B.A., York University
M.T.S., M.A., and Ph.D, Harvard University
Nancy Levene is a scholar of Western modernity as it is understood in a variety of sources – philosophical, literary, theological, political, and psychoanalytic. Her essays have concerned periodization and canon, history and origins, the concept of the West and the Bible, and questions of knowledge, truth, and critique. Her first book, Spinoza’s Revelation: Religion, Democracy, and Reason (Cambridge, 2004), takes up Spinoza’s contribution to a history of human power, in which religion is one of the signal issues, both obstacle and resource. Her forthcoming book, Powers of Distinction: On Religion and Modernity, is a wide-ranging critique of the West in light of modernity’s elementary forms, retrieved to show what might come of handling distinction in ethical terms. She is currently at work on a project that considers the motif of the end of metaphysics as an occasion to ask what philosophy is for and what thinking more generally asks of readers, citizens, and societies. Professor Levene serves on the editorial board of the Social Science Research Council blog on secularism, religion, and the public sphere, The Immanent Frame, and has recently co-authored a new doctoral field in religion and modernity, both of which deploy religion as a site of multidisciplinary energy. Her courses at Yale are on topics in the study of religion and modernity, from readings of particular thinkers and themes to the evaluation of dominant narratives and frameworks.