Joanna Lawson


I’m a philosopher. I work at Oklahoma State University.

My research focuses on empirically informed philosophy of mind, metaphysics, and epistemology.

You can email me at: joanna [dot] lawson [at] okstate [dot] edu


Woman in classes smiles in front of tree







I draw from cognitive science to better understand intentional mental states, the metaphysics of selfhood, and the epistemology of self-knowledge. 


I strive to be a more learner-centered teacher, in order to help my students see the beauty, richness, and value of philosophy.


My podcast project (NeuroDiving, with co-creator Amelia Hicks) was a finalist for the 2022 PRX Big Questions Project, sponsored by the John Templeton Foundation.

short (mostly academic) bio


Before my current position at OK State as a visiting assistant professor, I was a graduate student at Yale, where I got my PhD in 2023. I worked with L.A. Paul and Zoltán Gendler Szabó. 

Before that, I received a master’s in philosophy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a master’s in philosophical theology from Oxford. Before that, I worked for a brief and depressing time in a small gray cubicle in a law office that specialized in social security disability law. And before that I got a bachelor’s from Grove City College. 

Other fun facts


I love playing games, taking walks, cooking food, and singing badly at karaoke bars.

I live with a saint, a gremlin, and a philosopher.