Dr Mira Siegelberg

University Lecturer in the History of International Political Thought
Dr Mira Siegelberg

Mira Siegelberg completed her B.A at Columbia University and her MA and PhD in international history at Harvard University. She has been a fellow at the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics and a research fellow at the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law at Cambridge University. In 2014- 2016 she was a postdoctoral fellow at the Princeton Society of Fellows and has previously taught law and history at Queen Mary, University of London.

My research examines the historical origins of the conceptual, normative, and legal frameworks that define the boundaries of international politics and international order. I am centrally interested in how ideas and expectations about the norms of interstate order emerge, and how these expectations have shaped global political order.

One of the main objectives of my research to date has been to understand how mass displacement in the twentieth century set the moral and political boundary lines between international and national spheres of authority. My book, Statelessness: A Modern History (forthcoming with Harvard University Press in October 2020) is the first intellectual and legal history of the concept of statelessness from the late nineteenth century to the present day. The book explores the theoretical, political and legal response to the rise of mass statelessness—the category that following the First World War came to define the absence of national status—and its relation to the modern regimes of law and rights that today segment people as citizens of states and as subjects of particular international legal regimes. This research draws together the approaches and methods of the history of political and international political thought with the history of international order. By charting the consequences of the rise of statelessness as a mass phenomenon on the justification of the boundaries that define international order, I aim to recover its central importance for comprehending contemporary dilemmas and political possibilities, and to engage a larger public concerned with the moral and political questions surrounding migration and the boundaries of political protection and membership.


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