Lenzner CV

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2003 Harvard University, Ph.D. in Government. Dissertation: “Leo Strauss and the Problem of Freedom of Thought”

1988 Cornell University, B. A., cum laude in Government


Research Fellow in Political Philosophy & Director of the Leo Strauss Project, Henry Salvatori Center, Claremont McKenna College, 2005-present

Post-doctoral Fellow, Tel Aviv University, 2005

Golda Meir Post-doctoral Fellow, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 2004

Madison Fellow, Princeton University, Fall 2003

Associate Editor, The Good Society, 2002-2005

Research Fellow, The New Citizenship Project, 2001-2002.

Teaching Fellow, Harvard University, spring and winter 1995, winter 1997, spring and winter 1998, spring and winter 1999, winter 2000, spring 2001.

Led sections in “The American Political Novel” (Government 1075), “Democracy and Inequality,” (Moral Reasoning 17), “The History of Modern Political Theory” (Government 1061) and “Liberalism and Conservatism in American Political Thought” (Government 1091). Taught 10 classes of the department’s required tutorial for sophomores, “Constitutional Democracy in America” (Government 97). Designed and taught a junior tutorial entitled “The Quarrel Between the Ancients and the Moderns.”

Rapporteur and participant for “The Achievement of Edward Banfield,” a conference sponsored by the Henry Salvatori Center, May 7-9, 1999.

Conference coordinator, rapporteur and participant for “The Achievement of Leo Strauss,” a conference sponsored by the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, October 16-18, 1997.

In addition to writing the conference report, selected readings and session topics, wrote proposal and made various arrangements for conference director Charles Kesler. Report subsequently published as The Achievement of Leo Strauss (Henry Salvatori Monograph, New Series, No. 1, January 2000, 46 pp.).

Research Analyst, Hudson Institute, 1989-1992.

Primary task was to assist Mark Blitz on a project investigating the character and institutions of American political and professional life.


Work in Progress:

The Problem of Leo Strauss (William Kristol, co-author); book commissioned by Oxford University Press.

Scholarly Essays:

“Strauss’s Burke Reconsidered.” Forthcoming in The Arts of Rule (Rowman & Littlefield, 2008).

“Jewish Voices, Jewish Influence and Neoconservatism” (Yossi Shain, co-author) Jewish Civilization, Jewish Thought and Philosophy (Georgetown University Program on Jewish Civilization Occasional Papers, Summer 2005) pp. 18-33.

*“Leo Strauss: An Introduction” (William Kristol, co-author), Perspectives on Political Science (Fall 2004–a revised and enlarged version of “What Was Leo Strauss Up To?”), pp. 204-214.

“Symposium Introduction: Leo Strauss.” Perspectives on Political Science (Fall 2004), p 196.

“What Was Leo Strauss Up To?” (William Kristol, co-author), The Public Interest (Fall 2003), pp. 19-39.

*“A Literary Exercise in Self-Knowledge: Leo Strauss’s Twofold Interpretation of Maimonides,” Perspectives on Political Science (Fall 2002), pp. 225-234.

* “A Cinematic Call to Self-Knowledge: An Interpretation of Miller’s Crossing,” Perspectives on Political Science (Spring 2001), pp. 85-92.

* “Strauss’s Farabi, Scholarly Prejudice and Philosophic Politics,” Perspectives on Political Science (Fall 1999), pp. 94-102.

“Leo Strauss and His Contemporaries,” The Political Science Reviewer (1993 annual issue), pp. 124-156.

* “Strauss’s Three Burkes: The Problem of Edmund Burke in Natural Right and History,” Political Theory (August 1991), pp. 364-391.

Essays marked by an * were peer-reviewed.

Articles and Reviews:

“Crime Pays,” a review essay on the novelists Donald Westlake and Bill James, The Weekly Standard, September 1st, 2008, pp. 37-41.

“Empathy, Anyone?,” The Weekly Standard, January 28, 2008.

“Comments on [Mark Blitz’s] Duty Bound: Responsibility and American Political Life,The Good Society (Vol. 16 No. 1, 2007) pp. 66-68.

“An Unsurpassed Scholar: Muhsin S. Mahdi, 1926-2007,” The Weekly Standard, September3, 2007.

“Guide for the Perplexed,” a review essay of some recent books on Strauss, The Claremont Review of Books. Spring 2007.

“Becoming Leo Strauss,” a review essay of Heinrich Meier’s Leo Strauss and the Theologico-Political Problem, The Weekly Standard, April 17, 2006.

“Love at Langley,” a review of Claire Berlinski’s Loose Lips: A Novel, The Weekly Standard, December 1, 2003.

“Leo Strauss and the Detective Story,” Claremont Review of Books, Summer 2003.

“Crime & Punishment?: Bill James's Unconventional Mystery Novels,” a review essay of Bill James’s Naked at the Window, The Weekly Standard, June 30, 2003, pp. 31-33.

“Leo Strauss and the Conservatives,” a review essay of Willmoore Kendall: Maverick of American Conservatives, edited by John Alvis and John Murley, Policy Review, April & May, 2003, pp.75-82.

“A Thinker’s Progress,” a review of Leo Strauss: The Early Writings: 1921-1932, edited and translated by Michael Zank, National Review, September 16, 2002, pp. 53-54.

“The Dictator’s Dotage,” a review of Mario Vargas Llosa’s The Feast of the Goat, The Weekly Standard, December 17, 2001, pp. 34-35.

“The American Comedy,” a review essay on Donald E. Westlake, The Weekly Standard, July 2, 2001, pp. 33-39.

“Judaism and Enlightenment,” a review of Ralph Lerner’s Maimonides’ Empire of Light and Ruth Wisse’s The Modern Jewish Cannon, The Weekly Standard, January 1, 2001, pp. 35-37.

“Strauss Among the Straussians: Leo Strauss and America,” a review of Leo Strauss, the Straussians and the American Regime, edited by Kenneth Deutsch and John Murley. The Weekly Standard, August 28, 2000, pp. 35-37.

“The Problem of Happiness Today,” The Good Society, Fall 1999, pp. 52-54.

“Two Cheers for Postmodernism,” a review of Peter Lawler’s Postmodernism, Rightly Understood: The Return to Realism in American Thought,” The Weekly Standard, October 25, 1999, pp. 36-38.

“Injudicious Distortions,” a review of Jeremy Rabkin’s Judicial Compulsions: How Public Law Distorts Public Policy, Regulation (fall 1990), pp. 80-83.

Various brief reviews in The Weekly Standard’s “Standard Reader” on Liberalism, Harvard, Plato, Leo Strauss, Spinoza, Xenophon, Carol O’Connell Donald E. Westlake, and Michael Connelly from December 2001 to May 2005.


“How to Study Leo Strauss,” A paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association on a panel entitled “Leo Strauss and the Art of Writing” in the “Politics and Literature” pision, August 2003.

“Author as Educator: Leo Strauss’s Twofold Treatment of Maimonides and Machiavelli,” a paper presented at the at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association on a panel entitled “New Studies on Leo Strauss,” September 2002.

“The Medieval Complication to the Quarrel between the Ancients and Moderns” – presentation on a round-table discussion of Leo Strauss and the question of the ancients and the moderns at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association, September 1999.

“Natural Right Goes to the Movies: An Interpretation of Miller’s Crossing” – a paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association in the “Politics and Literature” pision, September 1998.

“Political Enterprises Ancient and Modern,” a paper presented at the New England Political Science Association, May 1998.

“Leo Strauss’s Politics,” a public lecture delivered at Claremont McKenna College, September 1992.

“Strauss’s Critique of the Ancients,” an essay delivered at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association, September 1992.


Earhart Research Fellowship (Summer-Fall 2003)

Derek Bok Teaching Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Education (Fall 1997, Spring 1998, Fall 2000)

Mellon Completion Fellowship, Harvard University (1996-97)

Mellon Research Fellow, Harvard University (Spring and Summer, 1996)

Earhart Fellow, Harvard University (1992-95, 1997-98)

Salvatori Fellow, The Heritage Foundation (Summer 1991)

Bradley Fellow, The Claremont Graduate School (1988-89)

Publius Fellow, The Claremont Institute (Summer 1987)