Bruce Robbins

Bruce Robbins is the Old Dominion Foundation Professor in the Humanities at Columbia. His books include Cosmopolitanisms, co-edited with Paulo Horta, and The Beneficiary.

From The Blog
22 April 2024

It’s the first time the police have been invited onto Columbia’s campus since 1968. Like 1968, 2024 may go down as an inauspicious year for university administrations trying to defend the indefensible.

Martial Art: Pierre Bourdieu

Bruce Robbins, 20 April 2006

A recent French documentary about Pierre Bourdieu is entitled, after one of his own pronouncements: La Sociologie est un sport de combat. When he died in January 2002, Bourdieu was widely considered France’s leading sociologist, its most influential intellectual – and one of its angriest men. In an autobiographical fragment published within days of his death (now available as a...

No Escape: culture

Bruce Robbins, 1 November 2001

Why are some nations so poor and others so rich? Two Harvard professors recently revived an old-fashioned answer to this unsettling question, and it sits plainly as the title of their book: ‘Culture Matters.’ Anyone who has ever agreed with them that culture does indeed matter will want to look at what they take this statement to mean. Adding so-called ‘Asian values’...

Dive In! Hegelian reflections

Bruce Robbins, 2 November 2000

In 1987, three years before Gender Trouble made her the most famous feminist philosopher in the United States, Judith Butler published a book on Hegel’s dialectic of lordship and bondage and its impact on 20th-century French thought. The book had nothing to say about bondage in the recreational sense and, aside from a few pages at the end about Julia Kristeva and Simone de Beauvoir, was...

Situations Vacant

Dinah Birch, 20 October 1994

It must be many years since any girl spoke of going into service. The language of labour has changed. Farm workers are now described as full-time agricultural technicians; kitchen maids have...

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