Ben Kafka

Associate Professor of Media, Culture and Communication; History

Ben Kafka

Office Hours: By appointment


Ben Kafka is a psychoanalyst, cultural historian, and critic. His first book, The Demon of Writing: Powers and Failures of Paperwork (Zone Books, 2012), explored the material, cultural, and unconscious origins of our conflicts with bureaucracy. He is currently working on a small project about raising children around analog media (books, records, films...) and a larger project about critical theory's search for a grand unified theory of unhappiness. He sees adult and adolescent patients in private practice.

Prof. Kafka is a Fellow of the New York Institute for the Humanities, and serves as chair of its executive committee; co-editor of History of the Present: A Journal of Critical History; a member of the editorial board of Grey Room; and a member of the advisory board of the Feminist Theory Archives at the Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women at Brown. He has held visiting positions at the American University in Paris, the School of Social Science of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, and the Internationales Kolleg für Kulturtechnikforschung und Medienphilosophie (IKKM) at the Bauhaus-Universität in Weimar.

He has cross-appointments in the Departments of History and French.



Grants and Awards



Courses Taught