Dr. Gail Weiss

Gail Weiss

Distinguished Research Professor of Philosophy General Secretary for the International Merleau-Ponty Circle
Rome 558
Phone: 202-994-4297

Areas of Expertise

phenomenology, existentialism, feminist theory, critical race theory, philosophy of literature

Gail Weiss


Ph.D. Yale University


Monographs, Edited Journals, and Edited Volumes

Guest Co-Editor (with Debra Bergoffen) of Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy Cluster Issue on “Contesting the Norms of Embodiment” Volume 27.2 (Winter 2012).

Guest Co-Editor (with Debra Bergoffen) of Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy Special Issue on “Ethics of Embodiment” Volume 26.3 (Summer 2011).

Refiguring the Ordinary (Indiana University Press, 2008)

Intertwinings: Interdisciplinary Encounters with Merleau-Ponty (SUNY Press, 2008)

Feminist Interpretations of Maurice Merleau-Ponty (Pennsylvania State University Press, 2006)

Thinking the Limits of the Body (SUNY Press, 2003)

Body Images: Embodiment as Intercorporeality (Routledge, 1999)

Perspectives on Embodiment: The Intersections of Nature and Culture (Routledge, 1999)

Recent Articles, Book Chapters, and Encyclopedia Chapters

“Sedimented Attitudes and Existential Responsibilities” Body/Self/Other: The Phenomenology of Social Encounters, eds. Luna Dolezal and Danielle Petherbridge (SUNY Press, 2016, 181-193).

 “De-Naturalizing the Natural Attitude: A Husserlian Legacy to Social Phenomenology”: Journal of Phenomenological Psychology, vol.47 (2016), 1-16.

"The Normal, the Natural, and the Normative: Implications of Merleau-Ponty's Work for Feminist Theory, Critical Race Theory, and Disability Studies" Continental Philosophy Review Volume 48, Issue 1 (2015), 77-93.

“Body” entry for the International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Editor-in-Chief Hugh LaFollette (Wiley Press, 2015), DOI: 10.1002/9781444367072.wbiee806.

“The Myth of Woman Meets the Myth of Old Age: An Alienating Encounter with the Aging Female Body” Simone de Beauvoir’s Philosophy of Age: Gender, Ethics, and Time. Edited by Silvia Stoller. (Walter De Gruyter Press, 2014, 47-64).

“Pride and Prejudice: Ambiguous Racial, Religious, and Ethnic Identities of Jewish Bodies” Phenomenology, Embodiment, and Race, edited by Emily Lee. (SUNY Press 2014, 213-232).

“Uncosmetic Surgery in an Age of Normativity” Feminist Phenomenology and Medicine. Eds. Kristin Zeiler and Lisa Folkmarson Käll. (SUNY Press, 2014, 101-117).

“Beauvoir and Merleau-Ponty: Philosophers of Ambiguity” Beauvoir Engages Philosophy: Essays on Beauvoir’s Dialogue with Western Thought. Eds. Shannon Mussett and William A. Wilkerson. (SUNY Press, 2012, 171-190).

“Birthing Responsibility: On the Moral Significance of Natality” Coming to Life: Philosophies of Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Mothering. Eds. Sarah LaChance Adams and Caroline Lundquist. (Fordham U. Press, 2012, 109-119).

“Simone de Beauvoir” chapter for Part 1: “Main Figures in the phenomenological movement” The Routledge Companion to Phenomenology. Eds. Sebastian Luft and Søren Overgaard. (Routledge Press, 2012), 92-102.

“Embodying the Ethical” (co-authored with Debra Bergoffen). Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy Special Issue on “Ethics of Embodiment” Volume 26.3 (Summer 2011), 453-460.

“Sharing Time across Unshared Horizons” Time in Feminist Phenomenology. Eds. Helen Fielding, Dorothea Olkowski, and Christina Schües. (Indiana University Press, 2011, 171-188). 

Forthcoming Publications

“Race and Phenomenology” 6,000 word chapter commissioned for the Routledge Companion to the Philosophy of Race, eds. Linda Martìn Alcoff and Paul Taylor (Routledge Press, forthcoming).

“The Silverman Network” Between Philosophy and Non-Philosophy: Essays in Honor of Hugh J. Silverman (1945–2013), eds. Peter Gratton, Donald A. Landes, and Leonard Lawlor (SUNY Press, forthcoming).

“The ‘Normal Abnormalities’ of Disability and Aging: Merleau-Ponty and Beauvoir” Feminist Phenomenology Futures. Eds. Helen Fielding and Dorothea Olkowski (Indiana University Press, forthcoming).

“Ambiguities of Desire: Beauvoir and Irigaray” The Matter of Distance: Beauvoir and Irigaray. Eds. Emily Parker and Anne Van Leeuwen. (SUNY Press, forthcoming).

“Doing Time in a For-Profit Space: Re-Negotiated Identities in the Prison-Industrial Complex,” Rethinking Feminist Phenomenology: From the Theoretical to the Practical, edited by Sara Cohen-Shabot and Christina Landry (Rowman & Littlefield, forthcoming.)

“A Genealogy of Women’s (Un)Ethical Bodies” New Feminist Perspectives on Embodiment. eds. Luna Dolezal and Clara Fischer (Palgrave Macmillan, forthcoming).

Recent Conference Presentations

“Doing Time in a For-Profit Space: Re-Negotiated Identities in the Prison-Industrial Complex” presented in an invited panel on “Continental Philosophy as Social Philosophy” at the American Philosophical Association Eastern Division Conference, Baltimore, January 2017.

“Doing Time in a For-Profit Space: Re-Negotiated Identities in the Prison-Industrial Complex,” Spotlight presentation at the 10th International Somatechnics conference on “Technicity, Temporality, Embodiment,” hosted by the U. of Queensland and Southern Cross University, Byron Bay, Australia, December 2016.

“The Shame of Shamelessness” presented at the 55th annual Society for Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy conference, Utah Valley University, Salt Lake City, UT, October 2016.

“Institution, Passivity, and the Shifting Geographies of the Flesh” invited presentation to “Merleau-Ponty: Philosophy from the Outside,” the 41st annual International Merleau-Ponty Circle conference at Brock University, Canada, September 2016.

“Feeling Differently: Cultivating Anti-Discriminatory Perceptual Habits” Keynote presentation for “Embodiment, Perception, and Critical Practice” conference, Ruhr-Universität, Bochum, Germany, July 2016.

Respondent at a Scholar’s Session devoted to my work at the 54th annual conference of the Society for Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy (SPEP), Atlanta, October 2015.

“Shifting Geographies of the Flesh” presented at the “Shifting the Geography of Reason XII: Technologies of Liberation” conference sponsored by the Caribbean Philosophical Association, Quintana Roo, Mexico, June 2015.

“Sedimented Attitudes and Existential Responsibilities” presented at the “Open Embodiments” Somatechnics 2015 conference, Center for Critical Studies of the Body, University of Arizona, Tucson, April 2015.

“A Genealogy of Women’s (Un)Ethical Bodies” Keynote presentation for the “Women Making a Difference in Philosophy” series, New College, Sarasota, FL, February 2015.


Classes Taught

2016/17 Courses

Philosophy of Race and Gender
Disciplining Bodies
Feminist Ethics
20th Century Continental Philosophy