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Failing Politically: Masao Maruyama and Comparative Political Theory


This project is the first major study of the renowned Japanese political theorist Masao Maruyama (1914–1996) from a distinctly comparative perspective. An interdisciplinary project located at the intersection of Political Theory, Global Intellectual History, and Japanese and East Asian Studies, it presents a novel reinterpretation of Maruyama as a theorist of political failure, drawing comparisons between him and a host of other thinkers, including Hannah Arendt, Raymond Aron, Christopher Browning, Yukichi Fukuzawa, Louis Hartz, Hisao Otstuka, Judith Shklar and Takaaki Yoshimoto. In so doing, it simultaneously builds on and contributes to the recent debate over the nature, scope and methodology of Comparative Political Theory (CPT). The project will be hosted by the Department of Philosophy and the History of Ideas at Aarhus University (AU), where I will also be affiliated with the Department of Global Studies and the Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies, and collaborate with other on-going projects such as the Horizon 2020 project on 'European Colonial Heritage Modalities in Colonial Cities'. My supervisor and I will meet fortnightly, co-direct a new Research Unit on Global and Comparative Political Thought, and coordinate a number of academic events pertinent to my project. The research findings will be disseminated through essay publications and oral presentations, and will ultimately culminate in a major monograph, which will be the first English-language book on Maruyama written in Europe. I will also develop as a teacher of political theory as well as a researcher, enrolling in AU's Teacher Training Programme, obtaining the University Teaching Qualification, and gaining teaching experiences. Making highly original contributions to the current pan-European debate over the globalization of Political Theory as an academic discipline, the successful completion of this project will add a new dimension to my work and significantly enhance my future career prospect.

Call for proposal

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Funding Scheme

MSCA-IF-EF-ST - Standard EF


Nordre Ringgade 1
8000 Aarhus C
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 207 312