Steven Nadler

Position title: Director of the Institute for the Research in the Humanities; William H. Hay II Professor of Philosophy


Phone: (608) 262.8151

215 University Club
Virtual Office Hours: By appointment.


Curriculum Vitae

Additional Titles
Evjue-Bascom Professor in Humanities; Weinstein-Bascom Professor of Jewish Studies

B.A. Washington University, 1980
M.A. Columbia University, 1981
Ph.D. Columbia University, 1986

Research Interests
Philosophy in the seventeenth century, mainly Descartes and Cartesianism, Spinoza, and Leibniz. Some of his research has focused on early modern Dutch and Netherlandish art and culture.

Prof. Steven Nadler has been teaching at the University of Wisconsin-Madison since 1988. He has been a Senior Fellow at the IRH (2013–2017), and twice a Resident Fellow. He was the founding director of the Center for the Humanities and has served as director of the Mosse-Weinstein Center for Jewish Studies and chair of the Department of Philosophy. He has held visiting appointments at Stanford University, the University of Chicago, the University of Amsterdam, the École Pratique des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (Paris), and the École Normal Supérieure (Paris).

Think Least of All of Death: Spinoza as Moral Philosopher (Princeton: Princeton University Press, forthcoming).

Menasseh ben Israel: Rabbi of Amsterdam (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2018).

Heretics!: The Wondrous (and Dangerous) Beginnings of Modern Philosophy, co-authored with Ben Nadler (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2017).

The Philosopher, the Priest, and the Painter: A Portrait of Descartes (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2013).

A Book Forged in Hell: Spinoza’s Scandalous Treatise and the Birth of the Secular Age (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2011).

Rembrandt’s Jews (Chicago: Chicago University Press, 2003). [named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize]

Spinoza: A Life (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999; 2d ed., 2018). [winner of the Koret Jewish Book Award]

PHILOS 101: Introduction to Philosophy
PHILOS 104: Good, Beauty, and the Meaning of Life
PHILOS 432: History of Modern Philosophy
PHILOS 435: Jewish Philosophy from Antiquity through the Seventeenth Century