Cynthia Kraus, Dr.

Dr. Cynthia Kraus, a philosopher, is a Senior Lecturer in Gender Studies and the Social Studies of Science and Medicine at the Faculty of social and political sciences at the University of Lausanne ( She works on the sciences of brain sex and the neuroscience of desire, and how knowledge claims about the brain reconfigure, or not, the ways in which clinicians define, diagnose, and treat psychiatric and somatic disorders, in particular disorders of sex development (DSD), gender dysphoria and sexual disorders. She is also developing a more normative research program that aims to bring the sciences and the clinic into democracy, namely : dissensus studies. See « NeuroGenderings III : the 1st international Dissensus Conference on brain and gender » :

Her research experience includes a fieldwork in a fly genetics laboratory at the University of California at Berkeley (1998-2001), an ethnography on the clinical management of intersex in the context of surgical missions organized in West Africa (2010-2011), and the direction of a project on the history of the teen brain (April 2011 to August 2014) and another on the history of sexology including the neuroscience of desire (March 2015 to October 2016), funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF):

— “Gender as an Engine of Discovery: A History of the Making of Cerebral Adolescence from the 1950’s to the Present” (SNF Grant n° 100016_134670/1 and 100016_134670/2, 40 months. Main applicant C. Kraus; co-applicant: V. Barras. Total amount received: CHF 178’898.-).
—  “Making up Heterosexuality: A History of Female Desire ‘Disorders’ in French-speaking Switzerland from the 1960’s to the Present”  (SNF Grant n° 100011_153080/1, 20 months. Main applicant C. Kraus; co-applicants: V. Barras & V. Mottier. Amount received: CHF 175’218.-).

She was a Visiting Scholar at the Rhetoric Department of UC Berkeley (1997-2000), a Visiting Scientist at the Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine and Wellcome Unit, University of Manchester, U.K. (2011-2012), and a Visiting Professor at the Institut des Humanités de Paris /Université Paris Diderot – Paris 7, France (November 2013). In 2015, she will be a Research Scholar at the Department of Gender and Sexuality Studies at Barnard College, Columbia University (January to June) and a Visiting Scholar at the Child, Youth and Family Program, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, University of Toronto (February to July).

Research interests
Gender, body and sexuality studies
Social studies of science, technology and medicine
Sciences of brain sex and neuroscience of desire
Developmental biology and psychology
Psychiatric classifications and the classification of diseases
Gender identity clinic
Intersex and transgender issues
Feminism, strong democracy and coalition politics