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John Ehrenberg

John Ehrenberg

Chair, Political Science DepartmentSenior Professor of Political Science

B.A., Dartmouth CollegeM.A., Ph.D., Stanford University


Professor Ehrenberg, whose research focuses on political ideologies and the history of political thought, has devoted a lifetime of teaching, scholarship and activism to deepening the content of democracy. He has written extensively on the theory of the state, democratic revolutions, socialist theory and the political implications of intensifying American inequality. His courses include Classical and Modern Political Theory, American Political Thought, Marxism, Inequality and Democracy, The Politics of the Civil Rights Movement, and many others. He is working on a book exploring the structural and ideological changes that have accompanied the last 30 years of intensifying American economic inequality.

Professor Ehrenberg’s previous books have included The Iraq Papers, published in 2010 and co-edited with LIU Brooklyn faculty members J. Patrice McSherry and José Rámόn Sánchez and Connecticut College faculty member Caroleen Marji Sayej; Servants of Wealth: The Right’s Assault on Economic Justice, published in 2006; and Civil Society: The Critical History of an Idea, published in 1999. For the latter book, he received the Michael J. Harrington Prize of the Caucus for a New Political Science of the American Political Science Association for the Best Book of 1999; the book has been translated into several other languages. In addition to these and other books, Professor Ehrenberg has written many articles in professional journals, made frequent appearances as a commentator on radio and television; and presented his research at numerous national and international scholarly meetings for many years.

Professor Ehrenberg has received the Trustees Award for Scholarly Achievement; the David Newton Award for Excellence in Teaching from LIU; and the Alfred McCoy Award for Lifetime Achievement from the American Political Science Association’s Caucus for a New Political Science. His many positions at LIU Brooklyn have included chair of the Political Science Department and chair of the Faculty Senate. He serves on the editorial boards of Science & Society and New Political Science.


History of Political Thought, Marxism, Contemporary Political Ideologies, Democratic Theory


  •  "Civil Society" in Bloomsbury Handbook to Literary and Social Theory (Forthcoming 2018)
  • "What is to be learned from Occupy's Failure?" published in Palgrave Communications 3: 17062 (April 2017)
  • Co-editor with Yoav Peled, Israel and Palestine: Alternate Perspectives on Statehood (2016)
  • Civil Society: The Critical History of an Idea. 2nd ed. (2016, 1st. ed. 1999)
  • “The History of Civil Society Ideas and Theories,” published in The Oxford Handbook of Civil Society (2011)
  • “Left Matters: An Interview with Cornel West,” published in New Political Science (2011)
  • Co-editor with J. Patrice McSherry, José Ramón Sánchez and Caroleen Marji Sayej, The Iraq Papers (2010)
  • Servants of Wealth: The Right’s Assault on Economic Justice (2006)
  • “Black Gold: Mining Racial Fear in the Service of Wealth,” published in Logos (2006)
  • “Equality, Democracy and Community from Tocqueville to Putnam” published in Robert Putnam and Social Capital: Critical Perspectives on American Democracy and Social Engagement (2002)
  • “Civil Society and its Discontents,” published in Working Papers in Local Governance and Democracy (1999)
  • Proudhon and His Age (1996)
  • “Class Politics and the State: Lenin and the Contradictions of Socialism,” published in Science and Society (1995)
  • The Dictatorship of the Proletariat: Marxism's Theory of Socialist Democracy (1992)


  • Recipient, Michael J. Harrington Prize of the Caucus for a New Political Science of the American Political Science Association for the Best Book of 1999
  • Recipient, Alfred McCoy Award for Lifetime Achievement, Caucus for a New Political Science (2008)
  • Recipient, Trustees Award for Scholarly Achievement, Long Island University (1994)
  • Recipient, David Newton Award for Excellence in Teach¬ing, Long Island University (1990)

Professional Affiliations

  • Member, American Political Science Association
  • Editorial Board Member, New Political Science and Science & Society