Contact Information


James Swindal is a Professor of Philosophy. He specializes in Continental Philosophy, Critical Theory, Action Theory, and Catholic Philosophy. He is currently working on a book project, with co-author William Wright, on An Existentialist Account of Eucharistic Action. He is also engaged in projects on Critical Theory and Psychoanalysis, Charles Taylor’s Catholic Philosophy, and Robert Brandom’s Social Pragmatism.


  • Ph.D., Philosophy, Boston College, 1993
  • S.T.B., Theology, Gregorian University, 1989
  • M.A., Philosophy, Gonzaga University, 1982
  • B.A., Political Science, Seattle University, 1978



  • Existence and Action (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012).
  • Reflection Revisited (New York: Fordham University Press, 1999).

Edited Books

  • Habermas II, 4 vols., co-edited with D. Rasmussen (London: SAGE, 2009).
  • The Sheed and Ward Anthology of Catholic Philosophy, co-edited with Harry Gensler (Rowman and Littlefield, 2005).
  • Ethics: Contemporary Readings, co-edited with H. Gensler and E. Spurgin (New York: Routledge, 2004).
  • Critical Theory, 4 vols., co-edited with D. Rasmussen (London: SAGE, 2004).

Articles and Book Chapters

  • “Husserl,” in The Cambridge Habermas Lexicon (Cambridge University Press, 2019), 576–79.
  • “Marx on Nature,” Frontiers of Philosophy in China 9.3 (September 2014): 358–69.
  • “Critical Theory, Negative Theology, and Transcendence,” in Continental Philosophy and Philosophy of Religion, ed. M. Joy (Dordrecht: Kluwer, 2010), 187–220.
  • “Second Generation Critical Theory,” in History of Continental Philosophy, vol. 8 (University of Chicago Press, 2010), 227–52.
  • “Can a Discursive Pragmatism Guarantee Objectivity?” in Philosophy and Social Criticism 33.1 (2007): 113–26.
  • “Can Strategic Reasoning Alone Account for the Formation of Social Norms?” in Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review (2005): 363–72.
  • “Nietzsche and Habermas and the Critique of Instrumental Reason,” in Habermas, Nietzsche, and Critical Theory, ed. B. Babich (Amherst NY: Prometheus Books, 2004), 131–46.
  • “Habermas’s ‘Unconditional Meaning Without God’: Pragmatism, Phenomenology, and Ultimate Meaning,” in Ultimate Reality and Meaning 26.2 (2003): 126–49.
  • “Discourse, Reflection, and Commitment,” Philosophy and Social Criticism 29.2 (2003): 151–65.
  • “Pragmatism and a ‘Catholic’ Philosophical Anthropology,” Catholic Education 6.1 (2002): 71–95.
  • “Equality and Democratic Societies,” Philosophy Today 45.5 (2001): 180–90.
  • “The Role of the Will in Postconventional Personal Identity Formation,” in Jürgen Habermas: SAGE Masters in Social Thought Series, vol. 4, ed. J. Swindal and D. Rasmussen (London: SAGE, 2001), 48–63.
  • “Ought There Be a Catholic Philosophy?” American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 73.3 (1999): 449–75.
  • “Nietzsche, Critical Theory, and a Theory of Knowledge,” in Nietzsche, Theories of Knowledge, and Critical Theory: Nietzsche and the Sciences I, Boston Colloquium in the Philosophy of Science, ed. B. Babich and R. Cohen (Dordrecht: Kluwer, 1999), 253–64.