


Alain Badiou: Logics of Worlds

Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 10/8/09


William Child: Wittgenstein

Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 11/21/11


Lee Braver: A Thing of this World: A History of Continental Anti-Realism

Continental Philosophy Review 45:1 (2012), pp. 161-70.


Paolo Crivelli: Plato's Account of Falsehood: A Study of the Sophist

Ancient Philosophy 33 (2) (2013), pp. 431-438


Christopher Norris: Derrida, Badiou, and the Formal Imperative

Forthcoming (2015) in Speculations







The Politics of Logic: Badiou, Wittgenstein and the Consequences of Formalism


Selected Chapters:

Chapter 1: An Inquiry into Forms of Life

Chapter 3: Deleuze, Plato, and the Paradoxes of Sense

Chapter 5: Wittgenstein and Parmenides

Chapter 7: Formalism and Force: The Many Worlds of Badiou

Chapter 8: Badiou vs. Paradoxico-Criticism


Some current projects:

I am currently working on four book projects; here are some portions of two of them.  These are draft versions; please do not quote or circulate without permission.


The Logic of Being: Realism, Truth, and Time 

(Manuscript in preparation for review)

The Logic of Being: Plato, Heidegger, Frege -  talk given at UNM - Sept. 6, 2013


Consciousness and Presence:

Phenomenal Concepts and the Problem of Acquaintance

Structuralism and Open Questions

Phenomenology and Reflexivity: Getting Clear on Self-Representational Theories (PowerPoint only)


Beyond the Analytic-Continental Divide: Pluralist Philosophy in the Twenty-First Century (co-edited with Jeffrey Bell and Andrew Cutrofello) (Routledge, 2015)

(blurb and list of chapters and contributors)


The Problems of Contemporary Philosophy: A Critical Guide for the Unaffiliated (co-authored with Andrew Cutrofello)  (Polity Press, 2015)