Monmouth / Academics / Faculty Profile

Ira Smolensky

Academic Biography:
After completing his B.A., Professor Smolensky attempted to write the great American novel. In order to avoid starving, he worked in a variety of interesting environments, including a bagel bakery, an automotive parts warehouse, the docks of Port Newark, and a factory that manufactured electromagnetic brakes and clutches. In the last venue he met his future wife. She convinced him to pursue a graduate degree. The rest is history. In addition to teaching a dizzying array of courses (all of which attempt to apply political philosophy to real life politics), Smolensky has written extensively for local newspapers and other publications. He has yet to produce the great American novel. But he has written a handful of short stories, a bevy of (alleged) poems, and hundreds of genuinely passionate letters recommending Monmouth College students for law school, graduate programs, and the odd job.

Research Interests:
Political Philosophy and Public Policy

Foreign Policy

Popular Culture and Democratic Theory

Utopian (& Dystopian) Literature

Courses Taught:
POLS100 Visions of Justice
POLS295 Politics of Criminal Justice
POLS310 Politics of Science Fiction
POLS333 U.S. Foreign Policy
POLS375 Environmental Politics
POLS411 Political Philosophy from Plato to Marx
INTG333 Machiavelli and Gandhi

Education:
A.A. Union College (NJ) 1968
B.A. Rutgers University, Newark 1970
M.A. Rutgers, New Brunswick 1976
Ph.D. Rutgers, New Brunswick 1982

Contact Info:
Office: Rm 333 Ctr for Sci & Busi
Email: iras@monmouthcollege.edu