Edward Baring

Associate Professor of History and Human Values
Office Phone
214 Dickinson Hall
Office Hours
Monday: 1:20 pm-2:30 pm
Thursday: 11:00 am-12:00 pm

Edward Baring is an intellectual historian specializing in twentieth-century Europe. He earned his BA in Mathematics and History at the University of Cambridge, and his PhD at Harvard University. Before coming to Princeton, he taught for a decade at Drew University. Baring has held fellowships from the National Endowment of the Humanities, the ACLS, and the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation. At Princeton he holds a joint appointment with the University Center for Human Values.

Previous and Current Projects

Professor Baring’s first book, The Young Derrida and French Philosophy, 1945-1968 (2011) examines the early career of Jacques Derrida, paying particular attention to the academic institutions of mid-century Paris that put him in conversation with a range of political and theological ideas. The book was awarded the Morris D. Forkosch Prize by the Journal of the History of Ideas. With Peter E. Gordon, he edited The Trace of God: Derrida and Religion (2014). His second monograph, Converts to the Real: Catholicism and the Making of Continental Philosophy, appeared in 2019, and traces the international success of phenomenology in the middle decades of the twentieth century. Baring is currently working on a transnational history of Marxism, by focusing on the oft-repeated but vexed rejection of “vulgar” thinking. For a recent interview on his research, see the jhiblog.

Teaching Interests

Baring teaches courses on European and transnational intellectual history in the modern period.

Selected Articles

“Existentialism and the Meaning of Transcendence,” in Peter Gordon and Warren Breckman eds., The Cambridge History of Modern European Thought (Cambridge, 2019).

“Derrida and Levinas,” in Michael Morgan ed., The Oxford Handbook of Emmanuel Levinas (Oxford, 2019).

“Ideas on the Move: Context in Transnational Intellectual History,” Journal of the History of Ideas (October 2016).

“A Secular Kierkegaard: Confessional Readings of Heidegger before 1945,” in New German Critique (February 2015).

“Ne me raconte plus d’histoires: Derrida and the Problem of the History of Philosophy,” History and Theory (May 2014).

“Derrida, Lévi-Strauss, and the Cercle d’Epistémologie; or, How to be a Good Structuralist,” in Knox Peden and Peter Hallward eds., Concept and Form: The Cahiers pour l'analyse and Contemporary French Thought, vol. 2 (Verso, 2012).

“Liberalism and the Algerian War: The Case of Jacques Derrida,” Critical Inquiry (Winter 2010).

Photo courtesy of Edward G. Baring

Area of Interest
(In alphabetical order)
Cultural History
Intellectual History
Theory of History
Home Department & Other Affiliations
20th Century