Arthur Duhé

Research Topic:

A Spinozist Affect Theory of Revolutionary Diffusion
International Relations Network
Balliol College
DPhil International Relations

My research lies at the intersection of international relations, political theory, and history, with a particular emphasis on the relationship between power and emotions to examine how collective emotions can create, shape, and undermine diverse forms of communities.

My doctoral project examines how revolutions spread beyond their borders, without any political, military, or financial coordination, by looking at national and transnational circulations of affects. First, turning to Spinoza’s theory of affects, I argue that affective circulations are triggered by a psychological mechanism coined as affective imitation. Investigating further the power-affect nexus, I then examine how these affective circulations can be empowering, by setting people into motion and making them act together, or disempowering, by preventing them from acting and isolating them from each other.

Second, I apply this Spinozist conceptual apparatus to two empirical cases, namely the Spring of the Peoples and the Arab Spring. My analysis centres upon two notions: national, revolutionary, and even human ‘fraternity’ as a key to understand how both revolutions triggered nationalistic and internationalist feelings at the same time; and ‘revolutionary martyrdom’ to show how it sparks national and transnational indignation, explaining thus the paradoxical impact of repression.. 


  • Visiting Graduate at the Centre Européen de Sociologie et de Science politique
  • Visiting Graduate Student in Politics & International Relations at Columbia University
  • Erasmus student in Human, Social & Political Sciences at King's College, University of Cambridge
  • M.A. in History of Philosophy at the Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris I)
  • Scholarship at the Ecole Normale Supérieure de la rue d'Ulm, department of philosophy (ENS Ulm, Paris) as Elève normalien 
  • B.A. in Philosophy at Khâgne classique, Lycée Fénelon (Paris)
  • B.A. in Dramaturgy at Khâgne classique, Lycée Fénelon (Paris)


Areas of expertise

  • International Relations theory;
  • Political Theory;
  • Affect theory;
  • Revolution theory;
  • Critical Theory;
  • History of Political Thought 

Research interests

  • Political Theory,
  • Groups, Identities and Social Movements,
  • Political thought and ideologies,
  • Emotions,
  • Identity,
  • International relations,
  • Power,
  • Revolution,
  • Socialism


My teaching specialism, interests and experience is as follows:

  • Assistant Lecturer at Brookes University - Researching Politics and International Relations (2017 & 2018)
  • Tutor for Visiting Students at Hertford College - Aristotle's Political Thought; Plato's Republic
  • Tutor for Visiting Students at the University of Georgia Program - Special Topics in International Relations (Emotions in International Affairs)

I am interested in teaching related to International Relations Theory, History of Political Thought, and Political Philosophy.


  • French (native);
  • Reunionese (native);
  • Latin (reading only);
  • English (fluent);
  • German (intermediary);
  • Spanish (intermediary)
Arthur Duhé