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Mairéad McAuley

Mairead McAuley

Lecturer in Classics

Office hours:  [ON LEAVE 2014-16]


Research interests:  Early imperial Roman literature, esp. Neronian and Flavian, tragedy and epic; gender and genre in Latin poetry; modern receptions of Senecan tragedy; feminism and critical theory.

IRIS research profile

I completed my BA in Classics in Trinity College Dublin, and, after a few years working in educational software, I returned to academia for an MPhil (2004) and PhD (2008) at Cambridge under John Henderson. Before joining UCL I have held postdoctoral research fellowships in South Africa (at the UKZN and the University of Johannesburg) and was a Junior Research Fellow at King’s College Cambridge (2009-2012).

My research focuses on imperial Latin literature, mainly epic and tragedy, but I have a broader interest in gender, literary theory and the Classical tradition. I am currently finishing a monograph for the Oxford series ‘Classical Literature and Gender theory’ on the representation of motherhood in Virgil, Ovid, Seneca and Statius. My new projects develop this interest in post-Virgilian texts and themes, while branching out, for example, into Roman religion, theories of tragedy and reception studies – these include articles, at various stages of completion, on Seneca and psychoanalysis, British dramatist Sara Kane’s rewriting of Seneca’s Phaedra, and Juno in Ovid and Seneca.


  • Reproducing Rome: Motherhood in Virgil, Ovid, Seneca and Statius (Oxford 2014)


  • ‘Matermorphoses: Motherhood and the Ovidian Epic Subject,’ EuGeSta: Journal on Gender Studies in Antiquity, no. 2 (2012) >>
  • 'Specters of Medea: The Rhetoric of Motherhood and Stepmotherhood in Seneca's Phaedra', Helios 39.1 (2012), 37-72
  • ‘Epic Masculinity in Transition: Gender and Genre in Statius’ Achilleid.’ Akroterion 55 (2010): 37-60 read >
  • ‘Self and Mother: Critical Approaches to Maternity in Roman Literature’ (review essay) Scholia 20 (2011) read >