Department of Political Science and the College
James Lindley Wilson’s research interests span political philosophy, ethics, and law. Most of his work focuses on normative democratic theory, including the moral evaluation of democracy and questions of what democratic ideals require of citizens and institutions. His book manuscript, “Finding Time for Democracy: A Theory of Political Equality,” attempts to articulate the moral force of the democratic idea that all citizens are equal political authorities and to explain how that abstract idea ought to regulate the design and operation of political institutions, such as elections and representative systems. His work aims to address practical political controversies and to provide a deeper understanding of democracy’s value and its close relation to other ideals of social, economic, and racial equality.
Wilson also researches election law and the history of political thought, including the work of Aristotle, Hobbes, Kant, and the Federalists. He has published articles in the American Political Science Review, Review of Politics, and Representation.
He earned his undergraduate degree in social studies from Harvard University, as well as a PhD in politics from Princeton University and a JD from Yale Law School. While at Yale, he was the recipient of the Jerome Sayles Hess Prize for International Law.