Joanna Wuest

Fund for Reunion-Cotsen Postdoctoral Fellow in the Society of Fellows
Lecturer in the Council of the Humanities and Politics
2019-22 Cohort

Joanna Wuest is a political scientist who studies identity and inequality, American political and constitutional development, political economy, and social theory. She received her Ph.D. in Political Science with a certificate in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies from the University of Pennsylvania in 2019. Her doctoral research was funded in part by the Social Science Research Council and was the recipient of the American Political Science Association's (APSA) 2019 Kenneth Sherrill Award for the Best Dissertation on Sexuality and Politics. Her work has also been awarded the 2019 APSA Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Caucus Best Paper Award. Published work from this and related projects has appeared or is forthcoming in Perspectives on Politics, Politics & Gender, Law & Social Inquiry, and nonsite. Her writing has also appeared in the Nation, Dissent, the Los Angeles Review of Books' Philosophical Salon, Jacobin, and the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Wuest's book manuscript, "Born This Way: Science, Citizenship, and Inequality in the American LGBTQ+ Movement" (advance contract with the University of Chicago Press), is a comprehensive account of the “born this way” phenomenon as it has developed within the LGBTQ+ movement in the U.S. In examining that history, it reveals the consequences of allowing scientific authority to bear so heavily upon questions of identity, rights, and citizenship in American politics and political culture. She is also currently researching and publishing essays for a second book project tentatively titled "Queers & Capital Interests: Gay Liberation in an Age of Inequality."
At Princeton, Wuest holds the Fund for Reunion-Cotsen Postdoctoral Fellowship in LGBT Studies. She is affiliated with the Department of Politics and the Program in Gender and Sexuality Studies. In the fall of 2020, she will teach a Junior Workshop in Politics titled “Class and Inequality” and in the spring of 2021, a new course, supported by Princeton's Council on Science and Technology, titled "The Scientific Study and Politics of Difference."