Robert Sinnerbrink

Associate Professor

1992 …2018
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Personal profile


Robert Sinnerbrink is Associate Professor of Philosophy and an ARC Future Fellowship recipient. As an undergraduate he studied medicine, creative writing, film, and philosophy. He received First Class Honours and the University Medal in Philosophy before being awarded his PhD on Hegel, Heidegger, and the Metaphysics of Modernity at the University of Sydney in 2002 ( As a postgraduate he spent six months studying at the Humboldt Universität in Berlin. After returning to Australia, he taught philosophy at a number of institutions including the University of Sydney, UTS, UNSW, The College of Fine Arts, and Macquarie University, before joining the Macquarie Department of Philosophy in July 2002.

Robert's research areas of interest include aesthetics, philosophy of film, phenomenology, critical theory, Heidegger, and social philosophy. His is completing an ARC Future Fellowship project (FT130100334), entitled 'Cinematic Ethics: Exploring Ethical Experience through Film' (2014-2017), which included a research collaboration with the University of Glasgow.

Robert is a former Chair of the Australasian Society for Continental Philosophy (ASCP) and former member of the ASCP's executive committee. He has been a member of the Sydney Society for Literature and Aesthetics, the International Association for Philosophy and Literature, and a former co-convenor of the Sydney Seminar for the Arts and Philosophy. He is currently on the editorial boards of the journals Film-Philosophy, Projections: The Journal of Movies and Mind, and Transformations, the editorial advisory board of Parrhesia: A Journal of Critical Philosophy, Film and Philosophy, and the general editorial board of the journal Derrida Today (Edinburgh University Press).

His current research explores the intersection between philosophy and cinema with a focus on the idea of cinematic ethics: the philosophical potential of cinema as a medium of ethical experience.

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Projects 2009 2017

Research Output 1992 2018

Love Sick: Malick's Kierkegaardian 'Weightless' Trilogy

Sinnerbrink, R. 14 Aug 2018 (Accepted/In press) In : Paragraph.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Philosophy Encounters Film: From Film-Philosophy to Cinematic Thinking

Sinnerbrink, R. 2018 (Accepted/In press) Film Theory Handbook. London: Anthem Press

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Politics, theory, and film: critical encounters with Lars von Trier

Sinnerbrink, R. Feb 2018 In : Contemporary Political Theory. 17, Suppl. 1, p. S1-S5 5 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article/Exhibition review


The Missing Link: Meunier on Imagination and Emotional Engagement

Sinnerbrink, R. 6 Feb 2018 (Accepted/In press) The Structures of the Film Experience: On Filmic Identification (Jean-Pierre Meunier). Hanich, J. & Fairfax, D. (eds.). Amsterdam University Press

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Mental Simulation
Cultural Analysis

"Two Ways through Life": postsecular visions in Melancholia and The Tree of Life

Sinnerbrink, R. Jun 2018 (Accepted/In press) Immanent Frames: Postsecular Cinema between Malick and von Trier. Caruana, J. & Cauchi, M. (eds.). Albany: State University of New York Press, p. 29-45 17 p. (Horizons of Cinema)

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Tree of Life

Activities 2011 2011

  • 1 Editorial work

Film-philosophy (Journal)

Sinnerbrink, R. (Reviewer)
2011 → …

Activity: Editorial work

Press / Media

Cinempathy: Doing Ethics on Screen

Robert Sinnerbrink


1 item of media coverage

Press/Media: Other