Skip to main content

Payton’s research focuses mainly on topics in analytic feminist philosophy and social metaphysics. She came to UVA from Howard University, and prior to that she earned her PhD at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. Her dissertation, How To Be Social, is a collection of social metaphysics papers focused on the relationship between socially constructed properties and natural language. Her current research is focused on the nature of systemic marginalization, methods in analytic feminism, and the social construction of moral responsibility. She has published academic work in Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, as well as public philosophy in Boston Review.


Much of Payton’s current research is informed by her work with community advocacy organizations, and she is developing an undergraduate course which incorporates elements of advocate curriculums alongside feminist theory. This Fall she is teaching PHIL 1000: Introduction to Philosophy, and in the Spring she will teach an undergraduate course on moral responsibility and a graduate seminar on social metaphysics. Her non-philosophical interests include hiking, writing short stories, and memorizing random pieces of 17th c. English literature (non-philosophical ≠ normal!). She is originally from a sheep farm in the Pacific Northwest.