Wesleyan portrait of Ethan  Kleinberg

Ethan Kleinberg

Class of 1958 Distinguished Professor

Boger Hall, 327

Professor of Letters

Boger Hall, 327

Professor of History

Boger Hall, 327

Editor-in-Chief, History and Theory

95 Pearl Street,


BA University of California, Berkeley
MA University of California, Los Angeles
PHD University of California, Los Angeles

Ethan Kleinberg

Ethan Kleinberg is the Class of 1958 Distinguished Professor of History and Letters at Wesleyan University and Editor-in-Chief of History and Theory. Kleinberg's wide-ranging scholarly work spans across the fields of history, philosophy, comparative literature and religion. In particular, Kleinberg engages with the ways that the past haunts our present and presses us toward the future, advocating for a deconstructive approach to better account for this complex temporal entanglement. His current book project extends this investigation by focusing on how what he calls “temporal anarchy”—the unrestrained mingling of past, present, and future— can lead to a different understanding  of history that is not restrained by what has been, but instead attracted to what can be thus pointing us toward critical political and ethical action. The past as future, if you will, rather than a futures past. 

He is the author of:

  • Emmanuel Levinas’s Talmudic Turn: Philosophy and Jewish Thought (Stanford University Press, October 2021).
  • Haunting History: for a deconstructive approach to the past (Stanford University Press, 2017)
  • Generation Existential: Martin Heidegger’s Philosophy in France, 1927-61 (Cornell University Press, 2006).
  • Theses on Theory and History (Wild On Collective, 2018).  http://theoryrevolt.com/
  • Presence: Philosophy, History, and Cultural Theory for the Twenty-First Century co-edited with Ranjan Ghosh (Cornell University Press, 2013).

Kleinberg received his B.A from UC. Berkeley and his Ph.D. from UCLA.  In 1998 he was a Fulbright scholar in France. In 2003 he was the recipient of Wesleyan University’s Carol A. Baker ’81 Memorial Prize for excellence in teaching and research. In 2006 his book Generation Existential: Heidegger’s Philosophy in France, 1927-1961 was awarded the Morris D. Forkosch prize for the best book in intellectual history by the Journal of the History of Ideas. In 2011 he was Directeur d’études invité at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris. In the Fall of 2021 he will be the Reinhart Koselleck Gastprofessur at Bielefeld University.

Academic Affiliations

Office Hours

Spring 2024:  Tuesday and Thursday from 1:00-2:00 pm and by appointment.


Fall 2024
COL 150F - 02
Great Books Unbound (FYS)

HIST 108 - 01
Time Machines