John Zumbrunnen – Professor of Political Science, University of Wisconsin Madison and Director, American Democracy Forum


John Zumbrunnen has wide-ranging interests in the history of political thought, democratic theory, American political thought, and the philosophy of social science. Much of Zumbrunnen’s published scholarship works at the intersection of Greek political thought and contemporary democratic theory, seeking in particular to recover ancient texts as resources for our thinking about the place and potential of ordinary citizens in mass democracy. In addition to this ongoing interest in the Greeks, he is currently at work on a projection on education, self-education and democracy in American poltiical thought. Zumbrunnen’s first book, Silence and Democracy: Athenian Politics in Thucydides’ History, was published by Penn State University Press in May 2008. His second book, Aristophanic Comedy and the Challenge of Democratic Citizenship was published by the University of Rochester Press/Boydell & Brewer in 2012. His work has appeared in The American Political Science Review, Political Theory, Polity, History of Political Thought and Political Behavior as well as in various edited volumes. Zumbrunnen also directs the American Democracy Forum, a program that aims to encourage conversations about the founding principles of American political thought and the place of those principles in the ongoing practice of American democracy.

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