The Centre for the History of European Discourses was incorporated in the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities in August 2015.

The information in this website is therefore out of date but retained for archival and staff purposes.

Professor Conal Condren
Professor Conal Condren

B.Sc., M.Sc., Ph.D. (University of London, LSE), FAHA, FASSA
Emeritus Scientia Professor, University of New South Wales


Conal Condren is the author of Three Aspects of Political Theory: On the Confusions and Reformation of an Expression (Melbourne: Macmillan, 1979); The Status and Appraisal of Classic Texts: An Essay on Political Theory, its Inheritance and on The History of Ideas (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1985); George Lawson's Politica and the English Revolution (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989); The Language of Politics in Seventeenth-Century England (London: Macmillan, 1994); Satire, Lies and Politics: The Case of Dr Arbuthnot (London: Macmillan, 1997); Thomas Hobbes (New York: Twayne, 2000); Argument and Authority in Early Modern England :The Presupposition of Oaths and Offices (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006). With Stephen Gaukroger and Ian Hunter he has edited The Philosopher in Early Modern Europe: The Nature of a Contested Identity (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006, 2009); and ‘The Persona of the Philosopher in the Eighteenth Century’ Intellectual History Review, 18, 3 (2008).
He works both as a political philosopher and intellectual historian. Chronologically his work has ranged from the 14th to the 18th centuries and within this period he has concentrated mainly on persons and problems seen as raising broader issues. He has developed his own approach to the nature and study of intellectual history requiring the integration of materials beyond the boundaries of “politics” or “theory” and the layering of different types of context. His work has continuity of theme and places emphasis on pragmatics (word use and change) and historical interpretation. He has also published in non-historical areas of political theory/philosophy: one major work was largely taken up with the logical analysis of interpretative concepts. In the next phase of his research, he intends to focus more formally on theoretical issues arising from his historical work to develop a general account of political language change.


  • ‘Public, private and the idea of the ‘Public Sphere’ in   early-modern England’, Intellectual History Review, 19, 1 (2009):15-28.
  • ‘Understanding Shakespeare’s perfect prince: Henry V, the ethics of office and the French Prisoners’, in The Shakespearean International Yearbook, 9, (2009): 195-213.
  • 'ANZAMEMS (Inc.): Notes towards a pre-history’, Parergon, 27, 1, (2010): 1-12.
  • Shakespeare and Early Modern Political Thought, contributor and co-editor with David Armitage and Andrew Fitzmaurice (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009, 2012).
  • Hobbes, The Scriblerians and the History of Philosophy (London: Pickering and Chatto, 2011).
  • 'Reason of State and Sovereignty in Early Modern England: A Question of Ideology?', in Reason of State, Natural Law, and Early Modern Statecraft eds. Cathy Curtis and David Martin Jones, Parergon, 28, 2, (2011): 5-27.
  • ‘Satire and Definition’, Humor: International Journal of Humor Research 25 4 (2012): 375-399
  • ‘Sovereignty’, in The Oxford History of Seventeenth-Century English Philosophy, ed. Peter Anstey.    
  • The Uses of Tyranny, and Liberty in Seventeenth-century England. Louis Green Lecture on Intellectual History and the Social history of Ideas for 2013: Melbourne, Monash University, Ancora Press, 2014, pp.v +31.
  • ‘Satire’, The Encyclopedia of Humor Studies,  ed. S. Attardo, L.A.& London, sage, 2014, vol.2, pp.661-4'
  • The Philosopher Hobbes as the Poet Homer', Renaissance Studies, 28, 1 (2014), pp.71-89.
  • 'Historiographical Myth, Discipline and Contextual Distortion', History of European Ideas, 40, 1, (2014) pp. 37-43.


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