Robert L’Arrivee

Robert L’Arrivee

Assistant Professor, Politics & International Affairs

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Greetings! My name is Rob L'Arrivee and I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics and International Affairs. Escaping the frozen plains of Canada, I embrace the sweltering heat South Carolina has to offer. I am very happy to be at Furman, especially since my colleagues are wonderful people dedicated to research and teaching new and exciting ideas to students.

I began my academic career studying philosophy at the University of Winnipeg in the hopes of learning more about the relationship between theology and political life. There I encountered Islamic political philosophy through the works of Abu Nasr al-Farabi, a 10th century Muslim philosopher who was the first to unite a wide range of intellectual topics circulating in the Islamic miliue during his time. My particular focus centers on how al-Farabi brings together Greek philosophy and Islamic ideas into a systematic whole in order to explain the integration of theology, religion, and politics. After graduating from the University of Winnipeg, I enrolled in graduate school at the University of Notre Dame where I studied early Christian thought, political theory, and international relations. Since earning my PhD, I have taught at Colgate University, Skidmore College, and held a research position at the James Madison Program at Princeton University.

Honors & Awards

  • “Echoes of the Caliphate in al-Farabi’s Reconceptualization of Plato’s Decline of the
    Regimes,” History of Political Thought, 40:1, 2019
  • “Al-Farabi’s Cave: Aristotle’s Logic and the Ways of Socrates and Thrasymachus,” The European Legacy 20:3, April 2015
  • "Discrimination and Violence in Alfarabi’s Virtuous City: A Response to Alireza Omid Bakhsh,” Utopian Studies 25:2, November 2014.


  • Ph.D., University of Notre Dame
  • M.A., University of Notre Dame
  • B.A., University of Winnipeg


  • 2018: Seven Torch Medal Awards for Inspiring Colgate Senior Students, Colgate University
  • 2017: Three Torch Medal Awards for Inspiring Colgate Senior Students, Colgate University
  • 2016-2017: Research Assistant Grant, Colgate University
  • 2015-2016: Kulla Family Fund
  • 2014-2015: Earhart Fellowship, University of Notre Dame
  • 2013: Loescher Fellowship, University of Notre Dame
  • 2012: Humane Studies Fellowship, Institute for Humane Studies
  • 2011: Humane Studies Fellowship, Institute for Humane Studies
  • 2010: Outstanding Graduate Student Teacher Award for Excellence in Teaching, Kaneb Center for Teaching and Learning, University of Notre Dame 2010