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Bettina Koch

Bettina Koch, Professor

Bettina Koch, Professor
Bettina Koch, Professor

Department of Political Science
507 Major Williams Hall (0130)
220 Stanger Street
Blacksburg, VA 24061
540-231-5766 |

Professor Koch’s research interests focus on the history of political thought, in particular medieval and early modern political theory, and comparative political theory, focusing on the comparison of Western and Middle Eastern/Islamic political concepts. One further research interest is the influence of religion on politics and the interaction between the two, and violence and terrorism from a political theory perspective, including questions of state violence and terrorism but also surveillance and security/freedom related issues as topics in (democratic) political theory.

For further information, please visit  Dr. Bettina Koch’s personal website.

  • Political Theory
  • History of Political Thought 
  • (Cross-Cultural) Comparative Political Theory
  • Islamic Political Thought
  • Dr. phil., Political Science, Hochschule Vechta
  • MA, Medieval and Modern History/Political Science, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster
  • e-International Relation Board Member 
  • ATINER: Head of Politics & International Affairs Research Unit
  • Caltech-Huntington Humanities Collaborations Fellowship, The Huntington, San Marino, CA, and California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA, 2016–17
  • Visiting Associate in the Humanities, California Institute of Technology, 2016–17


Patterns Legitimizing Political Violence in Transcultural Perspectives: Islamic and Christian Traditions and Legacies(Berlin/Boston: De Gruyter, 2015), ISBN 978-1614515661.

Patterns Legitimizing Political Violence in Transcultural Perspectives: Islamic and Christian Traditions and Legacies [paperback edition] (Berlin/Boston: De Gruyter, 2016) ISBN 978-1614515777.

Zur Dis-/Kontinuität mittelalterlichen politischen Denkens in der neuzeitlichen politischen Theorie: Marsilius von Padua, Johannes Althusius und Thomas Hobbes im Vergleich (Beiträge zur Politischen Wissenschaft 137; Duncker & Humblot: Berlin, 2005).

Regional Security in the Middle East: Sectors, Variables and Issues (Bristol: e-International Relations, 2019), ISBN 978-1910814512.

Totalitäre Herrschaft und republikanische Demokratie. 50 Jahre ‘The Origins of Totalitarianism’ von Hannah Arendt, ed. Antonia Grunenberg, with the assistance of Stefan Ahrens and Bettina Koch (Hannah‐Arendt Studien 1; Peter Lang: Frankfurt/M., New York, 2003).

Bettina Koch and Cary J. Nederman (eds.), Inventing Modernity in Medieval European Thought, ca. 1100 – ca. 1550 (Kalamazoo: Medieval Institute Publications,  Western Michigan University, 2019). ISBN 978-1-58044-349-4.

Bettina Koch (ed.), State Terror, State Violence – Global Perspectives (Springer: Wiesbaden, 2016).

Journal Articles

“Das monarchische arcana imperii Prinzip versus das demokratische Transparenzprinzip: Zum Verhältnis von Staat und bürgerlicher Freiheit nach Snowden,” in Staatsgeheimnisse: Arkanpolitik im Wandel der Zeiten, ed. Rüdiger Voigt (Springer: Wiesbaden, 2017), 111-130.

“US-Drone Strikes: Acts of Terror, Violence, or Coercion?” In State Terror, State Violence – Global Perspectives (Springer: Wiesbaden, 2016), 151-170.

“Citizenship in the Age of Global Surveillance: Some Observations on a Transforming State-Citizen Relationship,” in Deconstructing Global Citizenship: Political, Cultural, and Ethical Perspectives, ed. Hassan Bashir and Phillip W. Gray (Lanham: Lexington, 2015), 77-97.

“Against Empire? John of Paris’s Defence of Territorial Secular Power Considered in the Context of Dante’s and Marsilius of Padua’s Political Theories,” in John of Paris: Beyond Royal and Papal Power, ed. Chris Jones (Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2015), 49-74.

“Religious Dissent in Premodern Islam: Political Usage of Heresy and Apostasy in Nizam al-Mulk and Ibn Taymiyya,” in Religion, Power and Resistance from the Eleventh to the Sixteenth Centuries: Playing the Heresy Card, ed. Karen Bollermann, Thomas M. Izbicki, and Cary J. Nederman (Houndmills: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014), 215-236.

“Liberation Theologies, Periphery Existence, and Global Challenges: Towards a Transcultural Ideology of Liberation,” Athens Journal of Social Sciences 1:3 (2014): 173‐184.

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