Lucia M. Rafanelli

Lucia M. Rafanelli
Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Affairs
Monroe Hall 479
[email protected]

Areas of Expertise

Political theory; contemporary political theory; theories of human rights and global justice; collective agency and collective personhood

Current Research

The global political arena is diverse and dynamic, alive with multitudes of state and non-state actors striving to influence each other with every tool at their disposal. We need a political theory of global politics to help us navigate this arena in all its complexity. And this requires moving beyond the field’s traditional focus on states engaging in global politics by waging wars or employing other conventional tools of coercive foreign policy. Professor Rafanelli’s book, Promoting Justice Across Borders: The Ethics of Reform Intervention, takes on this task. It addresses topics such as toleration, legitimacy, collective self-determination, and the perils of activism in a non-ideal world to develop an ethics of foreign political influence well-suited to our geopolitical moment.

Professor Rafanelli is currently working on a project about the ethics of resistance. She also has research interests in corporate agency and corporate personhood and the ethical issues surrounding the use of artificial intelligence.


2018: Ph.D. in Politics, Princeton University

2015: M.A. in Politics, Princeton University

2013: B.A. in Government and Philosophy, Cornell University (magna cum laude in Government, distinction in all subjects)


As of 30 August 2021:

Promoting Justice Across Borders: The Ethics of Reform Intervention (New York: Oxford University Press, 2021)

Peer-Reviewed Articles
“Promoting Justice Across Borders,” Political Studies 69, 2 (2021): 237-56, doi: 10.1177/0032321719875402

“A Defense of Individualism in the Age of Corporate Rights,” The Journal of Political Philosophy 25, 3 (2017): 281-302, doi: 10.1111/jopp.12112

Invited Contributions & Book Reviews

"Toleration and Political Change,” (2021, doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-03227-2_57-1) in Mitja Sardo─Ź ed., The Palgrave Handbook of Toleration (Palgrave Macmillan, forthcoming)

“Toward an Individualist Postcolonial Cosmopolitanism,” contribution to a symposium on Adom Getachew’s Worldmaking After Empire: The Rise and Fall of Self- Determination (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2019), Millennium: Journal of International Studies (2020), doi: 10.1177/0305829820935520

Review of C.A.J. Coady, Ned Dobos, and Sagar Sanyal eds., Challenges for Humanitarian Intervention: Ethical Demand & Political Reality (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018), Journal of Moral Philosophy 17, 2 (2020): 229-32, doi: 10.1163/17455243-01702005

Office Hours

Tuesdays 10 am - 12 pm, or by appointment

Classes Taught

Obligation, Obedience, and Power (undergraduate level)

Global Justice (graduate and undergraduate level)

The Ethics of Foreign Aid (graduate level)