The Rhetoric Department supports research and teaching in interdisciplinary approaches to the law and in social and political thought from classical antiquity to contemporary times. Faculty integrate theories and methods from the humanities and the social sciences to approach such issues as justice, language, violence, revolution, personhood, evidence, technology, post-coloniality, nationalism, cosmopolitanism and human rights, in various legal traditions and their histories. They work in canonical political and social theory as well as critiquing it. Rhetoric faculty also have significant strength in the areas of contemporary French and German thought and the history of modern European continental philosophy and is especially interested in the pertinence of these intellectual traditions to fundamental problems of the contemporary world.

The Rhetoric faculty principally working in the area of political and legal theory are David Bates, Pheng Cheah, Marianne Constable, Samera Esmeir, and Wendy Brown (by courtesy).

For admissions information about the Rhetoric doctoral program, please visit here.

Recent Rhetoric dissertations in these areas include:

Eugene McCarthy, Corporate Personhood(s): The Incorporation of Novel Persons in American Law, Society, and Literature, 1870-1914
Teresa K-Sue Park, If Your World Was Built on Dispossession: Strategies of Conquest by Settlement in America
Alisa Sanchez, Preoccupations with Modernity: Geopolitics of Knowledge in Colombian Reproduction Laws
Satyel Larson, Bearing Knowledge: Law, Reproduction and the Female Body in Modern Morocco, 1912-Present
Angela Hill, “This Modern Day Slavery”: Sex Trafficking and Moral Panic in the United Kingdom