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 Dr Avi Lifschitz

Senior Lecturer in European History

Office: 114, 26 Gordon Square
Office hour: by appointment

External phone: 020 7679 2075
Internal phone: 32075
E-mail: avi.lifschitz [at] ucl.ac.uk

2014/15: Research Fellow at the Lichtenberg-Kolleg, the Göttingen Institute for Advanced Study


My broad area of interest is the intellectual history of Europe in the long eighteenth century (c. 1680-1830). I am particularly interested in the links between Enlightenment anthropology, theology, and political theory.

Another significant aspect of my research concerns translation and cross-cultural transfer, especially between France and different German states. I am also interested in the history of universities, royal academies, and exiled intellectuals in the eighteenth century.

Among my courses are the full-year survey ‘Enlightenment and Revolution’ and more specialised BA and MA options on eighteenth-century anthropology and early modern theories of language. Additionally, I am co-covnenor of the History of Political Ideas seminar at the Institute of Historical Research and of the London Summer School in Intellectual History. Research fellowships included the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (2012/13) and the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library at UCLA (2007).

Areas of Research Supervision:

The Enlightenment; eighteenth-century intellectual and cultural history, especially in Germany and France; language and translation; history of academies and universities.

Select Publications

- Language and Enlightenment: The Berlin Debates of the Eighteenth Century (Oxford University Press, 2012) 

Epicurus in the Enlightenment, co-edited with Neven Leddy (Voltaire Foundation, 2009)

- 'The Arbitrariness of the Linguistic Sign: Variations on an Enlightenment Theme', Journal of the History of Ideas 73.4 (2012), 537-557

- 'Language as a Means and an Obstacle to Freedom: The Case of Moses Mendelssohn', in Freedom and the Construction of Europe, eds. Quentin Skinner and Martin van Gelderen (Cambridge University Press, 2013), vol. 2, 84-102

Language and Enlightenment (2012) Epicurus in the Enlightenment (2009)

Page last modified on 04 jul 14 12:20 by Avi S Lifschitz