School of Politics and International Relations

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Hugo Drochon

Assistant Professor in Political Theory, Faculty of Social Sciences



I am a political theorist and historian of political thought, with interests in Nietzsche's politics, democratic theory, liberalism, centrism and conspiracy theories. I study the different facets of modern democracy to develop a 'dynamic' theory of democracy.

Before coming to Nottingham I was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow on the Conspiracy and Democracy research project at CRASSH, Cambridge, where I also completed my PhD. I have been a Visiting Fellow at Yale, EHESS, Princeton and the EUI, am a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, the Royal Society for the Arts and the Higher Education Academy, and have won a number of prizes, including the Nottingham Reward Scheme and the St John's Mansergh History Prize at Cambridge.

My first book Nietzsche's Great Politics came out with Princeton University Press in 2016 (paperback 2018). It was reviewed in a number of popular and scholarly publications including the New Yorker, TLS, New Statesman, Dissent, LARB, Times Higher Education and Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews. It also featured in interviews with Vox and the Irish Times. It was selected as one of CHOICE's Outstanding Academic Titles for 2017, longlisted for the Bronislaw Geremek First Academic Book Prize and is currently being translated into Chinese (Commercial Press) and Spanish (Adriana Hidalgo).

My current research is on elite theories of democracy - Mosca, Pareto and Michels - and the impact their thinking had on the development of democratic theory in the US and Europe after WWII, notably on figures such as Joseph Schumpeter, Robert Dahl, C Wright Mills and Raymond Aron. I have a book entitled Elites and Democracy under contract with Princeton University Press.

I write regularly for the TLS, Guardian, New Statesman, The Nation, Project Syndicate, Irish Times, Persuasion, Unherd, RSA Journal and the Cambridge Journal, and have appeared on BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio 4, France Culture, Al Jazeera and Talking Politics. I have also spoken at the Hay and Cheltenham Literary Festivals.

Teaching Summary

Populism, Elites and Democracy (POLI3117)

Democracy and Elites in Twentieth Century Europe and America (POLI4191)

Democracy and Its Critics (POLI2013)

Introduction to Political Theory (POLI1013)

Selected Publications

School of Politics and International Relations

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