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The John M. Olin Center for Inquiry into the Theory and Practice of Democracy

Nathan Tarcov

Curriculum Vitae

  • Home: 1048 South Plymouth Court, Chicago, IL 60605

  • Home Phone: 312-939-1461

  • Offices:

  • Office Phone: [Olin Center] 773-702-3423
  • Office Phone: [Committee on Social Thought] 773-702-8064

  • Email: n-tarcov@uchicago.edu


    B.A. Cornell University, June 1968
    Ph.D. Harvard University, November 1975

    Academic Awards and Fellowships

    Toppan Prize (best political science dissertation), Harvard, 1976
    Research Fellowship for Recent Recipients of the Ph.D., American Council of Learned Societies 1977
    Earhart Foundation Fellowship Research Grant 1986
    Secretary of the Navy Senior Research Fellow, Naval War College, 1987-1988
    Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, University of Chicago, 1997

    Academic Positions

    Professor, Social Thought, Political Science, and the College, University of Chicago, 1992-Current

    Associate Professor, Political Science and the College, University of Chicago, 1981-1992; Social Thought 1990-1992

    Assistant Professor, Political Science and the College, University of Chicago, 1978-1981

    Assistant Professor, Government, Harvard University, 1975-1977

    Instructor, Government, Harvard University, 1974-1975

    Government Position

    Member, Policy Planning Staff, Department of State (speech-writing; East-West and Middle East policy) April 1981-June 1982

    Administrative Positions

    John M. Olin Center for Inquiry into the Theory and Practice of Democracy, Co-Director, 1983-1992, Director, 1992-Current

    Committee on Social Thought, Co-Chair January 1992-June 1994, Chair July 1997-June 1998


    Locke's Education for Liberty (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1984; paperback edition, 1989); Spanish language edition, Locke y la Educatión para la Libertad, trans. by Cristina Piña (Buenos Aires: Grupo Editor Latinoamericano S.R.L., 1991); Chinese language edition, trans. by Ronald Teng (China: Oxford University Press, forthcoming)

    Machiavelli's Discourses on Livy, trans. with notes and introduction by Harvey C. Mansfield and Nathan Tarcov (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996)

    John Locke's Some Thoughts Concerning Education and On The Conduct of the Understanding, ed. with Ruth Grant (Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Co., 1996)

    The Legacy of Rousseau, ed. with Clifford Orwin (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996)

    Meanings of Revolution, ed. with François Furet (forthcoming)

    Other Publications

    "The Last Four Years at Cornell," in Public Interest 13 (1968): 122-138

    "Locke's Second Treatise and 'The Best Fence Against Rebellion,'" in Review of Politics 43 (1981): 198-217

    "Political Thought in Early Modern Europe II: The Age of Reformation" (review article on Quentin Skinner's The Foundations of Modern Political Thought, in volume II), Journal of Modern History 54 (1982): 56-65

    "Quentin Skinner's Method and Machiavelli's Prince," in Ethics 92 (1982): 692-709

    "Liberalism, Conservatism, and Contemporary American Foreign Policy," a reply to Marshall Cohen, in Symposium: Toward a Liberal Foreign Policy, University of Maryland Center for Philosophy and Public Policy, working Paper LI-1, March 1983

    "Philosophy and History: Tradition and Interpretation in the Work of Leo Strauss," in Polity 16 (Fall 1983): 5-29

    "A Non-Lockean' Locke and the Character of Liberalism," in Liberalism Reconsidered, ed. Douglas MacLean and Claudia Mills, Maryland Studies in Public Philosophy (Totowa, N.J.: Rowman and Allanheld, 1983)

    "Principle and Prudence in Foreign Policy: The Founders' Perspective," in The Public Interest 76 (1984): 45-60

    "American Constitutionalism and Individual Rights," in How Does the Constitution Secure Rights?, ed. Robert Goldwin and William Schambra (Washington: American Enterprise Institute, 1985)

    "Terrorism: What Should We Do?," in This World 12 (1985): 63-66

    "Federalists and Anti-Federalists on Foreign Affairs," in Teaching Political Science: Perspectives on Politics 14 (1986): 38-45

    "Popular Sovereignty," in Encyclopedia of the American Constitution, ed. Leonard Levy and Kenneth L. Karst (New York: Macmillan, 1986)

    "An Epilogue: Leo Strauss and the History of Political Philosophy," with Thomas L. Pangle, in History of Political Philosophy, 3rd ed., ed. Leo Strauss and Joseph Cropsey (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987)

    "The Spirit of Liberty and Early American Foreign Policy," in Understanding the Political Spirit: Philosophical Investigations from Socrates to Nietzsche, ed. Catherine Zuckert (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1988)

    "If This Long War is Over," in The National Interest 18 (1989): 50-53

    "Principle, Prudence, and the Constitutional Division of Foreign Policy," in Foreign Policy and the Constitution, ed. Robert Goldwin and Robert Licht (Washington: American Enterprise Institute, 1990)

    "The Social Theory of the Founders," in Confronting the Constitution, ed. Allan Bloom (Washington: American Enterprise Institute, 1990)

    "War and Peace in The Federalist," in Political Science Reviewer, 19 (Spring 1990):87-106

    "On a Certain Critique of 'Straussianism'" in Review of Politics 53 (1991): 3-18

    "John Locke" in Encyclopedia of Democracy, ed. Seymour Martin Lipset (Washington: Congressional Quarterly Press, 1995)

    "The Meanings of Democracy" in Democracy, Education, and the Schools, ed. Roger Soder (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1995)

    "John Locke and the Foundations of Toleration," in Early Modern Skepticism and the Origins of Toleration, ed. Alan Levine (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 1999)

    "Public Intellectuals and Graduate Education" in Minnesota Review 50:1 (1999)

    "Machiavelli and the Foundations of Modernity," in American Constitutionalism and Political Philosophy ed. Mark Blitz and William Kristol, forthcoming

    "Meanings of Revolution, Ancient and Modern," in Meanings of Revolution, ed. François Furet and Nathan Tarcov, forthcoming

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