Dr Jonathan Seglow

Educational background

BA University of Oxford

MSc London School of Economics

PhD University of Manchester

Personal profile

I have taught at Royal Holloway since January 2000, a long time ago. My PhD (from the University of Manchester) was on the topic of liberal neutrality and liberal political philosophy which continues to be the paradigm through which I’ve researched other areas.

I was co-editor of the journal Res Publica from 2006-12.  Res Publica is published by Springer on behalf of the Association for Social and Political Philosophy.  Since 2015, I’ve been Chair of the Association.

For many years I’ve taught the second year course in Contemporary Political Theory, as well as more specialised third year and Master’s level courses.  In 2019-20, I’m looking forward to teaching a new third year course in freedom of speech reflecting my developing research interests in that area – see below.

I’ve (co-)/supervised six PhD students to successful completion and am always interested to hear from potential PhD students.

Research interests

My research interests are in contemporary political theory, both in its philosophical and more applied aspects, along with some bits of moral philosophy. 

My book Defending Associative Duties explored defended the idea that we owe special duties to people such as friends, family members and fellow citizens with whom we share a relationship. Since then, I’ve written a chapter on parents’ duties to be partial to their children’s interests for the recently published Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Childhood and Children.  I also have an as yet unpublished paper on duties between siblings – not a topic anyone has ever written about to my knowledge.

I’ve also worked for some years on religion and political theory. Andrew Shorten (University of Limerick) and I are co-editing a book, Religion and Political Theory which is forthcoming with Rowman & Littlefield International in 2019, and I’m writing two papers on religious liberty, one on sacred spaces and one on religious discrimination. A short blog post on the latter is here

Matteo Bonotti (Monash University) and I are doing some work together on freedom of speech.  A textbook on the topic is under contract with Polity for publication in 2020, and we’ve also co-authored a paper on religiously offensive speech.

Recent and draft papers are on my academia.edu page.



  • PR2490: Contemporary Political Theory (course co-leader)
  • PR3560: The Politics of Toleration (course leader)
  • PR3570: Social Justice: from theory to practice (course leader)


  • PR5416: Political Concepts (course leader)
  • PR5916: Human Rights (course leader)

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