Biography




Dr. Claudia Leeb is a recently tenured Associate Professor in the School of Politics, Philosophy and Public Affairs at Washington State University. She is also a research affiliate of the Center for European Studies at Harvard University. She is originally from Austria and received her Ph.D. in Political Theory and her M.A. in Gender Studies and Feminist Theory from The New School for Social Research in New York City. She also holds a Ph.D. in Psychology and Philosophy of Science and an M.S. in Psychology and from the University of Vienna in Austria. Prior to coming to Washington State University in 2012, she taught at Roanoke College and Dartmouth College, and held post-doc positions at Harvard University and the University of Chicago.


Claudia works at the intersection of early Frankfurt school critical theory, feminist political theory, and psychoanalytic theory to address questions of power and socio-political change in contemporary societies. She is best known for bringing together German critical theory (in particular Marx and Adorno) and psychoanalytic thought (in particular Freud and Lacan), and contemporary Continental thinkers to critically analyze structures of power, political subjectivity, and more recently, the far right. 


She is the author of four books: The Politics of Repressed Guilt: The Tragedy of Austrian Silence (2018, Edinburgh University Press); Power and Feminist Agency in Capitalism: Toward a New Theory of the Political Subject (2017, Oxford University Press), for which she has received the ASCINA (Austrian Scientists and Scholars in North America) Award for research excellence; Working-Class Women in Elite Academia: A Philosophical Inquiry (2004, Peter Lang Publisher); and Die Zerstӧrung des Mythos von der Friedfertigen Frau [The Destruction of the Myth of the Peaceful Woman] (1998, Peter Lang Publisher).


She currently working on a new book project titled: Analyzing the Far-Right: The Feminist Dialectics of the Socio-Economic and the Psychological.


Claudia has published peer-reviewed articles in several journals, including Political Theory, Perspectives of Politics, Theory & Event, Contemporary Political Theory, Constellations, Social Philosophy Today, The Good Society, Open Cultural Studies, Philosophy & Social Criticism, The Berlin Journal of Critical Theory, and Radical Philosophy Review. She has also contributed several peer-reviewed book-chapters to anthologies. 


Her research has been supported with several distinguished grants and fellowships, including a Fulbright Fellowship and an APART (Austrian Program for Advanced Research and Technology) Fellowship. In 2020 she held the WSU Arts and Humanities Fellowship, which supports her new book project Analyzing the Far Right. She lectures around the world. 


Claudia is also a dedicated educator. In Washington State University’s Politics, Philosophy, and Public Affairs School, she teaches both politics and philosophy courses, and offers undergraduate courses on the development of Marxist thought, feminism and philosophy, contemporary political theory, and classical political thought. She offers graduate courses that introduce graduate students to the core fields in political theory and philosophy, and supervises doctoral candidates in political theory and philosophy.


Claudia also actively serves Washington State University and the profession. In 2020 she served as an American Political Science Association (APSA) Leo Strauss Award Committee member. The Leo Strauss Award is given in recognition of the best doctoral dissertation in the field of political philosophy.


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