Lev Marder holds a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Philosophy Department and Centre for the Study of Democracy and Diversity, working under the supervision of Will Kymlicka. Lev received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of California-Irvine. His broad areas of expertise include political theory, history of political thought, law and politics, international relations, and theories of representation. His research focuses on mapping the historical and contemporary political uses of ignorance and asks if practices of ignorance can help maintain political order, democratic politics, international relations, and serve other desirable objectives. How has the enforcement of ignorance of certain differences between individuals and groups in the past and the present time engendered a sense of community, un/equal opportunities, and affected the ability of some to rule over others? His research on the production and uses of ignorance appears in the Routledge International Handbook of Ignorance Studies, Philosophy and Social Criticism, Journal of International Political Theory, and Constellations. During his 2018-2020 Fellowship, Lev will examine how democratic regimes incorporate practices of ignorance. The objective is to formulate recommendations for cultivating ignorance conducive to democratic decision-making, political participation, and protection of minority rights and vulnerable groups.
Democracy Promotion: Canada’s Contributions and Prospects
This research project aims to understand: What are the main features of Canadian democracy promotion? How did the initiatives of U.S. democracy promotion impact Canada’s initial democracy promotion involvements? What was Canada's motivation in founding the International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development, later renamed Rights and Democracy? How do the Harper and Trudeau governments differentiate on democracy promotion? What is the future of Canada’s democracy promotion?
Canada has played a significant role in democracy promotion since the 1980's as a liberal democratic state and part of the Western World. Taking into consideration both the Mulroney government and Harper government’s approaches towards democracy promotion, Canada’s waning engagement on democracy promotion seemed to change when the Trudeau government put more emphasis on democracy supporting institutions. However, creating a new agency committed to democracy promotion is still not on the Canadian government's agenda. Therefore, this project critically analyzes the concept of democracy promotion and Canada’s role in democracy promotion by focusing on past practices, operations of organizations, and discourses of governments.
Multicultural Nationalism: Political Belonging and Community for Diverse States
During his time with the Centre, Clayton Chin focused on completing two papers addressing the question of reconsidering the nature of political community under conditions of diverse cultural populations. The first paper focused on the concept of belonging, examining its treatment in critical and normative literatures, and reconciling them through a model of “multicultural belonging”. The second paper re-examined the relationship between multiculturalism and nationalism, outlining the space and conditions for a multicultural form of nationalism. Both are part of a larger theoretical and empirical project entitled Multicultural Nationalism: Political Belonging and Identity in the Age of Diversity.