Faculty/Staff Directory

Karen Zivi

Photo of Karen Zivi


Associate Professor-The Frederik Meijer Honors College

HON 127


Field of Study
Political Science


Dr. Karen Zivi is an Associate Professor of Political Science in the Frederik Meijer Honors College at Grand Valley State University where she teaches courses on rights, democracy, and gender and politics.


The Theory and Practice of Rights

Live, Learn, Lead.

Sex, Power, and Politics

Democracy and Political Thinking


Professor Zivi earned a B.A. in Political and Social Thought from the University of Virginia and a Ph. D. in Political Science from Rutgers University, and before joining GVSU, she taught at the University of Richmond, the University of Southern California, and Harvard University.

Professor Zivi’s recent publications include: 

“Dignity at What Cost: Marriage Equality in the United States,” Human Dignity and the Promise of Human Rights, Richard Hiskes, ed., New York: Open Society Foundation, 2015: pp. 48-64.

“Performing the Nation: Contesting Same-Sex Marriage Rights in the United States,” Journal of Human Rights 13(3), 2014: 290-306.

“Doing Things with Hate Speech: A Response to Jeremy Waldron’s The Harm in Hate Speech,” Contemporary Political Theory, 13(1), 2014: 94-100.

“The Practice and the Promise of Making Rights Claims: Lessons from the South African Treatment Action Campaign,” African Legal Theory and Contemporary Problems, Oche Onazi, ed., New York: Springer, 2014: 173-198.

Making Rights Claims: A Practice of Democratic Citizenship, New York: Oxford University Press, 2012.

      Reviewed in American Political Science Review (Dec. 2014) and Political Studies (May 2013).

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