Dr. John R. Pottenger

Pottenger2015Professor and Department Chair
Office: Morton Hall 250
Phone: 256.824.2313
Dr. Pottenger has been a National Endowment for the Humanities research fellow at UCLA and UC Berkeley onthe philosophy and history of the scientific revolution; a Mellon Foundation seminar director at William and Mary College on liberation theology; a guest speaker at Moscow State University, USSR, on American political science; and a lecturer and workshop facilitator for the U.S. State Department in Egypt, the Russian Federation, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan on civil society.
Dr. Pottenger's published research includes two books:
  • Reaping the Whirlwind: Liberal Democracy and the Religious Axis (Georgetown University Press)
  • The Political Theory of Liberation Theology: Toward a Reconvergence of Social Values and Social Science (State University of New York Press)

and numerous book chapters and journal articles--published in Interpretation: A Journal of Political Philosophy, Central Asian Survey, International Journal of Social Economics, and American Review of Politics, among others--dealing with problems with classical Platonic philosophy, modern political theory, contemporary political theology, religion and civil society, radical theories of hermeneutics, and Marxist class analysis.

Dr. Pottenger teaches the following undergraduate and graduate courses in political philosophy:

  • Classical Political Philosophy (PSC/PHL 330)
  • Modern Political Philosophy (PSC/PHL 332)
  • American Political Thought (PSC 334)
  • Political Ideologies (PSC 436)
  • Contemporary Political Thought (PSC/PHL 438)
  • Advanced Topics in Political Science: Religion and Politics (PSC 480/580)
  • The American Polity (PSC 600)
  • Public Values and Public Policy (PSC 630)

He received his BA and MA in political science from Arizona State University, focusing on political theory, and his PhD in political philosophy from the University of Maryland, where he concentrated on logical and normative problems in ethical and political philosophy, philosophy of science, and contemporary social theory.