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Claire Katz

Interim Department Head, Teaching, Learning, and Culture
Presidential Professor for Teaching Excellence
Areas of Speciality
  • (979) 847-6129
  • YMCA 402D
Professional Links


Ph.D., Philosophy, University of Memphis (1999)

M.A., Philosophy, University of Memphis (1995)

M.A., Teaching/Philosophy for Children (M.A.T.), Montclair State University (1987)

B.A., Philosophy, University of Maryland, Baltimore County (1986)


Claire Katz is Professor of Philosophy of Education at Texas A&M, where she currently serves as Interim Department Head of Teaching, Learning, and Culture. She has been on the faculty since 2006, and prior to that she was an associate professor of Philosophy and Jewish Studies at Penn State University. From 2019-2022 she served as Associate Dean of Faculties/Associate Vice President for Faculty Affairs. From 2010-2014 she served as Director of Women’s and Gender Studies (Texas A&M). In September 2020 she was named a Presidential Professor for Teaching Excellence (Texas A&M) and in May 2021 she was selected for a Piper Professorship. She teaches and conducts research in two primary areas: (1) the intersection of philosophy, gender, education, and religion and (2) K-12 philosophy.

In 2015, Dr. Katz launched the preK-12 philosophy program, which comprises three prongs: educator workshops for K-12 and university teachers/administrators, which have reached more than one hundred teachers and administrators throughout Texas; training for university students in facilitating philosophical discussions with pre-college students, which includes an undergraduate course that teaches students to teach philosophy to K-12 students; and developing and running a week-long philosophy summer camp (Aggie School of Athens) for 6th-12th graders, which attracts middle and high school students from communities across Texas and around the United States.

She has written extensively on feminist theory, philosophy of religion, philosophy of education, and Emmanuel Levinas’s ethical project. She is the author of Levinas, Judaism, and the Feminine: The Silent Footsteps of Rebecca (Indiana 2003) and the editor of Emmanuel Levinas: Critical Assessments vol. 1-4 (Routledge, 2005). Her 2012 book, Levinas and the Crisis of Humanism (Indiana) explores and responds to theories of education as they emerged in the history of philosophy (e.g., Plato, Locke, Rousseau, Dewey). Her response turns to modern Jewish thought and its alternative views of subjectivity and ethics to challenge our current models of education. Her most recent book, An Introduction to Modern Jewish Philosophy (I.B. Tauris, 2014), provides academics and non-academics an introduction to some of the primary Jewish philosophers in the modern period.  Several features distinguish her book from other introductions: she considers the role of gender within the context of the development of modern Jewish philosophy; she considers the relationship of Jewish philosophy to the western canonical figures that developed at the same time; and finally, she uses literature by Wiesel, Levi, and Amery to consider philosophy’s limitations when confronted with questions about evil. She is currently working on a monograph tentatively titled, Radical Apology: Gender, Religion, and the Limits of Forgiveness (under advance contract with Indiana University Press) with a chapter devoted to The Chicks.

She is the editor of Growing Up with Philosophy Camp: How Thinking Develops Friendship, Community, and a Sense of Self (Rowman and Littlefield, August 2020) and Philosophy Camps for Youth: Everything You Wanted to Know about Starting, Organizing, and Running a Philosophy Camp (Rowman and Littlefield, 2021).

She held the Liberal Arts Cornerstone Faculty Fellowship (Texas A&M 2011-2015) and a Copeland Fellowship (Amherst College 2011-12) and was recently awarded a 2022 Arts and Humanities Fellowship (Texas A&M) and a 2023 Glasscock Center for Humanities Research Residential Fellowship (deferred). She has given more than 150 presentations nationally and internationally. A stalwart defender of the humanities, Dr. Katz presented on the value of the humanities for TEDx TAMU (2015) and in March 2022, she was elected to the Board of Directors for the National Humanities Alliance.

She is the recipient of the 2019 Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement Award (University Level) for Teaching and the 2019 American Philosophical Association Prize for Excellence in Teaching Philosophy. In 2020 she was named a Presidential Professor for Teaching Excellence and in 2021 she was named a Piper Professor in the state of Texas.

A native of Baltimore, MD, she is loyal fan of the Baltimore Orioles.

For more information on P4C Texas:

Research Interests

  • Contemporary French Philosophy
  • Feminist Theory
  • Modern Jewish Thought
  • Philosophy of Education
  • Philosophy of Religion

Office Hours

By appointment