Hire a Yale PhD

Below is an alphabetical list of Yale Ph.D. students and recent graduates currently on the job market. Please feel free to contact them, their advisors, or the DGS for additional information. 

Any Yale Graduate Student wishing to be added to this page can do so by filling out our Hire a Yale PhD submission form.

(Please note that information on this page will be removed once a year, every June 01.  You can resubmit or alter your information at any time via the link above.)


Mie Inouye Political Theory, Social Movements, Black Political Thought, American Political Thought, History of Political Thought, Theories of Political Action, Religion and Politics. Antinomies of Organizing
Constantine Manda Comparative Politics, Political Economy Three Essays in African Politics
Stephen Moncrief International Relations

The Long Commitment: UN Peacekeeping, Statebuilding, and Security Sector Reform

Nica Siegel Political Theory, Democratic Theory, Theories of political action, Critical theory, broadly conceived, Continental philosophy, Psychoanalysis, Political Economy, Legal Theory, South African jurisprudence
 
A Political Theory of Exhaustion

Mie Inouye

Date PhD expected: May 2021 (expected)
Advisors:  Karuna Mantena, Noreen Khawaja, Helene Landemore, James Scott

Dissertation Title:
Antinomies of Organizing

Bio:
Mie is a joint PhD candidate in Political Theory and Religious Studies. She holds a B.A. from Tufts University and an M.A. from the University of Toronto.

Her dissertation, Antinomies of Organizing, reconstructs theories of political organizing from the praxis of organizers in the twentieth-century U.S. labor and civil rights movements. It traces the relationship between democratization and subjective transformation in the American organizing tradition and argues that this tradition holds important insights into the modes and ends of democratic participation.

Areas of Concentration:

  • Political Theory
  • Social Movements
  • Black Political Thought
  • American Political Thought
  • History of Political Thought
  • Theories of Political Action
  • Religion and Politics

Constantine Manda

Date PhD expected: May 2021 (expected)
Advisors:  Kate Baldwin (Advisor & Committee Chair),  Dan Mattingly (Committee Member),  Frances Rosenbluth (Committee Member)

Dissertation Title:
Three Essays in African Politics

Bio:
Habari! Hello! !Hola! Salut!

Thank you for your interest in hiring me.

I am a PhD candidate in the Department of Political Science at Yale University. My research straddles both comparative politics and political economy with a regional focus on Africa. I am generally interested in understanding how politics affects policymaking in economic development, however, I also work on other research areas including ethnic politics in Africa and understanding how pre-colonial societies still affect outcomes today in Africa.

My dissertation is a set of three essays in African politics. The first essay seeks to understand how ethnic minority leaders govern in Africa including how they distribute and share power with other ethnic groups but also how they mitigate risks of coups and civil wars. Specifically, I argue that ethnic minority leaders may be more likely to appoint coethnics in critical cabinet positions to mitigate the risks to coups and civil wars. I find that ethnic minority leaders are associated with being more likely than leaders from the plurality ethnic group to appoint coethnics in cabinet positions, particularly critical cabinet positions such as finance and defense. Despite also being associated with more coup attempts, ethnic minority leaders in Africa are not associated with a greater chance of these coups succeeding nor the incidence of civil wars.

The second essay in the dissertation looks at how pre-colonial political centralization affects religious beliefs today. Specifically, I argue and find, that because political rulers in pre-colonial Africa may have needed an argument of divine selection into their political leadership positions, that Africans today who are part of ethnic groups whose pre-colonial political centralization was high may be more likely to believe in a personal god, among other relevant religious beliefs.

The third essay exploits temporal and spatial variation in violent events to look at how violence affects attitudes toward political integration into a supra-national political state, the proposed East African Federation that hopes to include Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda. I find that Tanzanians surveyed within 14 days of violent events in Tanzania living increasingly close to where this violence occurred are less likely to approve of the proposed federation.

In addition to my doctoral work, I am also published in the Quarterly Journal of Economics, with co-authors, where we experimentally identify complementarities between financing for inputs and performance pay in early grade education in Tanzania.

Personal website.

Areas of Concentration:

  • Comparative Politics
  • Political Economy

Stephen Moncrief

Date PhD expected: May, 2020 (expected)
Advisors:  Nuno Monteiro, Elisabeth Wood, Steven Wilkinson

Dissertation Title:
The Long Commitment: UN Peacekeeping, Statebuilding, and Security Sector Reform

Bio:
I am a PhD Candidate in the Political Science Department at Yale University. My current research focuses on United Nations peacekeeping, international intervention, statebuilding, and political violence. I have presented my research at a number of national social science conferences, and my work has also been published in the Journal of Peace Research.

In my dissertation, I examine how UN peacekeeping has changed since the end of the Cold War. Specifically, I examine how UN peacekeeping has gradually come to resemble external statebuilding. I study the effects of this change on the duration and effectiveness of UN peacekeeping operations. I argue that when a UN peace operation commits to statebuilding, it invites new challenges that undermine its ability to exit. To support my argument, I use large-N quantitative analysis, as well as in-depth case studies of UN missions in Haiti and Sierra Leone.

Personal website

Areas of Concentration:

  • International Relations
  • Comparative Politics
  • Political Violence

Nica Siegel

Date PhD expected: May, 2021 (expected)
Advisors:  Seyla Benhabib, Karuna Mantena, Paul North

Dissertation Title:
A Political Theory of Exhaustion

Bio:
My name is Nica Siegel, and I am currently completing my dissertation, “A Political Theory of Exhaustion”, in the Department of Political Science at Yale University under the supervision of Seyla Benhabib, Karuna Mantena, and Paul North, which I will file in March 2021. My project addresses theories of political action and its frustrations through a study of the concept of “exhaustion,” engaging the history of political thought, democratic theory, and critical theory broadly conceived. To my research and pedagogy, I also bring expertise in political economy, theories of state violence, genealogies of liberalism, and legal theory, with a particular focus on South African jurisprudence.
An aphorism of graffiti in the recent Minnesota protests tells us, “another end of the world is possible!” Forty years after the “end of history,” confronted with specters of economic, political, environmental and racial crisis, exhaustion is once again central to the atmosphere of contemporary politics—but its politics remain elusive. Pushing against an encroaching sentiment of no-futurism, my research turns to the history of political thought to ask: what kind of a problem is exhaustion today and what can its ubiquity illuminate about the relation between critique and political action?

Engaging with the work of Hannah Arendt, Frantz Fanon, and Herbert Marcuse, A Political Theory of Exhaustion offers the first full-length study of the concept of exhaustion in political science. In the manuscript, I offer an account of how the specter of exhaustion shapes our conceptions of crisis, transformation, and political time, arguing that exhaustion becomes a paradoxical site of imaginative political commitment and mobilization at the heart of the project of political theory. Both because of their heterodox commitments to phenomenology and political economy and their own political vulnerabilities, the thinkers of the dissertation situate these critical moments in their thinking always already within the question of experience and the possibility of survival. For each, exhaustion also emerges, intersectionally, as a threat to the material possibility of life, a site of dramatic material need, the acknowledgement of which shapes at the root a set of ideas about the relation between endurance, critique, judgment, and collective action that are still resonant, with political actors and students alike, today. Building on this, I close the project with literature from recent social movements, using a set of ideas about endurance and care to bolster from the root, rather than constrain, the possibility of transformation in exhausted times.  The book emerging from this manuscript will be suitable both for political theorists and a broader, interdisciplinary audience, building on existing publications including in Theoria; Law & Social Inquiry; and an edited volume in NYU Press’s Houston Institute Series on Race and Justice. I have also begun research for a second book project which expands on the insights of an experimental strand of democratic psychoanalysis to rethink the structure of collective attachments at work in democratic transformation and institution-building.

My approach to political theory has also also been profoundly shaped by ongoing research in South Africa, which draws on research in both comparative politics and law from time working as a research fellow at the Legal Resources Centre in Cape Town. I have published articles and several parliamentary comments about customary land tenure and neoliberalism including in the South African Journal on Human Rights. I am currently completing an article titled “The Jurisprudence of Neglect” for publication. It uses archival evidence from Bantustan privatization efforts in the 60’s and 70’s to study the neglected role of neoliberalism as a tool for controlling political crisis under apartheid, an intervention in periodization with broader stakes for how we conceptualize the relation between neoliberalism and race in the contemporary state, and the ways in which revolt illuminates and challenges these juridical configurations. In this, I deepen my interests and expertise in law, democratic transitions, decolonial and comparative perspectives on custom and indigeneity, the politics and subject-formations of racial capitalism, neoliberalism, and biopolitics.

Teaching is central to my understanding of political theory and my own vision of my career, especially in a time of dramatic social change. I often recall Hannah Arendt’s evocative comment, which I first encountered as a student at a liberal arts college, that, “philosophic thought can never cancel the fact that Reality cannot be resolved into the thinkable; its job is rather to aggravate this unthinkability,” so that it can be brought to bear on an opaque present. In this, at Yale I have taught in the history of political thought, including in two large introductory courses and seminars about the politics of migration, and theories of non-violence. I can also offer courses and supervise work in ancient and modern democratic theory, genealogies of liberalism, critical theory, theories of political action, and continental and (de)colonial legal theory. I was recently awarded a grant to produce and co-teach “The Death Sentence”, a Spring 2020 Yale seminar in contemporary theories of life, death, and power that builds on work previously published in Law & Society.

As part of my commitment to equity and diversity, I believe that students often find pathways into texts through their own experiences and anxieties about the world, a process I consciously respect and actively steward. This practice, which creates openings for students without a background in political theory, was bolstered while teaching about capital punishment and other “death sentences” during the rise of coronavirus and of nascent protests against police killing in the US, when our class made the collective decision to rewrite the syllabus for the newly online course in order to study of racial conceptions of biopolitical power. I prepared new materials and lectures using best practices for online pedagogy and communicating through Canvas, Zoom, and online forums, emerging collectively with a renewed sense of the importance of political theory in real time.

My students highlighted for me one of the most powerful things about a political humanities classroom, namely, the experience of the always-shifting harmony and dissonance of different textual and political investments: the desire to understand what exists and the desire to transform it; the desire to sit with ambivalence and the desire to mean what you say and act upon it. In a time of polemics about student activism and the exhaustions of never-ending crisis in the humanities, I propose to students that the thinkers and actors we read were in the process of working through similar tensions. I recall one memorable classroom disagreement about J.S. Mill’s harm principle and its feminist critics. Through discussion, we came to a shared question: what happens when the forms of discourse that might raise new notions of harm are disallowed in advance as discursively unreasonable, as, for example, in the case of marital rape, whose opponents were dismissed as hysterics? How can a public learn to listen for this kind of claim-making? To support these conversations, I counteract dynamics of exclusion in the classroom by actively intervening in discussion and designing multiple modes of course participation, including writing, visual media, and other forms of presentation, especially crucial in the current online/hybrid teaching model.

Writing demands that students think about positionality, power, and their own relation to forces of creativity and production. It therefore occupies a central place in my classroom, where I combine high expectations with equally intensive support. I incorporate writing tools learned and adapted from wonderful mentors and colleagues from my time as a student at a teaching-intensive liberal arts college. For example, I often require students to produce a “reverse outline” of their paper drafts, and to reflect in writing on how their argument has changed. The purpose of this simple exercise is powerful: to help students embrace non-instrumental and unexpected learning while holding space for the demanding work of re-crafting shared intelligibility. In my experience, this both dramatically improves their writing and opens up a rewarding domain of inquiry about the politics of expression.

I have also honed my commitments to inclusion and diversity as a co-chair and committed participant in Yale’s Women in Theory Writing Colloquium. This work, focused on rigorous mutual support in the writing process, but also frank discussions of power in the academy, has prepared me to undertake both mentorship and collaboration in research. In broader service activities, including coordinating the Yale Political Theory Workshop and organizing to build community between Yale and New Haven, I am committed to creating challenging, supportive, diverse intellectual spaces.

Personal website

  • Areas of Concentration:
  • Political Theory
  • Democratic Theory
  • Theories of political action
  • Critical theory, broadly conceived
  • Continental philosophy
  • Psychoanalysis
  • Political Economy
  • Legal Theory
  • South African jurisprudence