Ben Kafka

Associate Professor of Media, Culture and Communication; History

Ben Kafka

Office Hours: Wednesdays 10:30-12:00

Ben Kafka teaches psychoanalysis, critical theory, and cultural history in NYU's Department of Media, Culture, and Communication. He is also an advanced candidate at the Institute for Psychoanalytic Training and Research (IPTAR-IPA), working with adult and adolescent patients at the IPTAR Clinical Center. His first book, The Demon of Writing: Powers and Failures of Paperwork (Zone Books, 2012; French translation, Le démon de l'écriture, Éditions Zones Sensibles, 2013) investigates the historical, material, and unconscious origins of our conflicts with bureaucracy. He's currently working on a new project about forms of magical thinking under late capitalism and co-directing NYU's Interdisciplinary Freud Studies Group.

Kafka has been a member of the Princeton Society of Fellows in the Liberal Arts; the School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study; the Internationales Kolleg für Kulturtechnikforschung und Medienphilosophie (IKKM) at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar; and, since 2007, the New York Institute for the Humanities, where he currently serves as Chair of the Executive Committee. He also serves on the board of the Feminist Theory Archives at the Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women at Brown University. He is co-editor of History of the Present: A Journal of Critical History and a member of the editorial board of Grey Room.

He received his B.A. in History and Modern Culture & Media from Brown and his Ph.D. in History from Stanford.


Selected Reviews

Grants and Awards




Courses Taught