JHI Issue 84.1 Now Available


JHI Issue 83.4 Now Available


Announcing the JHI’s 2021 Morris D. Forkosch Book Prize Winner

Every year, the Journal of the History of Ideas awards the Morris D. Forkosch Prize for the best first book in intellectual history. 

The winner of the 2021 prize is Ross Carroll, for Uncivil Mirth: Ridicule in Enlightenment Britain, published by Princeton University Press.

The judging committee writes:

In his compelling and cogent Uncivil Mirth: Ridicule in Enlightenment Britain, Ross Carroll provides a striking historical analysis of debates over the political power and moral force of humor. Across a range of source materials, with insightful close readings balanced by sensitive contextualization, Carroll’s history draws out the potentialities attributed to ridicule. Carroll points to a framework for understanding the historical affordances of ridicule that remains resonant in the present day, contrasting Hobbesian reproofs with the measured embrace associated with Shaftesbury. His analysis and framework is refined not only through analytical readings of Hobbes, Shaftesbury, and later British, and particularly Scottish, writers, including Hume, Adam Smith, and the Aberdeen philosophers George Campbell, Thomas Reid, James Oswald, and James Beattie. It extends to Scottish abolitionist ridicule of slaveowners, inspired by Montesquieu, together with admonitions against the use of ridicule by slaves and those freed. In its final historical chapter, Uncivil Mirth carries this analysis through eighteenth-century education and conduct manuals to the writings of Mary Wollstonecraft and her proposal that girls be taught to ridicule writings predicated on a vision of women as subordinate. By repeatedly correcting scholarly misreadings and simplifications of the place of ridicule in political and moral thought, Carroll not only succeeds in offering novel and insightful readings of canonical texts, he also points to the need to rethink the place of ridicule in and beyond the political thought of Enlightenment Britain.

Ross Carroll is a senior lecturer in Political Theory at University of Exeter. His teaching and research are primarily focused on the history of early modern political thought.


Chat with the Editors of the JHI

The executive editors of the Journal of the History of Ideas will hold an informative discussion and Q&A session on Friday, September 9 at 12:00 pm Eastern on Zoom.

The editors will discuss what the journal is seeking, how to submit your work, and what to expect along the way.

Bring any questions about the JHI specifically or scholarly journal publishing more broadly.

Come one, come all! We look forward to a lively discussion!

Please register in advance here.


JHI Issue 83.3 Now Available

The new issue of the Journal of the History of Ideas (July 2022, 83.3) is now live on Project MUSE.

Over the coming weeks, we will publish short interviews with some of the authors featured in this issue about the historical and historiographical context of their respective essays. Look out for these conversations under the rubric Broadly Speaking.


Giorgio Lizzul, Liberality as a Fiscal Problem in Medieval and Renaissance Thought: A Genealogy from Aristotle’s Tyrant to Machiavelli’s Prince

Daniel Blank, Debating Drama in the Early Modern University: John Case, Aristotle’s Politics, and a Previously Unknown Oxford Disputation

Max Skjönsberg, Charles Francis Sheridan on the Feudal Origins and Political Science of the 1772 Revolution in Sweden

Edgardo Pérez Morales, The Neapolitan Enlightenment and the Conceptual Challenges of Antislavery Legislation in Colombia (Open Access!)

Andrew McKenzie-McHarg, From Status Politics to the Paranoid Style: Richard Hofstadter and the Pitfalls of Psychologizing History

Sarah Shurts, Identity, Immigration, and Islam: Neo-reactionary and New-Right Perceptions and Prescriptions

Steven Nadler, The Many Lives of René Descartes

Books Received (Open Access!)


JHIBlog Symposium 2022: Ideas in/about Interaction

The symposium will occur in two parts. On June 4, we’ll gather for a series of one-hour long panel discussions/workshops throughout the day. There will be a 15 minute break after the first panel and a 45 minute break after the second one. All of the panelists will convene on June 11 for a follow-up discussion.


Saturday, June 4, 2022

Panel 1: Authorship in Question

07:00 PDT / 10:00 EDT / 15:00 BST / 19:30 IST (1 Hour)

Discussant: Manan Ahmed, Columbia University
Chair: Shuvatri Dasgupta, University of Cambridge

Juan Carlos G Mantilla, Columbia University: Inventing Indio, Becoming Author: Theories of Indigenous Authorship in the Early Modern Andes

Manaswini Sen, University of Hyderabad: The Most Potent Tool of Agitprop?  Pamphleting, Working-Class Mobilization, and Intellectual History from Below: A Case Study of Trade Unionism in Late colonial Bengal (1920-47)

Kentaro Inagaki, University of Copenhagen: Levinus Warner (d. 1665) and unsung amanuenses: Early modern oriental scholarship from the viewpoint of Ottoman assistants

Panel 2: Genres of Collaboration

08:15 PDT / 11:15 EDT / 16:15 BST / 20:45 IST (1 Hour)

Discussant: Nasser Zakariya, UC Berkeley
Chair: Tom Furse, City, University of London

Joslyn DeVinney, Columbia University: Authorship in Translation: An 18th-century Persian Medical Manual

Fyza Parviz Jazra, Stanford University: The Myth of the Lone European Astronomer in the Near East: John Greaves’s interactions with the local Arab Astronomers

Anish Gawande, University of Oxford: Contested Creations: Invention and Innovation Within the Mushaira

Panel 3: Rethinking Archives

10:00 PST / 13:00 EDT / 18:00 BST / 22:30 IST (1 Hour)

Discussant: Sophie Smith, University of Oxford
Chair: Isabel Jacobs, Queen Mary, University of London

Kelvin Ng, Yale University: Itineraries of Self-Respect: Oceanic Migration, Intellectual Labor and Anti-Caste Reform, 1929–1940

Zachary Desjardins-Mooney, Columbia University: “For Seeing, so as Not to Have to Talk About Them”: On “Wander Lines” and the Presuppositions of Intellectual History

Edoardo Vaccari, London School of Economics: Heretic Socialism: Collaborative Authorship in the Antifascist Journal ‘Quaderni di Giustizia e Liberta’ (1932-1935)

Saturday, June 11

07:00 PDT / 10:00 EDT / 15:00 BST / 19:30 IST

Follow-up discussion for all panels


Please register using the link below:

Please submit any questions to:

Featured Image: 18th century illustration of different phases of the moon, from the manuscripts of the Kitab al-Tafhim by Al-Biruni