Dennis C. Rasmussen

Professor, Political Science

Dennis Rasmussen faculty pg

Contact Information

313B Maxwell Hall
(315) 443-5877
Curriculum Vitae
Dennis Rasmussen CV


Ph.D., Duke University, 2005


Political theory, history of political thought


Political Theory
Capitalism, For and Against
Foundations of American Political Thought
The Creation of the U.S. Constitution



Dennis C. Rasmussen is a political theorist whose research focuses on the Enlightenment, the American founding, and the virtues and shortcomings of liberal democracy and market capitalism. He received his Ph.D. from Duke University in 2005 and his B.A. from Michigan State University’s James Madison College in 2000, and he has also held positions at Tufts University, the University of Houston, Brown University, and Bowdoin College. He is the author of Fears of a Setting Sun: The Disillusionment of America's Founders, which is forthcoming with Princeton University Press in 2021; The Infidel and the Professor: David Hume, Adam Smith, and the Friendship That Shaped Modern Thought(Princeton University Press, 2017), which was shortlisted for the Ralph Waldo Emerson Award and named a best book of the year by The Guardian, Bloomberg, Project Syndicate, Australian Book Review, and Five BooksThe Pragmatic Enlightenment: Recovering the Liberalism of Hume, Smith, Montesquieu, and Voltaire (Cambridge University Press, 2014); and The Problems and Promise of Commercial Society: Adam Smith’s Response to Rousseau (Penn State University Press, 2008), which received an honorable mention for the Delba Winthrop Award. He is also the editor of Adam Smith and the Death of David Hume: The “Letter to Strahan” and Related Texts(Lexington, 2018) and a co-editor of Adam Smith and Rousseau: Ethics, Politics, Economics (Edinburgh University Press, 2018).