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. Dr. Leeb 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 from the University of Vienna in Austria. Before 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.


Dr. Leeb 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, psychoanalytic thought, 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).


Dr. Leeb has just finished a new book project titled: Analyzing the Far-Right: The Dialectics  between the Socio-Economic and the Psychological. Currently she is also working on The Concept of Power: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press), which she will be completing in the spring  2023 semester.


She 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. 


She lectures about her work around the world. In addition, several distinguished grants and fellowships have supported her research, including a Fulbright Fellowship and an APART (Austrian Program for Advanced Research and Technology) Fellowship. 


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


Finally, Dr. Leeb also actively serves the profession and Washington State University. 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 political philosophy.


For fun, Dr. Leeb loves to travel the world and explore new countries and cultures.


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