Benjamin Franklin Professor Emeritus of Social Thought and in the College

Office: Harper West Tower 603
Phone: (773) 702-7933

Mailing Address

The University of Chicago
1116 East 59th St.
Chicago, IL 60637

About

Ralph Lerner attended public school in Chicago, received his degrees in political science at the University of Chicago, and had a year of post-graduate study of medieval Hebrew at the University of Cambridge. He has served in the U.S. Army. All of his teaching has been at the University of Chicago, apart from visiting appointments at Stanford, Cornell, and Harvard universities and a visiting lectureship at the Institut Raymond Aron. He has received fellowship awards from the Rockefeller Foundation and the National Humanities Center. He has received a Quantrell Award for excellence in undergraduate teaching.

His books include The Founders’ Constitution (co-edited with Philip B. Kurland), The Thinking Revolutionary: Principle and Practice in the New RepublicRevolutions Revisited: Two Faces of the Politics of Enlightenment, and Maimonides’ Empire of Light: Popular Enlightenment in an Age of Belief.  He is the author, most recently, of Naïve Readings: Reveilles Political and Philosophic.

Selected Publications

Playing the Fool: Subversive Laughter in Troubled Times (2009)

Maimonides' Empire of Light: Popular Enlightenment in an Age of Belief (2000)

Revolutions Revisited: Two Faces of the Politics of Enlightenment (1994)

The Thinking Revolutionary: Principle and Practice in the New Republic (1987)

The Founders' Constitution, ed. with Philip B. Kurland (1987)

Averroes on Plato's "Republic," tr. (1974)

Medieval Political Philosophy: A Sourcebook, ed. with Mushin Mahdi (1963)