Professor James Martin

Staff details

Position Professor of Political Theory
Email j.martin (
Phone +44 (0)20 7919 7754
Professor James Martin

James' research focuses on political theories, rhetoric, and interpretive political analysis. He has published widely on radical political ideas and thinkers in Italy and France, and on methods of rhetorical analysis. In 2010-15 he was co-editor of the journal, Contemporary Political Theory.

Academic qualifications

  • PhD on the political thought of Antonio Gramsci. University of Bristol 1994
  • MA in Political Thought. University of Kent 1989
  • BA (Hons), Politics and Sociology. University of East Anglia 1988

Research interests

Much of James' work is concerned with how the critical analysis of politics can be informed by interpretive approaches to 'subjective' meaning and experience. This has brought him into contact with theories of culture and ideology, rhetoric, emotions, as well as a range of post-phenomenological philosophies. In his early research, he explored these themes in relation to the broad Gramscian tradition of political analysis. More recently, he has concentrated on the analysis of political speech, publishing his book, Politics and Rhetoric, in 2014. In 2013-15, he was a Leverhulme Research Fellow exploring affects and political rhetoric. That project led to his book, Psychopolitics of Speech (2019), which employed Lacanian approaches to psychoanalysis to think about public speech as a means to incite and manage desire. He has recently written a short book, Hegemony (2022), on the different uses of that concept in political theory and analysis. Currently, he is working on post-secular politics and political theologies. Between 2010 and 2020, James convened the Rhetoric, Discourse and Politics Specialist Group of the UK Political Studies Association.

Publications and research outputs


Martin, James. 2022. Hegemony. Cambridge: Polity Press. ISBN 9781509521616

Martin, James. 2019. Psychopolitics of Speech: Uncivil Discourse and the Excess of Desire. Bielefeld, Germany: Transcript Verlag. ISBN 9783837639193

Martin, James. 2013. Politics and Rhetoric: A Critical Introduction. Oxon: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-70667-4

Martin, James. 2008. Piero Gobetti and the Politics of Liberal Revolution. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 9780230602748

Bastow, Steve and Martin, James. 2003. Third Way Discourse: European Ideologies in the Twentieth Century. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 0748615601

Martin, James. 1998. Gramsci’s Political Analysis: A Critical Introduction. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-0312212438

Edited Book

Martin, James; Atkins, Judi; Finlayson, Alan and Turnbull, Nick, eds. 2014. Rhetoric in British Politics and society. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 9781137325525

Martin, James, ed. 2013. Chantal Mouffe: Hegemony, Radical Democracy, and the Political. London: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-82522-1

Martin, James, ed. 2008. The Poulantzas Reader: Marxism, Law, and the State. London: Verso. ISBN 978 1 84467 199 1

Martin, James and Carver, Terrell, eds. 2005. Continental Political Thought. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-1403903686

Martin, James and Cowling, Mark, eds. 2002. Marx’s Eighteenth Brumaire: (Post)Modern Interpretations. Pluto press. ISBN 978-0745318318

Martin, James, ed. 2001. Antonio Gramsci: Critical Assessments of Leading Political Philosophers: Critical Assessments of Political Philosophers: 4 volume set. Routledge. ISBN 978-0415217477

Book Section

Martin, James. 2022. Marx's Rhetoric. In: Dilip Gaonkar and Keith Topper, eds. The Oxford Handbook of Rhetoric and Political Theory. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780190220945

Martin, James. 2018. Rhetoric and the Emotions. In: Andreas Hetzel and Gerald Posselt, eds. Handbuch Rhetorik und Philosophie [Handbook of Rhetoric and Philosophy]. 9 Germany: Walter De Gruyter Mouton, pp. 607-623. ISBN 978-3-11-031819-7

Martin, James. 2018. Intersecting Planes: Futurism, Fascism, and Gramsci. In: J. London, ed. One Hundred Years of Futurism: Aesthetics, Politics and Performance. Bristol UK: Intellect Ltd, pp. 79-99. ISBN 9781783208425

Martin, James. 2015. The Rhetoric of the Manifesto. In: Terrell Carver and James Farr, eds. The Cambridge Companion to The Communist Manifesto. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University press, pp. 50-66. ISBN 9781107037007

Martin, James. 2015. Morbid Symptoms: Gramsci and the Crisis of Liberalism. In: Mark McNally, ed. Antonio Gramsci. Basingstoke: Palgrave, pp. 34-51. ISBN 9781137334176

Martin, James. 2010. A post-secular faith: Connolly on pluralism and evil. In: , ed. Democracy and Pluralism: The political thought of William Connolly. London: Routledge, pp. 129-143. ISBN 9780415473507


Martin, James and Newman, Saul. 2023. Recontesting the Sacred: political theology as ideological method. Journal of Political Ideologies, ISSN 1356-9317

Martin, James. 2023. Rhetoric, death, and the politics of memory. Critical Discourse Studies, 20(5), pp. 477-490. ISSN 1740-5904

Martin, James. 2022. Rhetoric, Discourse and the Hermeneutics of Public Speech. Politics, 42(2), pp. 170-184. ISSN 0263-3957

Hatzisavvidou, Sophia and Martin, James. 2022. Introduction to the special issue: Rhetorical approaches to contemporary political studies. Politics, 42(2), pp. 149-155. ISSN 0263-3957

Martin, James. 2019. The risks of hermeneutic politics. Iride: filosofia e discussione pubblica, XXXII(87), pp. 415-424. ISSN 1122-7893

Martin, James. 2019. The Post-Marxist Gramsci. Global Discourse, 9(2), pp. 305-321. ISSN 2326-9995

Martin, James. 2018. Seeing voices: cinema, rhetoric, and subjectivity. Redescriptions: Political Thought, Conceptual History and Feminist Theory, 21(1), pp. 7-22. ISSN 2308-0914

Martin, James. 2016. Capturing Desire: Rhetorical Strategies and the Affectivity of Discourse. British Journal of Politics and International Relations, 18(1), pp. 143-160. ISSN 1369-1481

Martin, James. 2015. Situating Speech: A Rhetorical Approach to Political Strategy. Political Studies, 63(1), pp. 25-42. ISSN 0032-3217

Martin, James. 2012. Gramsci and Gobetti: a case of elective affinity. Journal of Romance Studies, 12(3), pp. 78-89. ISSN 1473–3536

Martin, James. 2010. A radical freedom? Gianni Vattimo's ‘emancipatory nihilism’. Contemporary Political Theory, 9(3), pp. 325-344. ISSN 1470-8914

Martin, James. 2009. Ontology and law in the early Poulantzas. History of European Ideas, 35(4), pp. 465-474. ISSN 0191-6599

Martin, James and Finlayson, Alan. 2008. 'It Ain't What You Say ...': British Political Studies and the Analysis of Speech and Rhetoric. British Politics, 3(4), pp. 445-464. ISSN 1746-918X

Martin, James. 2007. Piero Gobetti and the rhetoric of liberal anti-fascism. History of the Human Sciences, 20(4), pp. 107-127. ISSN 09526951

Martin, James. 2006. Piero Gobetti's Agonistic Liberalism. History of European Ideas, 32(2), pp. 205-222. ISSN 01916599

Martin, James. 2005. Ideology and Antagonism in Modern Italy: Poststructuralist Reflections. Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy, 8(2), pp. 145-160. ISSN 13698230

Martin, James. 2002. The Political logic of discourse: a neo-Gramscian view. History of European Ideas, 28, pp. 21-31. ISSN 0191-6599


Martin, James. 2020. Facing The Enemy: Is Wartime Language Useful For Fighting Coronavirus? (Video intervention). Huffington Post.

Further profile content

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