Photo of Kyla Bruff

Kyla Bruff

German Idealism; Critical theory; 20th c. French Philosophy; Social and Political Philosophy; Existentialism; Romanticism

Degrees:B.A. (Memorial University), M.A. (University of Bonn), PGCE (Kingston University London), Ph.D. (Memorial University and Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg)
Office:3A56 Paterson Hall

Assistant Professor

Office Hours

Mondays, 3:30pm – 5:30pm in 3A356 Paterson Hall; or online by appointment

Courses for 2023-24

  • PHIL 2330 – Happiness and the Good Life
  • PHIL 3005 – 19th Century Philosophy
  • PHIL 4100/PHIL 5000 – The Concept of Nature in Critical Theory
  • PHIL 5701 – Fall Colloquium
  • PHIL 5751 – Winter Colloquium


My research interests lie in 19th and 20th century German and French social and political philosophy. In general, I investigate the metaphysical commitments and historical roots of contemporary ideological orientations. I am currently researching concepts of nature in the critical theory tradition, as primarily informed by Hegel and Marx. I am asking whether these different, often ambiguous, concepts can help us to understand the significance of nature in the context of the current ecological crisis. An additional one of my ongoing projects develops a critical analysis of populism out of the work of Theodor W. Adorno. I wrote my doctoral dissertation on F.W.J. Schelling’s political philosophy—the first standalone monograph on the topic in English.

In addition to my research, I am committed to innovative, practical approaches to carrying out philosophy in public. My work in applied and social philosophy is particularly exemplified through my activities as Co-Director of the ecological NPO For A New Earth (FANE)In this role, I have mobilized philosophy in the public sphere and contributed to policy debates in Newfoundland and Labrador and Sarapiquí, Costa Rica. I am particularly passionate about local, grass-roots action addressing climate change and related ecological issues. FANE has accordingly hosted numerous public events on the ecological effects of specific industries and both government and private megaprojects. My op-ed articles and radio interviews have also addressed themes in feminism and other current political and ecological matters.

I am an active translator from French and German into English. My published translations include the first appearance of Schelling’s Late Political Philosophy: Lectures 22-24 of the Presentation of the Purely Rational Philosophy in English.

My other roles in bringing Schelling’s work to contemporary audiences include serving as the Managing Editor of Kabiri: The Official Journal of the North American Schelling Society, the Treasurer of the North American Schelling Society, and Co-editor of the Palgrave Schelling Handbook.

Research Interests

  • German Idealism: Kant, Schelling, Hegel
  • Critical theory, especially the Frankfurt School
  • 20th century French Philosophy
  • Social and political philosophy
  • Existentialism
  • German Romanticism

Selected Publications

“Enlightenment and Revolution,” The Palgrave Handbook of German Idealism and Poststructuralism, Daniel Whistler and Tilottama Rajan, eds., London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2023.

“Introduction,” The Palgrave Schelling Handbook, co-edited with Sean J. McGrath and Joseph Carew, London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2023 (forthcoming).

“Schelling and the Frankfurt School,” The Palgrave Schelling Handbook, Sean J. McGrath, Kyla Bruff, and Joseph Carew, eds., London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2023 (forthcoming)

Thomas Buchheim, “Schelling’s Late Philosophy,” (translation) co-translated with Majk Feldmeier, The Palgrave Schelling Handbook, Sean J. McGrath, Kyla Bruff, and Joseph Carew, eds., London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2023, eds., London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2023 (translation from German; forthcoming)

“The State as Second Nature in Schelling’s System of Transcendental Idealism,” Life,Organism and Human Nature: Perspectives on Classical German Philosophy, Luca Corti andJohannes-Georg Schülein, eds., Berlin: Springer Nature, 2023 (in press)

Translation: F.W.J. Schelling, “Presentation of the Purely Rational Philosophy (c. 1847)”(translated and edited excerpt), The Schelling Reader, Benjamin Berger and Daniel Whistler,eds., London: Bloomsbury, 2020 (translation from German)

“Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling,” Deleuze’s Philosophical Lineage II, Graham Jones and John Roffe, eds., Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2019.

“The Implications of Schelling’s Metaphysics of Contingency for Phenomenology,” Kabiri: The Official Journal of the North American Schelling Society 1, 2018.

“The Aesthetic in Moral Education: Schiller, Kant, Plato and Read,” Moral Upbringing Through Arts and Literature, Pawel Kazmierczak and Jolanta Rzegocka, eds. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2018.

“Le corps, la perception et l’ontologie: Merleau-Ponty, médiateur entre le dernier Heidegger et le premier Foucault,” La vie dans l’homme ou l’homme dans la vie?, Thomas Ebke and Caterina Zanfi, eds., Postadam: Universitätsverlag Potsdam, 2017.

“Merleau-Ponty, Foucault, Deleuze: Thinking the Lived, Utopic Body (without Organs),” Innen – Außen – Anders: Körper bei Gilles Deleuze und Michel Foucault, Ann-Cathrin Drews, Katharina D. Martin, eds., Transcript: Edition Moderne Postmoderne, 2017.