Charles des Portes

Charles des Portes


I completed a MRes in Politics at the Université Paris 2 Panthéon-Assas where I wrote a dissertation at the intersection between, political philosophy, feminist theory and semiotics. I am currently doing a PhD in Political Philosophy under the supervision of Dr Jonathan Dean and Dr Kerri Woods.

Research interests

My doctoral thesis aims to propose a phenomenological understanding of freedom through feminism. My thesis is committed to a hermeneutic phenomenological approach that I take from Hannah Arendt. Accordingly, I will try to explore the meaning of freedom both within her thought and to extend the understanding of this phenomenon from a feminist perspective. Within a large part of feminist philosophy, I tried to show that freedom and liberation are intertwined and that this assimilation is a direct result of the metaphysical concepts that we have inherited. Therefore, following Arendt’s hermeneutic phenomenology, my aim is to deconstruct (Abbau) the metaphysical residues which constitute our categories of understanding. Thereafter, I will intend to experiment a new understanding of freedom based on what Arendt called the lost treasures of the past, namely, experiences that were obliviated by the tradition of thought. Consequently, I intend to come up with an an-archic conception of freedom understood as a phenomenon which is based on the contestation of an authority in order to make something new appear into the world. Freedom as an an-archic praxis means that it is an action that aims at the transformation of a social reality and at a new beginning (praxis), but this action does not rely on any rule or authority and is characterised by its spontaneous novelty (an-archic). This will lead me to analyse feminist philosophy as a (hermeneutic) practice, the question of the body as well as the one of action.

My research interests are:

  • Phenomenology & hermeneutics (Arendt, Beauvoir, Heidegger, Husserl, Merleau-Ponty, Young)
  • Hannah Arendt
  • Political Philosophy (Freedom, democracy, praxis)
  • Feminist Philosophy (Gender, intersubjectivity)


  • MRes in Political Studies (Université Paris 2 Panthéon-Assas)

Research groups and institutes

  • Political Theory and Cultural Values
  • Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies
  • Centre for Contemporary Political Theory