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Faculty Fellow

Jonathan Lear

Roman Family Director, Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society University of Chicago


Jonathan Lear

Photo by Erielle Bakkum.

Jonathan Lear served as Roman Family Director of the Neubauer Collegium from 2014 to 2022. He is the John U. Nef Distinguished Service Professor at the Committee on Social Thought and in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Chicago. He trained in Philosophy at Cambridge University and The Rockefeller University, where he received his Ph.D. in 1978. He works primarily on philosophical conceptions of the human psyche from Socrates to the present. He also trained as a psychoanalyst at the Western New England Institute for Psychoanalysis. His books include: Radical Hope: Ethics in the Face of Cultural Devastation (2006), Aristotle and Logical Theory (1980), Aristotle: The Desire to Understand (1988); Love and Its Place in Nature: A Philosophical Interpretation of Freudian Psychoanalysis (1990), Open Minded: Working Out the Logic of the Soul (1998), Happiness, Death and the Remainder of Life (2000), Therapeutic Action: An Earnest Plea for Irony (2003), Freud (2005), and A Case for Irony (Harvard University Press, 2011). His most recent book is Wisdom Won From Illness (Harvard University Press, 2017). He is a recipient of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Distinguished Achievement Award, a Fellow in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a member of the American Philosophical Society.