Nomi Claire Lazar

Social Sciences (Politics)

Associate Professor of Social Sciences (Politics)
Associate Dean of Faculty (Curriculum)


View Curriculum Vitae

Associate Professor Nomi Claire Lazar is a political theorist and the author of a variety of books and articles in the areas of political thought, legal theory and public policy. Raised in a politically engaged family in Canada’s capital city, Ottawa, Assoc Prof Lazar has strong interests in rhetoric, strategy and political ethics, and with the ways in which institutions and rules interact with individual choices.

Assoc Prof Lazar holds a BA (Hons) in Philosophy from Trinity College, University of Toronto. After completing an MA in Legal and Political Theory at the School of Public Policy, University College London, she worked in the Criminal Law Policy section of the Department of Justice, Canada. She has also worked for and consulted with governments in the areas of conservation and regulatory policy. In 2005, Assoc Prof Lazar completed a PhD in Political Science from Yale University with a dissertation on emergency powers and crisis government. She served as Harper-Schmidt Collegiate Assistant Professor at the University of Chicago (2005 – 2008) and as Canadian Bicentennial Visiting Fellow at Yale University (2008 – 2009) before returning to her hometown of Ottawa where she began teaching at the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs in 2009. Assoc Prof Lazar is an avid traveler, with a longstanding love for Southeast Asia.

Assoc Prof Lazar’s research interests include crisis government and states of emergency; comparative constitutions, particularly constitutional legitimacy and the rhetoric of constitutional preambles; political rhetoric and political symbols; the politics of time and of time technologies; calendar reform in political context; comparative imperial strategy; human rights and corporate social responsibility (CSR); and criminal law policy.

Books (Single Author Monographs)

Out of Joint: Power, Crisis, and the Rhetoric of Time. (Yale University Press, 2019).

States of Emergency in Liberal Democracies. (Cambridge University Press, 2009).

Chapters in Peer Reviewed, Edited Books

“Political Ethics in the State of Emergency,” Edward Hall & Andrew Sabl eds. Political Ethics: The State of the Field (Princeton University Press, Forthcoming)

“What is the State of Exception?” States of Exception in American History, G. Gerstle and J.M. Goodwin eds. (University of Chicago Press, Forthcoming 2020)

“Constitutional Preambles and the Politics of an Uncertain Future,” Lyana Francot & Luigi Corrias eds. Temporality and the Law (Routledge, 2018)

“Decision and Decisionism,” Daniel Bessner & Nicolas Guilhot eds. The Decisionist Imagination: Sovereignty, Social Science, and Democracy in the 20th Century (Berghahn, 2018)

“Prerogative Power in Rome: Flexible Modes for a Flexible Order”, Extra-Legal Power and Legitimacy, Kleinerman, Benjamin & Clement Fatovic, (Oxford University Press, 2013).

“A Topography of Emergency Power,” in Victor V. Ramraj ed, Emergencies and the Limits of Legality. (Cambridge University Press, 2008).

Rawnsley, David and Nomi Lazar “Managing the Universal Service Obligation,”in Michael Crew and Paul Kleindorfer eds. Emerging Competition in Postal and Delivery Services. (Kluwer, 1999).

Peer Reviewed Journal Articles

“Why Rome Didn’t Bark in the Night: Some Thoughts on Crisis Government and Constitutional Flexibility”, Polity, Vol. 45 No. 3, July 2013.

“Making Emergencies Safe for Democracy: The Roman Dictatorship and the Rule of Law in the Study of Crisis Government,” Constellations, Vol. 13, No. 4, December 2006, pp. 506-521.

“Must Exceptionalism Prove the Rule? An Angle on Emergency Government in the History of Political Thought,” Politics and Society, Vol. 34, No. 2, June 2006, pp. 245-275.

Review Essays

“Karin Loevy’s ‘Emergencies in Public Law’” International Journal of Constitution Law Vol. 16 No. 1, May 2018.

“Combatting Political Extremism”, Perspectives on Politics. Vol. 13, No. 3, September 2015.

“States of War and Captives of Sovereignty,” Perspectives on Politics. Vol. 10, No. 4, December 2012.

“The Everyday Problem of Emergency,” University of Toronto Law Journal. Vol. 59, No. 2, April 2009.

“Three Gestures Toward Justice,” Political Theory, Vol. 35, No. 5, October 2006, pp. 659-665.

Encyclopedia Article

“Carl Schmitt,” in Scribner’s Encyclopedia of Europe 1914-2004, Edited by Jay Winter and John Merriman. (New York: Macmillan, 2006).

Human Rights
Political Concepts
Global Approaches to Crime and Punishment
Philosophy and Political Thought II
Modern Social Thought