Moshik Temkin

Associate Professor of Public Policy
Harvard Kennedy School
Office Address
Mailing Address
John F. Kennedy School of Government
Mailbox 103
79 JFK Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
Phone: 617-496-1392
Elizabeth Steffen (617-495-5066)
Moshik Temkin


Moshik Temkin, Associate Professor of History and Public Policy, joined the Harvard Kennedy School faculty in 2009. Previously he taught at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris and at Columbia University. A specialist in American international history, with an emphasis on transatlantic politics and policy, he is the author of TheSacco-Vanzetti Affair: America on Trial (Yale University Press, 2011), which was a finalist for the Cundill International Prize, as well as several articles and book chapters. His research interests include the history of the death penalty in comparative perspective, the impact of war on public intellectuals since World War I, Malcolm X's career and politics in a global context, the relationship between American civil rights and global human rights, and the contest between global political activism and travel control since the Cold War. He is currently at work on a book provisionally titled Undesirables: Surveillance, Control, and the Rise and Fall of International Activism, to be published by Harvard University Press.

He received his B.A. at the Hebrew University and his M.A., M.Phil., and Ph.D. in History at Columbia. At Harvard, he is also affiliated with the Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History, the Center for European Studies, and the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs. At the Harvard Kennedy School, he convenes the Harvard Seminar on History and Policy. In 2010-2011, he co-convened the Harvard International and Global History Seminar. As of 2011, he is a Big Think Inaugural Delphi Fellow.

Web Links:

HKS Interview on Tsarnaev, the death penalty, and Boston

HKS Podcast on Viewing Ferguson Through a Global Lens

Essay in the Nation on Ferguson, Human Rights, and American Foreign Affairs

Op Ed in the Los Angeles Times on the Death Penalty

Profile for the History News Network's "Top Young Historians" Feature

Review of The Sacco-Vanzetti Affair in the London Review of Books

Rorotoko interview about The Sacco-Vanzetti Affair

Culture Shocks interview about The Sacco-Vanzetti Affair








  • DPI-720 Leaders and Leadership in History
  • DPI-730 The Past and the Present: Directed Research in History and Public Policy

Not Offered

  • DPI-714 The United States and the World: Politics, Policy, and the Uses of History


For a complete list of faculty citations from 2001 - present, please visit the HKS Faculty Research Connection.

Selected Publication Citations:

  • Academic Journal/Scholarly Articles
    • Temkin, Moshik. "Culture vs. Kultur, or a Clash of Civilizations: Public Intellectuals in the United States and the Great War, 1917-1918." The Historical Journal 58.1 (February 2015): 157-182.
  • Book Chapters
    • Temkin, Moshik. "Malcolm X in France, 1964-1965: Anti-Imperialism and Border Control in the Cold War Era." Decolonization and the Cold War: Negotiating Independence. Ed. Leslie James, and Elisabeth Leake. Bloomsbury Academic, 2015.
  • Commentary
    • Temkin, Moshik. "How to Kill the Death Penalty." Los Angeles Times, May 26, 2014.
  • HKS Faculty Research Working Paper Series
    • Temkin, Moshik. "The Great Divergence: The Death Penalty in the United States and the Failure of Abolition in Transatlantic Perspective." HKS Faculty Research Working Paper Series RWP15-037, July 2015.
  • Magazine and Newspaper Articles
    • Temkin, Moshik. "Ferguson, Human Rights, and America's Interests Abroad." Nation. October 9, 2014.

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