Modern European Philosophy, Aesthetics, Phenomenology, Hermeneutics 


Kristin Gjesdal received her Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Oslo. Her scholarship covers philosophy of interpretation (hermeneutics), phenomenology, nineteenth-century philosophy (incl. women philosophers in this period), and aesthetics. Her Gadamer and the Legacy of German Idealism (CUP 2009) represents a critical discussion of twentieth-century hermeneutics. This perspective is given a positive twist in Herder’s Hermeneutics (CUP 2017), which retrieves a more promising, pre-Kantian line of hermeneutic thought. Her work in aesthetics centers on historical and systematic issues in philosophy of art, with a particular focus on drama and sculpture. The Drama of History: Ibsen, Hegel, Nietzsche (OUP 2020) investigates the unique and fertile dialogue between philosophy and drama in the Nineteenth Century. Her short monograph on Germaine de Staël's philosophy is under contract with Cambridge University Press (Cambridge Elements).

Kristin Gjesdal is currently working on two book-length projects: The first, preliminary entitled “Unruly Women: Romantics, Feminists, Revolutionaries,” explores social and political philosophy from Germaine de Staël to Rosa Luxemburg. The second, “The Imperative of Interpretation: Herder, Schleiermacher, Staël,” studies the development of a critical lineage in hermeneutics from the point of view of concrete political and cultural challenges in post-revolutionary Europe.

Kristin Gjesdal has held a Professorial Fellowship in philosophy at the University of Oslo (2014-2018), as well as fellowships from the Fulbright Foundation (at the University of Chicago) and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin). She has been a visiting scholar in the Philosophy Departments at Columbia University and the Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt. She is an area editor of Nineteenth-Century Philosophy for the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, and on the editorial boards of European Journal of Philosophy, Journal of Transcendental Philosophy, Kritik & Klasse (Denmark), and the book series Cultura della Modernità (Edizioni ETS, Pisa). She is a member of The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters. Kristin Gjesdal has been awarded The Eleanor Hofkin Award for Excellence in Teaching from The College of Liberal Arts at Temple, Alumni Board.

This interview offers an introduction to her work and philosophical interests.

Website | Curriculum Vitae

Selected Publications


Edited and Co-edited Volumes

Courses Taught

  • Nineteenth-Century Philosophy (Marx and Nietzsche)
  • German Idealism
  • Kant
  • Hegel
  • Social and Political Philosophy
  • Unruly Women: Romantics, Marxists, Feminists 
  • Phenomenology; Hermeneutics
  • Aesthetics; Philosophy of Art; Philosophy of Literature