Judith Butler is Maxine Elliot Professor in the Department of Comparative Literature and the Program of Critical Theory at the University of California, Berkeley. She served as Founding Director of the Critical Theory Program at UC Berkeley. She received her Ph.D. in Philosophy from Yale University in 1984. She is the author of Subjects of Desire: Hegelian Reflections in Twentieth-Century France (1987), Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity (1990), Bodies That Matter: On the Discursive Limits of “Sex” (1993), The Psychic Life of Power: Theories of Subjection (1997), Excitable Speech (1997), Antigone’s Claim: Kinship Between Life and Death (2000), Precarious Life: Powers of Violence and Mourning (2004); Undoing Gender (2004), Who Sings the Nation-State?: Language, Politics, Belonging (with Gayatri Spivak in 2008), Frames of War: When Is Life Grievable? (2009), and Is Critique Secular? (co-written with Talal Asad, Wendy Brown, and Saba Mahmood, 2009) and Sois Mon Corps (2011), co-authored with Catherine Malabou.
Her most recent books include: Parting Ways: Jewishness and the Critique of Zionism (2012), Dispossessions: The Performative in the Political co-authored with Athena Athanasiou (2013), Senses of the Subject (2015) and Notes Toward a Performative Theory of Assembly (2015). Her future projects include work on messianic gestures in Kafka and Benjamin, philosophical fictions in Freud’s work, and gender in translation.
She is also active in gender and sexual politics and human rights, anti-war politics, and serves on the advisory board of Jewish Voice for Peace and their committee on Academic Freedom. She was most recently the chair of the Committee for Academic Freedom and Professional Responsibilities for the MLA. She is affiliated with the Psychosocial Studies at Birkbeck College and the European Graduate School in Switzerland. She was the recipient of the Andrew Mellon Award for Distinguished Academic Achievement in the Humanities (2009-13). She received the Adorno Prize from the City of Frankfurt (2012) in honor of her contributions to feminist and moral philosophy, the Brudner Prize from Yale University for lifetime achievement in gay and lesbian studies, and the Research Lecturer honor at UC Berkeley in 2005. She is as well the past recipient of several fellowships including Guggenheim, Rockefeller, Ford, American Council of Learned Societies, and was Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton and at the College des Hautes Etudes in Paris. She has received honorary degrees from Université Bordeaux-III, Université Paris-VII, Grinnell College, McGill University, University of St. Andrews, Université de Fribourg in Switzerland, Universidad de Costa Rica, Universidad de Buenos Aires in Argentina, and the Université de Liége in Belgium. In 2014, she was awarded the diploma of Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters from the French Cultural Ministry. In 2015 she was elected as a corresponding fellow of the British Academy.