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Event Series

Harvard Colloquium for Intellectual History


Founded in 2001, the Colloquium sponsors visiting lectures, workshops, and conferences on diverse themes of interest to scholars in history, philosophy, political theory, literature, and the human sciences. The Colloquium recently held a lecture series on the work of Hannah Arendt, which examined the legacy of this significant scholar from a variety of perspectives. See more information on Intellectual History at Harvard.

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Series Events Calendar

In the Wake: Exposing White German Abolitionist Performativity and the Limits of Empathy Harvard Colloquium on Intellectual History & Committee on Degrees in Social Studies — In the Wake: Exposing White German Abolitionist Performativity and the Limits of Empathy
November 10, 2022
4:30pm - 5:45pm
  • Obenewaa Oduro-Opuni – Assistant Professor of German Studies, University of Arizona
  • Chair Andrew Brandel – Lecturer on Social Studies, Harvard University; Seminar Co-chair, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
Confessions of the Flesh: Michel Foucault’s Final Volume of "The History of Sexuality" Harvard Colloquium for Intellectual History & European Politics Seminar — Confessions of the Flesh: Michel Foucault’s Final Volume of "The History of Sexuality"
December 5, 2019
9:00am - 6:00pm
  • James Bernauer, S.J. – Kraft Family Professor of Philosophy, Boston College
  • Julian Bourg – Associate Professor of History, Boston College; CES Local Affiliate & Seminar Co-chair, Harvard University
  • Rey Chow – Anne Firor Scott Professor of Literature, Duke University
  • Agustin Colombo – Postdoctoral Researcher, Boston College & University of Paris, VIII
  • Bernard Harcourt – Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law, Columbia Law School; École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS)
  • Lynne Huffer – Samuel Candler Dobbs Professor of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Emory University
  • Mark D. Jordan – Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Christian Thought & Richard Reinhold Niebuhr Professor of Divinity, Harvard Divinity School; Professor of Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality, Harvard University
  • Austin Sarfan – Graduate Student, Program in Literature, Duke University
  • Annabel Kim – Assistant Professor of Romance Languages and Literatures, Harvard University
  • Edward McGushin – Professor of Philosophy, Stonehill College
  • Durba Mitra – Assistant Professor of Women, Gender, and Sexuality and Carol K. Pforzheimer Assistant Professor, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
Adorno, Aesthetic Negativity, and the Problem of Idealism A Spring 2019 Lecture Series at Harvard University — Adorno, Aesthetic Negativity, and the Problem of Idealism
April 23, 2019
6:00pm - 8:00pm
  • Robert Pippin – Evelyn Stefansson Nef Distinguished Service Professor of Social Thought, Philosophy, The University of Chicago
Primacy of the Object: Adorno's Aesthetic Theory and the Return of Form Adorno's Aesthetic Theory - A Spring 2019 Lecture Series at Harvard University — Primacy of the Object: Adorno's Aesthetic Theory and the Return of Form
April 3, 2019
6:00pm - 8:00pm
  • Eva Geulen – Professor for European Culture and the History of Knowledge, Humboldt University of Berlin
Adorno as Tourist Adorno's Aesthetic Theory - A Spring 2019 Lecture Series at Harvard University — Adorno as Tourist
March 5, 2019
6:00pm - 8:00pm
  • Sherry Lee – Associate Professor of Musicology and Associate, Trinity College, University of Toronto
Art Has No Power Over Schein Through Its Abolition Adorno's Aesthetic Theory - A Spring 2019 Lecture Series at Harvard University — Art Has No Power Over Schein Through Its Abolition
February 20, 2019
6:00pm - 8:00pm
  • Michael Rosen – Senator Joseph S. Clark Professor of Ethics in Politics and Government, Harvard University
​Adorno's Negative Dialectics at 50 International Conference - Day 2 Sessions — ​Adorno's Negative Dialectics at 50
November 19, 2016
9:00am - 6:00pm
Adorno's Negative Dialectics at 50 International Conference - Day 1 Sessions — Adorno's Negative Dialectics at 50
November 18, 2016
9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Seyla Benhabib – Eugene Meyer Professor of Political Science and Philosophy, Yale University
  • ​Jay Bernstein – Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, The New School for Social Research
  • Maeve Cooke – Associate Professor of German Social and Political Thought , University College Dublin
  • Konstancja Duff – Doctoral Student, Department of Philosophy, University of Sussex
  • Peter E. Gordon – Amabel B. James Professor of History, Harvard University; Resident Faculty & Seminar Co-chair, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University; Faculty Affiliate, Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, Harvard University; Faculty Affiliate, Department of Philosophy, Harvard University
  • Brian O'Connor – Professor of Philosophy, University College Dublin
  • Max Pensky – Professor of Philosophy, Binghamton University
  • Michael Rosen – Senator Joseph S. Clark Professor of Ethics in Politics and Government, Harvard University
  • Welcome Remarks by Max Pensky – Professor of Philosophy, Binghamton University and Peter E. Gordon – Amabel B. James Professor of History; Faculty Affiliate , Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, and Faculty Affiliate, Department of Philosophy, Harvard University.
The Lucidity of Moderation: Raymond Aron as a "Committed Observer"'
April 14, 2016
4:15pm - 6:00pm
Hannah Arendt and the Problem of the Public Intellectual Harvard Colloquium for Intellectual History — Hannah Arendt and the Problem of the Public Intellectual
April 6, 2016
5:00pm - 7:00pm
  • Benjamin Wurgaft – History, Anthropology, and Science, Technology, and Society, MIT
Eichmann in Jerusalem: Conscience, Normality, and the Rule of Narrative Hannah Arendt Lecture Series — Eichmann in Jerusalem: Conscience, Normality, and the Rule of Narrative
March 30, 2016
5:00pm - 7:00pm
  • Dana Villa – Professor of Political Science, University of Notre Dame
Hannah Arendt and the Laboring Body Harvard Colloquium for Intellectual History — Hannah Arendt and the Laboring Body
March 9, 2016
7:00pm - 9:00pm
  • Patchen Markell – Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Chicago
The Institution of Meaning: — A Defense of Anthropological Holism
April 16, 2015
1:00pm - 4:00pm
The Dark Cradle of Modernity: Burckhardt, Nietzsche, and the Idea of the Renaissance
April 2, 2015
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Martin Ruehl – Lecturer in German Thought, Trinity Hall, Cambridge University
CANCELLED — The Stakes of Opposing Democracy: Conservative Revolution and the Crisis of the Weimar Republic
February 10, 2015
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Geoff Eley – Karl Pohrt Distinguished University Professor of Contemporary History, University of Michigan
Philology: The Forgotten Origins of the Modern Humanities
November 20, 2014
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • James Turner – Professorof History, University of Notre Dame
“The Jefferson Rule: Why We Think the Founding Fathers Have All the Answers"
November 6, 2014
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • David Sehat – Professor of History, Georgia State University
Variations on Simone Weil: European and North American Receptions of Her Antisemitica
October 22, 2014
4:15pm - 6:00pm
A Tale of Two Cities and the History of Revenge
September 30, 2014
6:00pm - 8:00pm
  • Catherine Gallagher – Eggers Professor of English Literature, University of California at Berkeley
Walter Benjamin and Isaiah Berlin: Modes of Jewish Intellectual Life in the 20th Century Walter Benjamin and Isaiah Berlin: Modes of Jewish Intellectual Life in the 20th Century
September 29, 2014
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Martin E. Jay – Ehrman Professor of History, Emeritus, University of California, Berkeley
Adorno as Educator in Minima Moralia
April 2, 2014
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Ulrich Plass – Associate Professor of German Studies, Wesleyan University
Thomas Hobbes and Civil Conversation Thomas Hobbes and Civil Conversation
February 26, 2014
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Quentin Skinner – Regius Professor of Modern History, Emeritus, University of Cambridge; Barber Beaumont Professor of the Humanities, Queen Mary, University of London
Reluctant Return: Peter Gay and the Cosmopolitan Work of Enlightenment
February 20, 2014
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Helmut Walser Smith – Professor of History, Vanderbilt University
The Political Origins of Global Justice The Political Origins of Global Justice
November 21, 2013
5:00pm - 7:00pm
  • Samuel Moyn – Chancellor Kent Professor of Law and History, Yale Law School
Milton Friedman: The Economist as Historian
November 13, 2013
5:00pm - 7:00pm
  • Jennifer Burns – CES Speaker
Global 'Unsocial Sociability' in Enlightenment Political Thought
October 3, 2013
5:30pm - 7:30pm
  • Sankar Muthu – Professor of Political Science, University of Chicago
The Law of Kinship: Anthropology, Psychoanalysis, and the Family in France The Law of Kinship: Anthropology, Psychoanalysis, and the Family in France
April 8, 2013
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Camille Robcis – Professor of History and French, Department of History, Columbia University
Making a Success of the League of Nations: Internationalism and Intellectual Cooperation
March 27, 2013
4:15pm - 6:00pm
CANCELLED - Terrorism as a Political Modernism
March 11, 2013
4:15pm - 6:00pm
What Is Jewish (if anything) about Sir Isaiah Berlin's Political Philosophy? What Is Jewish (if anything) about Sir Isaiah Berlin's Political Philosophy?
January 28, 2013
5:00pm - 7:00pm
  • Arie Dubnov – Department of History, Stanford University
German Émigrés and the Weimar Origins of the Cold War
October 1, 2012
4:00pm - 6:00pm
  • Udi Greenberg – Assistant Professor of History, Dartmouth College
Intentionality and Irony: The Missed Encounter of Quentin Skinner and Hayden White Intentionality and Irony: The Missed Encounter of Quentin Skinner and Hayden White
September 20, 2012
2:00pm - 4:00pm
  • Martin E. Jay – Ehrman Professor of History, Emeritus, University of California, Berkeley
French Philosemitism From the Revolution to the Present
September 10, 2012
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Maurice Samuels – Professor of French, Department of French, Yale University
Philosophy as a Behavioral Science: Action, Decision, and the Analytic Revolution in Postwar American Philosophy
April 12, 2012
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Joel Isaac – Lecturer in the History of Modern Political Thought, Christ's College, University of Cambridge
Working Knowledge: Toward a History of the American Human Sciences in the Twentieth Century
April 11, 2012
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Joel Isaac – Lecturer in the History of Modern Political Thought, Christ's College, University of Cambridge
A Conversation with Claude Lanzmann
March 22, 2012
6:00pm - 7:30pm
The Myth of Revolution
February 7, 2012
6:30pm - 8:00pm
  • Dan Edelstein – Associate Professor of French; Europe Center Research Affiliate, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Stanford University
Beyond the Language: Totalitarianism as a Key Concept of the 20th Century
October 12, 2011
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Juan Francisco Fuentes – Director of the Group of Advanced Research (From Empire to Nation), Real Colegio Complutense, Harvard University
Psychoanalysis and Anti-Semitism in Postwar Germany
September 21 - 10, 2012
4:15pm - 1:30pm
  • Dagmar Herzog – Daniel Rose Faculty Scholar, Professor of History at the Graduate Center, City University of New York
The Obscenity of Objectivity : Post-Holocaust Antisemitism and the Invention-Discovery of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
September 21, 2011
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Dagmar Herzog – Daniel Rose Faculty Scholar, Professor of History at the Graduate Center, City University of New York
The Radical Enlightenment's Critique of the American Revolution
March 31, 2011
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Jonathan Israel – Professor of Modern European History, School of Historical Studies, Institute for Advanced Study
An Atheism that is Not Humanist Emerges in French Thought An Atheism that is Not Humanist Emerges in French Thought
March 7, 2011
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Stefanos Geroulanos – Executive Director, Remarque Institute, and Professor of History, New York University
Ideas of Terror and Terrorism in 20th-Century Europe Ideas of Terror and Terrorism in 20th-Century Europe
March 3, 2011
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Julian Bourg – Associate Professor of History, Boston College; Local Affiliate & Seminar Co-chair, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
Christianity in Transatlantic Perspective: The Case of Philip Schaff (1819-1893)
February 16, 2011
6:00pm - 8:00pm
The Protestant Boomerang: What the Foreign Missionary Project Did to the United States in the 20th Century
November 1, 2010
4:00pm - 6:00pm
  • David Hollinger – Preston Hotchkis Professor of American History, University of California Berkeley; President, Organization of American Historians
Symposium: The Future of American Intellectual History Symposium: The Future of American Intellectual History
April 23, 2010
3:00pm - 6:00pm
  • Leslie Butler – Associate Professor of History, Dartmouth College
  • Charles Capper – Professor of History, Boston University
  • David D. Hall – Bartlett Research Professor of New England Church History, Harvard Divinity School
  • David Hollinger – Preston Hotchkis Professor of American History, University of California Berkeley; President, Organization of American Historians
  • James Kloppenberg – Charles Warren Professor of American History, Harvard University; Seminar Co-chair, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
The Origins of Leo Strauss's Political Philosophy
March 1, 2010
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Thomas Meyer – Max Weber-Kolleg, Universität Erfurt
Status, Interest, and the Making of Foreign Policy: French Perspectives on the ‘Reversal of Alliances’ (1755–1756)
February 18, 2010
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • John Shovlin – Visiting Scholar 2009-2010, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
American Expatriates in Interwar Paris: A Reconsideration
November 19, 2009
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Brooke Blower – Assistant Professor of History, Boston University
Of Empty Places: Slavoj Zizek and Ernesto Laclau, or the End of the Affair
October 22, 2009
4:15pm - 6:00pm
Genius and Geniuses in the Eighteenth Century
September 17, 2009
4:15pm - 6:00pm
The Little Platoons of Society': Equality and Obligation in American Social Thought in the 1970s and 1980s
May 7, 2009
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Daniel Rodgers – Professor, Princeton University
Trauma, the Sacred, and the Sublime
April 7, 2009
6:00pm - 8:00pm
  • Dominick Lacapra – Bryce and Edith Bowmar Professor in Humanistic Studies, Cornell University
An Integrated History of the Holocaust: Some Methodological Problems An Integrated History of the Holocaust: Some Methodological Problems
March 17, 2009
4:15pm - 6:00pm
Theodor W. Adorno: One Last Genius
March 16, 2009
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Detlev Claussen – Journalist and a Professor of Social Theory, Culture, and Sociology, University of Hanover
Cosmopolitans in an Ethnonational Age? Jews and Austrians in the First Republic
February 26, 2009
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Malachi Hacohen – Associate Professor and Bass Fellow, History, Political Science and Religion, Duke University
Rethinking Foucault: Terror, Horror, and the Execution of Damiens Rethinking Foucault: Terror, Horror, and the Execution of Damiens
December 8, 2008
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Paul Friedland – Visiting Scholar 2009-2010, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
Gibbon and the Invention of Gibbon: Chapters 15 and 16 of the Decline and Fall Revisited
November 21, 2008
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • J.G.A. Pocock – Harry C. Black emeritus professor, Johns Hopkins University
Cambridge Historians and the Contextual Approach to the History of Political Thought
November 12, 2008
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Mark Bevir – Professor of Political Science, University of California-Berkeley
Notes on the History of Scandal: Violette Nozière, 1933
November 6, 2008
5:15pm - 7:00pm
  • Sarah Maza – Jane Long Professor in the Humanities, Northwestern University
Word and Image in the Philosophy of Hobbes Word and Image in the Philosophy of Hobbes
October 2, 2008
4:15pm - 6:00pm
  • Quentin Skinner – Regius Professor of Modern History, Emeritus, University of Cambridge; Barber Beaumont Professor of the Humanities, Queen Mary, University of London

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