Academic staff – University of Copenhagen

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Lars Tønder

Lars Tønder

Associate Professor

Member of:

  • Political Theory

Lars Tønder is a political theorist with a special interest in early modern political thought, contemporary political theory, and democratic theory. He is co-director of Centre for Anthropological, Political and Social Theory (CAPS), and a member of the Politcal Theory Research Group and the Emotions and Public Affairs network. He is also the subject coordinator ("fagkoordinator") for the department's course offerings in Political Theory and Sociology.

The main purpose of Lars Tønder's research is to contribute to what is called the “sensorial turn,” i.e., an approach to politics in the social sciences and in the humanities more broadly that foregrounds affect, perception, and other registers of embodied experience in order to explain how conflict and coexistence are both structured by and exceed their place within social institutions and political regimes. The bulk of Lars' published works examine this process in a manner directly relevant to debates about tolerance, free speech, pluralism, and democratic culture. His book Tolerance: A Sensorial Orientation to Politics was published with Oxford University Press.

Prior to his appointment at the University of Copenhagen, Lars Tønder held positions at The University of Melbourne and Northwestern University. He has twice been a visiting fellow at the École Normale Supérieure Lettres et Sciences Humaines, Lyon, and once at the Alice Kaplan Institute for the Humanities at Northwestern University. He is the recipient of the 2007 American Political Science Association Leo Strauss Prize for best dissertation in political philosophy, and the 2016 Teaching Award, Department of Political Science, University of Copenhagen.

Lars Tønder serves on the Editorial Board of two journals: Theory & Event and Politics and Religion. He was the Foundations of Political Theory program co-chair for the 2016 American Political Science Asssociation convention. He is regularly asked to review manuscripts for journals such as Political Theory, Contemporary Political Theory, American Political Science Review as well as Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press, and University of Chicago Press.

Selected publications

  1. Published

    Political Theory and the Sensorium

    Tønder, L. 1 Jul 2015 In : Political Theory.

    Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article

  2. Published

    What is important in theorizing tolerance today?

    Brown, W., Dobbernack, J., Modood, T., Newey, G., March, A. F., Tønder, L. & Forst, R. Apr 2015 In : Contemporary Political Theory. 14, 2, p. 159-196 4

    Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article

  3. Published

    Comic Rules: Kierkegaard, "The Idiots," and the Politics of Dogma 95

    Tønder, L. Apr 2015 In : Theory & Event. 18, 2

    Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article

  4. Published

    Comic Power: Another Road Not Taken?

    Tønder, L. Dec 2014 In : Theory & Event. 17, 4

    Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article

  5. Published

    Spinoza and the Theory of Active Tolerance

    Tønder, L. Oct 2013 In : Political Theory. 41, 5, p. 687-709 1

    Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article

  6. Published

    Tolerance: A Sensorial Orientation to Politics

    Tønder, L. 2013 N.Y.: Oxford University Press.

    Publication: Research - peer-reviewBook

  7. Published

    Freedom of Expression in an Age of Cartoon Wars

    Tønder, L. 2011 In : Contemporary Political Theory. 10, 2, p. 255-272 17 p.

    Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article

  8. Published

    Radical Democracy: Politics between Abundance and Lack

    Tønder, L. (ed.) & Thomassen, L. (ed.) 2005 Manchester: Manchester University Press.

    Publication: Research - peer-reviewAnthology

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