Ursula Renz

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Ursula Renz (* 1968 in Zurich ) is a Swiss philosopher and professor of philosophy at the Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz ( history of philosophy ).


Ursula Renz studied philosophy and German at the University of Zurich , where she received her doctorate in 2000 and qualified as a professor in 2007. From 1998 to 2002 she was an assistant at the Philosophical Department of the University of Zurich. After research stays at Yale University (2002–2003) and ENS Lyon (2003–2004), she worked from 2004 to 2009 in the humanities department at ETH Zurich . In 2008 she was appointed Associate Professor at Roskilde University ( Denmark ). In 2009 she accepted a position at the University of Klagenfurt , where she worked as a professor of philosophy until the beginning of 2020. During this time, she also did research stays at Harvard (09–12 / 2013), Konstanz (03 / 2014–08 / 2015), Lyon (ENS, May 2018) and Warwick (09–11 / 2019). Since February 2020 she has been professor for the history of philosophy at the University of Graz and head of the Alexius Meinong Institute.

Renz was an Alexander von Humboldt fellow . Her book on Spinoza The Explainability of Experience won the 2011 Journal of the History of Philosophy Book Prize as the best book published in the history of philosophy in 2010.


In her research , Renz combines the detailed reconstruction of historical positions with the discussion of questions of theoretical philosophy . Her historical focus lies in the early modern period , with Kant and Marburg neo-Kantianism . She works systematically on questions of epistemology (especially self-knowledge ), metaphysics ( identity and concept of person ) as well as the philosophy of mind ( emotions ). In 2019 she headed a larger FWF research project: Spinoza and the Concept of the Human Life-Form .

Renz is a co-initiator and founding member of the interdisciplinary and inter-university research platform The Exercise of Judgment in the Early Modern Period .

In July 2019, the book What, please, is cultural identity? An orientation in times of populism on the shortlist for the Tractatus Prize 2019. In July 2020 Ursula Renz held an interview on the subject of "cultural values", migration and the concept of identity.


  • What is cultural identity, please? An orientation in times of populism. Schwabe, Basel 2019, ISBN 978-3-7965-3912-1 .
  • The explainability of experience. Subjectivity and Realism in Spinoza's Theory of the Human Mind. Oxford University Press, New York 2018, ISBN 978-0-19-935017-9 .
  • The explainability of experience. Subjectivity and Realism in Spinoza's Theory of the Human Mind. Klostermann, Frankfurt 2010, ISBN 978-3-465-03643-2 .
  • The rationality of culture. On the philosophy of culture and its transcendental justification in Cohen, Natorp and Cassirer. Meiner, Frankfurt 2002, ISBN 3-7873-1598-5 .


Individual evidence

  1. ^ Page on Ursula Renz at the University of Graz
  2. Renz, Ursula: The Explainability of Experience: Realism and Subjectivity in Spinoza's Theory of the Human Mind . Klostermann, Frankfurt 2010, ISBN 978-3-465-03643-2 .
  3. JHP - JHP Book and Article Prize Winners. Retrieved April 15, 2019 .
  4. Most underrated philosopher of the week: Ursula Renz. Retrieved April 15, 2019 .
  5. ^ Spinozistic Life Form. Retrieved April 15, 2019 (American English).
  6. Research communication : What characterizes human life. In: University of Klagenfurt. October 6, 2016, accessed on April 15, 2019 (German).
  7. JUDGMENT research platform. In: University of Klagenfurt. Accessed April 15, 2019 (German).
  8. Shortlist 2019 - Philosophicum Lech. Retrieved July 7, 2020 .
  9. «The pressure is increasing not only to show one's colors, but it has to be flashy too». In: The magazine. September 20, 2019, accessed on July 7, 2020 (Swiss Standard German).