Isabell Lorey studied political science, philosophy and African and European ethnology at Goethe University Frankfurt and her thesis in 1996 was the first monograph on the US American political philosopher Judith Butler, one of the most significant theorists in queer studies. The pertinent book that evolved from her thesis, Immer Ärger mit dem Subjekt, which was long out of print, has just been republished, with a new foreword, by transversal texts, at the same time as the publication in Argentina of a Spanish translation by La Cebra. In 2009 Isabell Lorey habilitated at the University of Vienna with a study on society formation and the consolidation of rule, which was published by Diaphanes in 2011 as Figuren des Immunen. Lorey is probably most well known for her book Die Regierung der Prekären, which has since been translated into five languages, and for which Judith Butler wrote the foreword. In it Lorey deals with the insecurity that is spreading through society, social uncertainty in the neo-liberal context, the associated gender politics but also the possibilities for change.
Lorey has served long stints as assistant and visiting professor at Berlin University of the Arts and Humboldt University of Berlin, as well as teaching at the universities of Basel, Vienna and Kassel. She also has extensive experience as a television journalist, particularly on the editorial staff of the children’s news show “logo”, as well as her excellent network and prominence in the international art world, which is reflected not least in her widely read contribution to new emancipatory forms of democracy in the documenta 14 catalogue.
Lorey returned to Cologne, where she worked back in 1996 as an editor of the journal Texte zur Kunst, as professor of queer studies in the arts and sciences.