Anya Topolski is an associate professor in ethics and political philosophy at the Radboud University Nijmegen. She obtained two bachelor degrees at McGill University in Montreal, Canada: BSc in Biochemistry (1999) and an BA Honours in Philosophy (2000). After a brief but memorable experience teaching in Korea, Anya moved to Belgium to complete a Masters in Continental Philosophy (Magna Cum Laude) specialising in the political thought of Hannah Arendt. She obtained her PhD in Philosophy at the KU Leuven, for which she was awarded the 2008 Auschwitz Foundation Stichting Prize , with a focus on the political thought of Hannah Arendt, the ethics of Emmanuel Levinas and contemporary Jewish thought.
In 2009, she joined an interdisciplinary NWO project as a post-doctoral researcher to consider the application of her theory of relationality in the field of military ethics where she engaged in post-Srebrenica research on responsibility and judgment. In 2012 her research on European Identity and Exclusion, antisemitism and islamophobia, was funded by FWO – Flanders. In addition she was a lecturer at the University of Kent in Brussels in political rhetoric and communication. In 2015 she became an assistant professor in political theory at the Faculty of Management at Radboud University, Nijmegen. As of 2017 she joined the ethics and poitics department of the faculty of philosophy where she now is principle investigator fort he Race-Religion Constellation Project and coordiantor of the Race, religion, Secularism Network. For more information here is her website and a recent interview.
Her current research is in the field of critical philosophy of race and focuses on the race-religion intersection in European. Her areas of expertise are: racism, political philosophy, ethics, European identity and exclusion, gender, antisemitism and Islamophobia, political theology, Jewish thought, Arendt, Levinas, Judeo-Christianity.
Academic books; as author (IBa)
(2015). Arendt, Levinas and A Politics of Relationality. In: Assiter A., van der Zweerde E. (Eds.), bookseries: Reframing the Boundaries: Thinking the Political. London: Rowman & Littlefield International. 304 pages.
Academic books; as editor (IBe)
(2018). Ethics for Psychologists: A Global and Case-Based Approach. Editor: Anya Topolski. Sage Publishing.
(2016). Is there a Judeo-Christian Tradition? A European Perspective. (Topolski, A., Ed., Nathan, E., Ed.). De Gruyter.
Articles in internationally reviewed academic journals; as editor (ITe)
(2022) Special Issue of Social Dynamics: A Journal of African Studies on the Intersection of Race in Religion in African Political Communities. Co-edited with Josias Tembo.
(2020) Special Issue of the Journal Political Theology on Jean Bodin and the Sovereignty of Exclusion. Co-edited with James Renton. Issue 6, Volume 21, 2020
(2019) Special Issue of the Journal The European Legacy on Judith Butler’s Parting Ways. Co-edited with Louis Klee. Response by Judith Butler.
Articles in internationally reviewed academic journals (IT)
(2023). The Race Religion Constellation. In The Routledge Encyclopedia of Race and Racism. Ed. John Solomos. Section: Histories/Origins, Ed. Nasar Meer. Routledge.
(2022) Exploring the Entanglement of Race and Religion in Africa. Co-author: Josias Tembo. Special Issue of Social Dynamics: A Journal of African Studies on the Intersection of Race in Religion in African Political Communities. Co-edited with Josias Tembo.
(2022) On race and religion in African political communities: an interview with David Theo Goldberg. Co-author: Nyanchama Okemwa. Special Issue of Social Dynamics: A Journal of African Studies on the Intersection of Race in Religion in African Political Communities. Co-edited with Josias Tembo.
(2020) The Dangerous Discourse of the ‘Judeo-Christian’ Myth: Masking the Race-Religion Constellation in Europe. Patterns of Prejudice. Genealogies of ‘Jews’ and ‘Muslims’: Social Imaginaries in the Race–Religion Nexus. A special issue guest-edited by Yolande Jansen and Nasar Meer Volume 54. Issue 1 & 2. 71-90.
(2020) Bodin Now; or, What’s Wrong With Intellectual History? In the Special Issue of the Journal Political Theology on Jean Bodin’s and the Sovereignty of Exclusion. Co-edited with James Renton. Issue 6, Volume 21, 2020. 475-478. https://doi.org/10.1080/1462317X.2020.1806609
(2020) Nation-States, the Race-Religion Constellation, and Diasporic Political Communities: Hannah Arendt, Judith Butler, and Paul Gilroy. Special Issue of the Journal The European Legacy Judith Butler’s Parting Ways or Ways of Cohabitation. Guest Editors: Anya Topolski & Louis Klee. Volume 25, Issue 3. 266-281. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10848770.2020.174126
(2020) Rejecting the Rhetoric of Uniqueness: The First Step Towards Semitic Solidarity. Jewish Quarterly. Forthcoming.
(2018) The Race-Religion Intersection: A European Contribution to the Critical Philosophy of Race. Critical Philosophy of Race. Issue 6.1
(2017) Good Jew, Bad Jew: ‘Managing’ Europe’s Others. Ethnic and Racial Studies (Special issue 'Islamophobia and Surveillance: Genealogies of a Global Order'). Ed. James Renton. www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/01419870.2018.1391402
(2016). Tzedakah: The True Religion of Spinoza's Tractatus? History of Political Thought, 37(1), pp. 78-106.
Article in academic book (IHb)
(2023) What Do Women Have To Do With It? Race, Religion and the Witch Hunts. Purple Brains. Editor Katrine Smiet. Radboud University Press.
(2021) Race, Religion and Refugees: Arendt’s Ambiguous Analysis of Nation-States. Ed. Maria Robaszkiewicz. Hannah Arendt: Challenges of Plurality. Springer.
Researchers: Anya Topolski
Researchers: Anya Topolski
Hey you on the other side of the screen!
This is Riikka Toropainen writing here. I am a 30-year-old, second-year bachelor's student from Finland. I decided to quit the career that I was pursuing and chase my dreams of studying higher education abroad. That is why I ended up studying at Radboud University Nijmegen and taking the course Culture through Philosophy given by Dr. Anya Topolski. At the end of every course, there was a final research project. Dr. Topolski encouraged us to think out of the box and do a creative assignment related to the topics we have learned. I saw my chance to pursue another teenage dream and be a YouTuber. I also wanted to share more knowledge of my own country (and other Nordic countries). Since, from time to time during my studies, I have felt that they are not represented even though Nordic countries are part of the West and Europe which my studies are related to.
I spend hours on research and creating a style for my invented YouTube channel, I started filming. After editing my footage for a day, I realized I was missing some key points and thus, was not happy with it. I started from the beginning and with a better script. When I finally finished editing the new footage, the situation in Finland had changed and you can see the outcome in the final result of my video essay. The project taught me, not only about my chosen topic but also how academic learning can be easier to consume - like video essays.
I hope you enjoy the video essay and me having fun in front of the camera!
Sam van Stokkom - Culture Through Philosophy Video Essay
My name is Sam van Stokkom, I am 19 years old and I am a second year Arts and Culture student at Radboud University Nijmegen. In the first semester of this academic year I took a course called ‘Culture Through Philosophy’. At the end of this course we were expected to hand in a final research project. My professor, Dr. Topolski, encouraged us to be creative with this project and told us it didn’t have to be a written paper. This inspired me to think outside the box, and I immediately knew I wanted to record a video essay. I regularly watch informative video essays of other creators, so I wanted to give it a go myself. After weeks of research, days of writing a script and hours of filming and editing, this is the final product! This video essay has been the most fun and rewarding final project I have ever created for a course. I have never developed such a thorough understanding of a topic like I have with the topic of this project. I hope my video teaches viewers something new as well!
If you have any questions or remarks about this project, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I would love to hear from you!