Jonathan Graubart

Jonathan Graubart

Office: NH 119 | Email: [email protected]

Jonathan Graubart is a professor of political science at San Diego State. He specializes in the areas of international relations, international law, Zionism and Jewish dissent, Israel-Palestine, the UN, normative theory, and resistance politics. Graubart received his Ph.D. in political science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2002 and his JD from UC Berkeley Law School in 1989.

Graubart’s recent book is Jewish Self-Determination beyond Zionism: Lessons from Hannah Arendt and other Pariahs (Temple University Press 2023). Richard Falk describes it as “An exciting, profound, and humane critical rethinking of Zionism as the ideological foundation of the Israeli state, Graubart’s alternative vision reinforces what Zionism might have become if its leaders had not opted for an exclusivist Jewish state necessitating the continuous repression, exploitation, and discrimination of the Palestinian people in their own homeland. The recent surge to the Israeli far right gives this fine book a timely urgency, especially for liberal Jews, who should be deeply disturbed by what has happened in Israel beneath the banner of Zionism.”

Graubart is the author of Legalizing Transnational Activism: The Struggle to Gain Social Change from NAFTA’s Citizen Petitions (Penn State University Press, 2008). His recent articles include “Reimagining Zionism and Coexistence after Oslo’s Death: Lessons from Hannah Arendt” (Arendt Studies Quarterly, 2019), “David in Goliath’s Citadel: Mobilizing the Security Council’s Normative Power for Palestine” (European Journal of International Relations 2016, co-authored with Arturo Jimenez-Bacardi), and “War is Not the Answer: R2P and Military Intervention,” (part of an edited volume by Cambridge University Press on Responsibility to Protect, 2015).

Prior to academia, Graubart experienced a varied professional career, which includes working for President Ronald Reagan (as an attorney at the US Treasury Department) and for Michael Lerner (as an editorial staff member at Tikkun Magazine). As a San Francisco attorney, Graubart engaged in plaintiff's-side civil litigation against perpetrators of securities fraud (his first case being against Walt Disney) and worked pro bono in the areas of poverty law and asylum law for political refugees from Central America.

Graubart has pursued a number of professional interests in his life. He was a fisherman, a factory worker, and a circus promoter (though he never succeeded at his attempts to develop a juggling act). He has vague memories of writing sermons for his birth father, an itinerant Baptist preacher (sometimes getting ideas from his adopted father, a rabbi).