Queen's University

Dr. Will Kymlicka

Professor, Department of Philosophy, Department of Political Studies, Faculty of Law
SOCIAL SCIENCES, SOCIAL JUSTICE, ANIMALS, COMMUNITIES

Autobiography

I am the Canada Research Chair in Political Philosophy in the Philosophy Department at Queen's University in Kingston, Canada, where I have taught since 1998. My research interests focus on issues of democracy and diversity, and in particular on models of citizenship and social justice within multicultural societies. I have published eight books and over 200 articles, which have been translated into 34 languages, and have received several awards, most recently, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012, and Honorary Doctorates from the University of Copenhagen in 2013 and KU Leuven in 2014.

I am the co-director, along with Keith Banting, of the Multiculturalism Policy Index project, which monitors the evolution of multiculturalism policies across the Western democracies. The MCP Index project is designed to provide information about multiculturalism policies in a standardized format that aids comparative research and contributes to the understanding of state-minority relations.

Born and raised in Canada, I was educated at Queen's and Oxford University, and have held positions at various Canadian, American and European universities before moving to Queen's. I am also a recurrent visiting professor in the Nationalism Studies program at the Central European University in Budapest.

I am married to author Sue Donaldson, with whom I co-authored Zoopolis: A Political Theory of Animal Rights (Oxford UP, 2011), which was awarded the 2013 Biennial Book Prize from the Canadian Philosophical Association, and is translated into German, Japanese, Turkish and French. For information on several new initiatives at Queen’s relating to animal ethics, including a postdoctoral fellowship that I am directing, visit the Animals in Philosophy, Politics, Law and Ethics page.

Some of my recent and forthcoming papers are available on the Academia website: http://queensu.academia.edu/WillKymlicka

 

Most Recent Project

The Conversation: Are identity politics emancipatory or regressive?

File 20180418 163986 1gkjkv9.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1Identity politics are a pervasive feature of the modern world. From caste-based politics in India to the rise of xenophobic Christian nationalism in Italy and Hungary, people are mobilising to defend perceived ethnic and religious group identities.

The strength of identity politics is surprising. Post-war modernisation theories argued that inherited ethnic and religious identities would weaken under modernisation, or at least for their “groupness” to diminish. Urbanisation, education, mobility and communication technology were all supposed to weaken people’s identification with “primordial” ethnic or religious groups.

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Other Projects

  • Multiculturalism Policy Index

    The Multiculturalism Policy Index is a scholarly research project that monitors the evolution of multiculturalism policies in 21 Western democracies. The project is designed to provide information about multiculturalism policies in a standardized format that aids comparative research and contributes to the understanding of state-minority relations. The project provides an index at three points in time - 1980, 2000, 2010 and for three types of minorities: one index relating to immigrant groups, one relating to historic national minorities, and one relating to indigenous peoples.

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  • Animals in Philosophy, Politics, Law & Ethics (APPLE)

    In the burgeoning field of critical animal studies, Queen’s Philosophy is establishing a home for scholars focused on the ethical, legal and political dimensions of human-animal relationships. We live in an unprecedented era of animal exploitation, habitat destruction, and species loss, prompting many to reconsider the ethics and sustainability of our treatment of non-human animals.  Our goal is to help bring ‘the animal question’ into the mainstream of academic research and public debate in Canada, focusing in particular on the moral, legal and political dimensions of how human-animal relations are governed.

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  • Zoopolis A Political Theory of Animal Rights

    Zoopolis offers a new agenda for the theory and practice of animal rights. Most animal rights theory focuses on the intrinsic capacities or interests of animals, and the moral status and moral rights that these intrinsic characteristics give rise to. Zoopolis shifts the debate from the realm of moral theory and applied ethics to the realm of political theory, focusing on the relational obligations that arise from the varied ways that animals relate to human societies and institutions.

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