Visit the Museum





Academic Research

Remember Survivors and Victims

Genocide Prevention

Antisemitism and Holocaust Denial

Outreach Programs

Other Museum Websites

< All Fellows and Scholars

Dr. Adam Knowles

Dr. Adam Knowles
2017-2018 Judith B. and Burton P. Resnick Postdoctoral Fellow

“The Philosopher as a Nazi Bureaucrat: Martin Heidegger and National Socialism”

Professional Background

Dr. Adam Knowles is currently assistant teaching Professor in Philosophy at Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He holds a PhD and MA in Philosophy from the New School for Social Research in New York City, New York. He also has his MA in History from Ruprecht-Karls-Universität in Heidelberg, Germany, and his BA in History from University of Texas in Austin. As the Judith B. and Burton P. Resnick Postdoctoral Fellow, at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, Dr. Knowles will be conducting research for his project “The Philosopher as a Nazi Bureaucrat: Martin Heidegger and National Socialism.”

Dr. Knowles can read ancient Greek and Spanish and can lecture in German.

Dr. Knowles is the author of the monograph The Paradox of Silence: Martin Heidegger’s Inverted Politics of Language which is in the process of going under contract. He has also written several book chapters including, “The Politics of Silence in Heidegger’s Black Notebooks,” in Sound and Affect (2017) and “Heidegger’s Anti-Semitism in the Schwarze Hefte,” in Probing the Limits of Categorization: The Bystander in Holocaust History (2017). Dr. Knowles is also the author of several articles, reviews, and lectures. In 2017, Dr. Knowles was invited to present “Heidegger as a Nazi Bureaucrat” at the Netherlands Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies (NIOD) and at the Duitsland Instituut in Amsterdam, In 2017, he presented his paper, “Hospitality’s Downfall: Kant, Cosmopolitanism and Refugees” at the American Philosophical Association, Eastern Division, in Baltimore, Maryland. He has also been the recipient of several fellowships and awards throughout his career.

Fellowship Research

While in residence at the Mandel Center, Dr. Knowles initiated research on the relationship between philosophy and authoritarian regimes by focusing on Martin Heidegger and his university-town milieu. Drawing on the Museum's resources, he sought to examine unexplored archival material, Heidegger’s recently published Black Notebooks, and his philosophical texts, to allow for a better understanding of Heidegger’s activities as a bureaucrat, to illuminates Heidegger’s role in the administrative history of Freiburg University, and his contribution both as a philosopher and as a bureaucrat to the larger Nazi ideology.

Dr. Knowles was in residence from September 1, 2017, to February 28, 2018.