Political Science Faculty

Robert K. Faulkner

Research Professor


Robert Faulkner teaches and writes chiefly about modern political philosophy and American political and legal thought. He is author of The Case for Greatness: Honorable Ambition and Its Critics (2007), Francis Bacon and the Project of Progress (1993), Richard Hooker and the Politics of a Christian England (1981), and The Jurisprudence of John Marshall (1968). His book on honorable ambition includes chapters on Xenophon's Cyrus; Plato's Alcibiades; Aristotle's virtue of magnanimity; and critiques by Hobbes, Kant, Nietzsche, Rawls, and Arendt.

Faulkner co-edited America at Risk (2009) and Marshall's Life of George Washington (2000). He has written recently about Lincoln’s prescriptions for liberal democracy, Carlyle on the hero, the differences between Xenophon’s Cyrus and Herodotus’s, Aristotle’s doubts about executive power, Locke's republicanism and critique of religion, and Bacon's scientific method and his use of the essay as a literary form.

Faulkner was a Marshall Scholar at Oxford and has held fellowships from the Ford, Mellon, Earhart, and Bradley foundations and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is a past chair of the department and a past president of the New England Political Science. Association.