Professor Moyn Named One of the World’s Top Thinkers for 2024


Chancellor Kent Professor of Law and History Samuel Moyn has been named one of Prospect magazine’s Top Thinkers for 2024, the magazine announced this week.

The list includes 25 people from around the world chosen by the magazine for work that informs people about “issues of critical global importance” including the climate, economics, freedom, geopolitics, and technology. Moyn was included in the category of top thinkers about freedom.

Through his work, Moyn “won a large fanbase on the left for his searing critiques of liberalism and challenging of conventional narratives,” the magazine wrote.

At Yale Law School, Moyn’s areas of interest in legal scholarship include international law, human rights, the law of war, and legal thought, in both historical and current perspective. In intellectual history, he has worked on a diverse range of subjects, especially 20th-century European moral and political theory.

The magazine wrote that “as a planet and a civilization we are approaching tipping points — some frightening, others freeing — that will transform life as we know it.” The list of individuals on the list are those who will help navigate the world in the year ahead.

In his most recent book Liberalism Against Itself: Cold War Intellectuals and the Making of Our Times (Yale University Press), Moyn looks back at an influential group of liberal intellectuals of the last century and finds in their work where, in his view, today’s liberals go wrong.

“Cold War liberalism was a catastrophe — for liberalism,” Moyn writes.

Moyn has written several books on the history of ideas and politics in the 20th century. His books include Humane: How the United States Abandoned Peace and Reinvented War (2021); Not Enough: Human Rights in an Unequal World (2018), Christian Human Rights (2015), based on Mellon Distinguished Lectures at the University of Pennsylvania in 2014; and The Last Utopia: Human Rights in History (2010). He has written for, or been interviewed by outlets including The New York TimesThe Washington PostThe AtlanticThe New RepublicThe NationCommonweal, and Dissent.