Guide to the Seyla Benhabib papers, 1970-2005

(bulk 1994-1999)

John Hay Library
Box A
Brown University
Providence, RI 02912
Tel: 401-863-2146
Fax: 401-863-2093

Published in

Collection Overview

Title:Seyla Benhabib papers
Date range:1970-2005, (bulk 1994-1999)
Creator:Benhabib, Seyla
Extent:3 linear feet
Abstract:The Seyla Benhabib papers are primarily comprised of correspondence, administrative records, course materials, and writings. Much of the material relates to committees at Harvard University concerned with the status of women faculty.
Language of materials:English
Repository:John Hay Library
Collection number:Ms. 2010.045

Scope & content

The Seyla Benhabib papers are primarily comprised of correspondence, administrative records, course materials, and writings. The collection is arranged into eight series. Series 1, Correspondence, contains professional correspondence primarily about publishing and speaking invitations. These materials are dated between 1990 and 2002.

Series 2, Early Academics, is comprised of papers and notebooks written by Benhabib while in undergraduate or graduate school between 1970 and 1972. Manuscripts and presentations written by Benhabib following graduate school are located in Series 3, Writings, dating between 1973 and 1995.

Series 4, Course Materials, contain syllabi, course notes, and essays related to Benhabib’s work as a professor. Her courses were in philosophy, political science, and feminist theory taught between 1992 and 2002. Series 5, Writings by Others, includes articles, published and unpublished, by other scholars, some with Benhabib’s notes.

In Series 6, Committees, are notes, memos, and correspondence related to committees at Harvard University. The committees include the Committee on Degrees in Social Studies and the Committee on the Status of Women. These materials date between 1985 to 2004.

The professional materials in Series 7 include Benhabib’s curriculum vitae, application for the National Endowment for the Humanities, and newsclippings about Benhabib.

Finally, Series 8, Conferences, contains materials about conferences attended by and presented at by Benhabib. Conferences were international in scope. Some presentations given by Benhabib are included. The conferences date between 1982 to 2005.


The collection is arranged in the following eight series:
  • Series 1. Correspondence
  • Series 2. Early Academics
  • Series 3. Writings
  • Series 4. Course Materials
  • Series 5. Writings By Others
  • Series 6. Committees
  • Series 7. Professional
  • Series 8. Conferences

Biographical note

Seyla Benhabib is the Eugene Meyer Professor of Political Science and Philosophy at Yale University and was Director of its Program in Ethics, Politics and Economics (2002-2008). Professor Benhabib was the President of the Eastern Division of the American Philosophical Association in 2006-07 and Fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin in 2009. She is the recipient of the Ernst Bloch prize in 2009.

She is the author of Critique, Norm and Utopia: A Study of the Normative Foundations of Critical Theory (1986); Situating the Self: Gender, Community and Postmodernism in Contemporary Ethics (1992); winner of the National Educational Association’s best book of the year award); together with Drucilla Cornell, Feminism as Critique (1986); then with, Judith Butler, Drucilla Cornell and Nancy Fraser, Feminist Contentions: A Philosophical Exchange (1994); The Reluctant Modernism of Hannah Arendt (1996; reissued in 2002); The Claims of Culture: Equality and Diversity in the Global Era, (2002) and The Rights of Others: Aliens, Citizens and Residents (2004), which won the Ralph Bunche award of the American Political Science Association (2005) and the North American Society for Social Philosophy award (2004). Another Cosmopolitanism: Hospitality, Sovereignty and Democratic Iterations, based on Professor Benhabib’s 2004 Tanner Lectures delivered at Berkeley, with responses by Jeremy Waldron, Bonnie Honig and Will Kymlicka has appeared from Oxford University Press in 2006.

She has also edited 8 volumes, ranging from discussions of communicative ethics, to democracy and difference, to identities, allegiances and affinities, and gender, citizenship and immigration. The latest is a volume coedited with Judith Resnik of the Yale Law School and called, Mobility and Immobility: Gender, Borders and Citizenship (2009).

Her work has been translated into German, Spanish, French, Italian, Turkish, Swedish, Russian, Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian, Hebrew, Japanese and Chinese.

She has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Science since 1995 and has held the Gauss Lectures (Princeton, 1998); the Spinoza Chair for distinguished visitors (Amsterdam, 2001); the John Seeley Memorial Lectures (Cambridge, 2002), the Tanner Lectures (Berkeley, 2004) and was the Catedra Ferrater Mora Distinguished Professor in Girona, Spain (Summer 2005). She received an Honorary degree from the Humanistic University in Utrecht in 2004.

Biography taken from Benhabib's Yale University Faculty Biography

Access & Use

Access to the collection:There are no restrictions on access except for a number of folders as per the instructions of Professor Benhabib. The collection can only be seen by prior appointment because some materials may be stored off-site and cannot be produced on the same day on which they are requested.
Use of the materials:All researchers seeking to publish materials from the collections of the John Hay Library are requested to complete a Notice of Intent to Publish, available on the John Hay Library website or by request, prior to reproducing, quoting, or otherwise publishing any portion or extract from this collection. Although Brown University has physical ownership of the collection and the materials contained therein, it does not claim literary rights. It is up to the researcher to determine the owners of the literary rights and to obtain any necessary permissions from them.
Preferred citation:Seyla Benhabib papers, Ms.2010.045, Feminist Theory Archive, Brown University Library.
Contact information: John Hay Library
Box A
Brown University
Providence, RI 02912
Tel: 401-863-2146
Fax: 401-863-2093

Administrative Information

Acquisition:The Seyla Benhabib papers were donated to the Feminist Theory Archive by Seyla Benhabib in September 2010.
Author:Finding aid prepared by Amy Greer on behalf of the Pembroke Center for the Teaching and Research on Women and the Brown University Library.
Descriptive rules:Finding aid based on Describing Archives: A Content Standard (DACS)
Sponsor:Curatorial work and processing provided by the Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women on behalf of the Feminist Theory Archive, Brown University Library.

Additional Information


Series 1. Correspondence

1, Folder 1Letters to and from Publishers and Journal Editors Including Drafts of Benhabib's Work
1, Folder 2Cards Written to Benhabib
1, Folder 3Democracy and Difference - Volume Edited by Benhabib
1, Folder 4Academic Letters to Benhabib - Invitations, Publications, Issues
1, Folder 5Letters to Benhabib
1, Folder 6Miscellaneous Letters to and from Benhabib
1, Folder 7Letters Inviting Benhabib to Speak at Various Events
1, Folder 8Letters to and from Benhabib about Publication of Articles and Books

Series 2. Early Academics

1, Folder 9Notebook for "History of Ideas" at Brandeis
c. 1970
1, Folder 10Notebook for "MacIntyre: Ideology and the Explanation of Relief" Brandeis
1, Folder 11Undergraduate and Graduate Papers by Benhabib
1, Folder 12"Civil Society and the State in Hegel's Philosophy of Right and Marx's Critique" by Benhabib
1, Folder 13"'Man' vs. 'Men' in the Wake of the French Revolution" by Benhabib
1, Folder 14"Nomocracy and the Social Order: An Essay in Frederick A. Hayek's Social and Political Thought" by Benhabib
1, Folder 15Notebooks and Papers from Philosophy 205: "Idealism and Pragmatism" and "Copernican Revolution" by Benhabib

Series 3. Writings

1, Folder 16"The Tragedy of former Yugoslavia and the Fragility of the Post-Communist World" by Seyla Benhabib
c. 1995
1, Folder 173rd Draft of "From Identity Politics to Social Feminism: A Plea for the Nineties" by Benhabib
1995 May 14
1, Folder 18"Sexual Difference and Collective Identities" Draft for Signs by Benhabib
1, Folder 19"The Tragedy of Former Yugoslavia and the Fragility of the Post-Communist World" by Benhabib
1, Folder 20Early Papers by Benhabib
1, Folder 21Anthology: Virtual Gender - "Sexual Difference and Collective Identities" by Benhabib
1, Folder 22Benhabib's Review of Between Friends for The Nation

Series 4. Course Materials

1, Folder 23"Hannah Arendt's Social and Political Philosophy and Feminist Thought"
1, Folder 24Course Evaluations for Benhabib's Moral Reasoning 50
1, Folder 25"Contemporary Feminist Theory: Reconceptualizing the Self and the Citizen"
c. 1995
1, Folder 26"Philosophy and Feminism" and "Political Theory and the Public Sphere"
c. 1995-1997
1, Folder 27Course Evaluations for Benhabib's Moral Reasoning 50
1, Folder 28Harvard - Syllabus and Reading List for "Women and the Law" and Government 90kc
1, Folder 29Yale - Course Evaluations - "Political Thought from Weber to Derrida"
1, Folder 30Syllabus and Reading List for "Liberalism, Gender, and Multiculturalism"

Series 5. Writings by Others

1, Folder 31Articles by Iris Young, Martha Nussbaum, and Susan Moller Okin

Series 6. Committees

2, Folder 1Development of Committee on Gender Studies and Feminist Theory
2, Folder 2Committee on the Status of the Women - Reports, Correspondence, Surveys
2, Folder 3Steering Committee on Women - Newspaper Articles and Reports on Status of Women at Harvard
2, Folder 4Invitation and Correspondence about Committee on the Status of Women
2, Folder 5Report by the Committee on the Standing of Women and Correspondence on this Issue
2, Folder 6Committee on the Status of Women - Reports, Surveys, Correspondence, and Newsclippings
2, Folder 7University Committee on the Status of Women - Faculty Survey and Materials
2, Folder 8Committee on the Status of Women - Correspondence
2, Folder 9Committee on Degrees of Women's Studies
2, Folder 10Preliminary Report of the Standing committee on Women of the Faculty of the Arts and Sciences
1996 May
2, Folder 11Committee on the Degrees of Social Studies - Memos, Handbook, and Course Listing
2, Folder 12Committee on Degrees in Social Studies and Standing Committee on Social Studies
2, Folder 13Committee on Degrees in Social Studies Materials
2, Folder 14Social Studies - Undergraduates
2, Folder 15Committee on the Degrees of Social Studies - Correspondence
2, Folder 16Committee on the Degrees of Social Studies: Anthropology, Government, History Correspondence
2, Folder 17Protest Materials Related to Bonnie Honig's Tenure Denial at Harvard
2, Folder 18Women Faculty Forum: Surveys and Reports
2, Folder 19Women Faculty Forum: Briefing Books for Meeting on Retention and Promotion of Junior Faculty
2004 Jun 16
2, Folder 20Women Faculty Forum: Materials to Develop Agenda

Series 7. Professional

3, Folder 1National Endowment for the Humanities Application
1985 Nov
3, Folder 2Benhabib's Curriculum Vitae
3, Folder 3Newsclippings about Benhabib or Issues Related to Benhabib

Series 8. Conferences

3, Folder 4Conferences Attended or Presented At by Benhabib (some papers included)
3, Folder 5Publicity Materials for Talks or Conferences Presented at by Benhabib
3, Folder 6Materials from Conferences Presented at by Benhabib
3, Folder 7Humanities Institute
3, Folder 8Conferences Attended by and Spoken at by Benhabib (some papers included) (1 of 2)
3, Folder 9Conferences Attended by and Spoken at by Benhabib (some papers included) (2 of 2)
3, Folder 10Conferences Attended by and Spoken at by Benhabib (some papers included) (1 of 2)
3, Folder 11Conferences Attended by and Spoken at by Benhabib (some papers included) (2 of 2)
3, Folder 12"Gender, Politik, Wissenschaft" Conference, Berlin, Germany (Includes Benhabib lecture)
2001 May 11-13
3, Folder 13Invitations to and Information Conferences at which Benhabib Presented - Europe and US
3RESTRICTED: Recommendations, Confidential Correspondence
3RESTRICTED: Recommendations, Confidential Correspondence, including Marc Busch
3RESTRICTED: Leo-Strauss Award
3RESTRICTED: Garepra Ekiert Letters
3RESTRICTED: Social Studies Materials