Walker’s research has largely been organized around six major areas of investigation, which continue to inform his teaching and writing on thought, literature, and criticism in Japan, Europe, and North America:
- The development of Marxist theory after the critique of essentialism – psychoanalysis, capital and its ‘outside’, the politics and theory of the subject.
- Investigations of the national question today on a world scale: nationalism, language, globalization and the postcolonial.
- The status of ‘theory’ within the humanities today; the critical analysis of ‘area studies’ within the contemporary university; the constitution of the ‘human sciences’ in the history of knowledge-production.
- Literary criticism as a mode of social-political analysis and historiographical intervention, the intersection of philosophy and philology.
- The contemporary analysis of the political conjuncture after neoliberalism: populism, late fascism, and the cultural politics of the new right.
- Philosophy, criticism, and literature’s relation to a politics of emancipation in the wake of 1968.