Professor Duncan Bell

Professor of Political Thought and International Relations (POLIS)
Fellow of Christ's College

I am based in the Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS), though I teach on the M.Phil in Political Thought and Intellectual History. My work covers modern British and American political thought, especially ideologies of empire and international politics, though I also have interests in some aspects of contemporary political theory. 


My primary research interests are in the history of modern political thought and contemporary (international) political theory. More specifically, I work on the following historical topics: British social and political thought, c.1870-present; modern British and American ideologies of empire and imperial expansion; visions of utopia and dystopia; the history of the human sciences (especially political science and international relations) in the twentieth century. My interests in contemporary political theory focus on questions of empire, race and historical injustice; technology and politics; and political aesthetics, with a focus on architecture and speculative literature.


Tags & Themes


Christ's College



Key Publications

  • Dreamworlds of Race: Empire and the Utopian Destiny of Anglo-America (Princeton, 2020)
  • Reordering the World: Essays on Liberalism and Empire (Princeton, 2016)
  • The Idea of Greater Britain: Empire and the Future of World Order 1860-1900 (Princeton, 2017)

Other Publications

A full list of my publications can be accessed on my POLIS page