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School of Languages, Linguistics and Film

Isabel Jacobs, BA, MA


PhD Student in Comparative Literature



Isabel Jacobs specialises in Russian, German and French philosophy, with a focus on migration and the global entanglement of ideas. Her research is situated at the intersections of comparative philosophy, aesthetics, and the history of science. Her dissertation on Russo-French philosopher Alexandre Kojève is funded by the London Arts & Humanities Partnership (2020-2024).

She studied Philosophy and Slavonic Studies in Heidelberg, Prague, Saint Petersburg, Turin and London. In 2022, she was a Research Fellow at the German Center for Art History in Paris, working with Kojèves unpublished manuscripts and photographs. Following a workshop on Kojève, she currently co-edits two special issues, at Continental Philosophy Review and Studies in East European Thought.

She co-hosts the Reading Group Late Soviet Temporalities and the International Conference Images of the Ideal. Evald Ilyenkov at 100. From 2024-25, she is an Associate Postgraduate at the Centre Marc Bloch in Berlin.

Supervisor: Prof Galin Tihanov


Undergraduate Teaching

COM300: The Scene of Writing

COM5217: Adventures in World Literature


Research Interests:

Comparative Philosophy; Russian, German and French Thought; Aesthetics; Philosophy of Science; East European Cinema; Exile and Migration; Surrealism; Philosophy of Time; Embodiment; Political Theology; Plant Philosophy


For an up-to-date list of publications, see

Selected publications:

Alexandre Kojève, Zum Problem einer diskreten Welt, Leipzig: Merve, 2023.

Evald Ilyenkov’s Ecology of Personality,” Journal of the History of Ideas Blog, 2023.

Thinking in Circles: Kojève and Russian Hegelianism,” Studies in East European Thought, 2023.

Alexandre Kojève and Russian Philosophy,” Studies in East European Thought (co-authored with Trevor Wilson), 2023.

Interviews on Kira Muratovas Brief Encounters and The Long Farewell, Studiocanal, Vintage World Classics, Blu-ray, DVD and Digital, 2023.

Introduction to Alexandre Kojève’s 'Moscow, August 1957',” Studies in East European Thought, 2023.

From the Inexistent to the Concrete: Kojève after Kandinsky,” in Alexandre Kojève, a Man of Influence, Lanham: Lexington Books, 2022, pp. 27-51.

Sunstruck: Review of Oxana Timofeeva, Solar Politics, Radical Philosophy Vol. 213 (October 2022).

Laboratory Life: Juri Lotman on Scientific Revolutions,” Journal of the History of Ideas Blog, 2022.

Review of Karel Kosík and the Dialectics of the Concrete, Marx & Philosophy Review of Books, 2022.

Review of Keti Chukhrov: Practicing the Good: Desire and Boredom in Soviet Socialism. Marx & Philosophy Review of Books, 2021.

Rediscovering Boris Poplavsky: poet, exile and enfant terrible of Russia’s Silver Age,” Calvert Journal, 2021.

Soviet Parallel Cinema,” East European Film Bulletin Vol. 109 (2020).

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