Elliott Niblock

PhD Candidate, Religious Studies

Elliott is a PhD candidate in Religious Studies, studying philosophy of religion and early twentieth century German-Jewish intellectual history. His dissertation, “Saying You to the Wreckage of History,” brings Martin Buber’s famous dialogical paradigm of I-Thou to bear on Walter Benjamin’s philosophy of history, attempting to carve out a relational concept of history that underscores not only our own agency in relating to histories of oppression, but also how that relation entails a risk: the possibility that we ourselves may be changed. Prior to arriving in Charlottesville, Elliott studied at Macalester College, Harvard Divinity School, and the University of Montana, and also spent several years working as a freelance writer. In his spare time, he enjoys cycling, hiking, both reading and writing poetry, and watching both football and football (soccer).


  • University of Montana: MFA in Creative Writing, Poetry (2014)
  • Harvard Divinity School: MTS in Philosophy of Religion (2012)
  • Macalester College: BA in History and Religious Studies (2009)

Research Interests

  • Philosophy of History
  • History of Religion
  • Modern Jewish Thought
  • Poetry and Religion


  • Teaching Assistant, University of Montana, 2012 - 2014
    • Fall 2012: Writing 101: Introduction to Composition
    • Spring 2013: Writing 101: Introduction to Composition
    • Fall 2013: Creative Writing 211: Poetry Composition
    • Spring 2014: Writing 101: Introduction to Composition


  • “Prayer to the Reader” and “December: Solstice” in The American Literary Review, Spring 2017. Available Online.
  • “At Sylvan Beach 23 Miles From My Grandmother, Dying in a Hospital Bed” “Sarah Palin Endorsing Donald Trump” and “Vitals” in Prick of the Spindle, Issue 11, December 2016.