Christopher Wolfe

Christopher Wolfe

Professor Emeritus of Political Science. Ph.D., Boston College, 1978.
(414) 217-7746


Christopher Wolfe is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Marquette University. He currently is Co-Director of the Thomas International Center in Raleigh-Durham NC. He graduated summa cum laude from Notre Dame in 1971 with a major in government and went on to study political philosophy at Boston College, receiving his Ph.D. in 1978. During his graduate studies he "migrated" from political philosophy to American Political Thought and Constitutional Law. He taught at Assumption College from 1975 to 1978 and moved to Marquette in 1978, being promoted to associate professor in 1985, and full professor in 1992, and retiring in 2008. He served as department chair from 1997-2000.

Dr. Wolfe's main area of research and teaching for two decades was Constitutional Law, and his books include The Rise of Modern Judicial Review: From Constitutional Interpretation to Judge-Made Law (Basic Books, 1986), Judicial Activism: Bulwark of Freedom or Precarious Security? (Brooks/Cole, 1991) and How to Read the Constitution: Originalism, Constitutional Interpretation, and Judicial Power (Rowman and Littlefield, 1996). He also edited That Eminent Tribunal: Judicial Supremacy and the Constitution (Princeton University Press, 2004).

In his later research and writing, Dr. Wolfe shifted back to political theory, with studies of natural law and liberalism. His book Natural Law Liberalism was published by Cambridge University Press in 2006. He is also the editor (with John Hittinger) of Liberalism at the Crossroads (Rowman and Littlefield, 1994; revised edition, 2003), which collects essays on various contemporary liberal political theorists and their critics.

Dr. Wolfe has published articles in many professional journals, as well as book reviews and various opinion pieces. He has lectured at more than 40 American universities, and in Italy, Spain, France, Poland, Austria, Romania, and Hungary. He was the recipient of a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship in 1994 and in 1997 was named to the Templeton Honor Rolls for Education in a Free Society. He is a member of the American Political Science Association, the Federalist Society, and the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars.


Since 1989, Dr. Wolfe has been President of the American Public Philosophy Institute, a group of scholars from various disciplines that brings natural law theory to bear on contemporary scholarly and public issues. The APPI has organized numerous conferences and panels at professional meetings, which have resulted in edited books: The Family, Civil Society and the State (Rowman and Littlefield, 1998), Homosexuality and American Public Life (Spence Publishing Co., 1999), Natural Law and Public Reason (Georgetown University Press, 2000), and Same-Sex Matters: The Challenge of Homosexuality (Spence Publishing Co., 2000).

After being named Emeritus Professor at Marquette in 2008, Dr. Wolfe became full-time Co-Director of the Thomas International Center located in Raleigh-Durham NC. The Center encourages the search for purpose and meaning in human life, found especially in intellectual and moral virtue, the harmony of truth and freedom, of reason and faith. It is inspired by classical and Christian thinkers from Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas to C.S. Lewis and John Paul II. The Center pursues these goals especially by working with students at various universities, by promoting scholarship in the classical and Christian intellectual tradition represented by Thomas Aquinas, and by offering programs, open to all, to discuss important issues facing our society today.

In 2014, Dr. Wolfe joined the faculty of the University of Dallas, as a Professor of Politics.


Dr. Wolfe is married to Anne McGowan Wolfe, and they have been blessed with ten children.




Return to Faculty home.

Department of Political Science

Marquette University
Wehr Physics Building, Room 468
PO Box 1881
Milwaukee, WI 53201-1881
(414) 288-6842 (phone)
Visit the contact page for more information