A. G. Leventis Research Fellow in Ancient Greek Literature
Office hours: Term 3: by appointment only
Research interests: Greek literature, especially tragedy and the ancient novel; reception of Greek drama in postcolonial contexts; the Classical tradition in Latin America
Before joining UCL, I studied Classics on both sides of the Atlantic: I hold BA degrees from Wellesley and King’s College Cambridge, and an MA and PhD from Princeton. I also supervised various topics in Classics and English at several colleges in Cambridge. At UCL I teach a range of courses on classical language, literature, culture, and reception. Additionally, I serve as the academic adviser for the UCL annual classical play at the Bloomsbury Theatre.
At present I am completing two book projects on the ancient Greek tragic chorus. The first is a monograph, Playing the Chorus: Greek Tragedy Beyond the Choral Ode, which offers a new interpretation of the tragic chorus by examining its many roles and capabilities. In Playing the Chorus I present a two-part account of the chorus’ dynamism: the first explores the interactive dimension of the chorus, which participates in the action and communicates with actors in sung exchanges. The second focuses upon its physical adaptability, in particular the manner in which tragedians alter their physical configuration (e.g. splitting or augmenting the chorus in various tragedies, in order to create semi-choruses or secondary choruses). With Thomas Coward (KCL) and Theodora Hadjimichael (LMU Munich) I am also editing Paths of Song: The Lyric Dimension of Greek Tragedy, which locates ancient tragic drama within a larger map of Greek lyric activity, stressing that tragedy was a vital participant at the centre of a wider Greek song-culture. The volume expands on findings from the Paths of Song conference held at UCL in 2013. Additionally, I have forthcoming articles on other aspects of Greek tragedy.
While at UCL I have also been developing a second major research strand on Hellenic Classicisms in Latin America. With Andrew Laird (Warwick) and Nicola Miller (UCL), I have organised a public symposium to be held this May, What is 'Latin' about Latin America, which will examine the ways in which, throughout the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, newly independent ‘Latin American’ countries, the world’s first modern Republics, found non-colonial analogues and precedents in re-imaginings of European classical antiquity. With Konstantinos P. Nikoloutsos (Saint Joseph's University, USA) I am editing a volume on the rich and varied reception of ancient Greek and Roman drama in the region, building on the Greeks and Romans on the Latin American Stage conference which I organised at UCL in June 2014. I have also started investigating the surprising ways in which ancient Greek drama assumed a new afterlife in the distinctive cultural and political climate of the twentieth century Hispanic Caribbean.
In addition to the A. G. Leventis Foundation, my research has been supported by the British Academy, the Harvard Center for Hellenic Studies, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation.
Articles and Chapters
- 'Uncles ex machina: Familial Epiphany in Euripides' Electra', forthcoming in Ramus (2016).
- ‘Sophocles’ Antigone’, forthcoming in Portraits of Antigone in Portugal and Brazil, eds. C. Morais, L. Hardwick, and M. de Fátima Silva (Brill) (co-authored with K. P. Nikoloutsos).
- 'Revolutionizing Greek Tragedy in Cuba: Virgilio Piñera’s Electra Garrigó', in K. Bosher, F. Macintosh, J. McConnell, and P. Rankine (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Greek Drama in the Americas (OUP 2015), pp. 361-379
- 'Charicleia the Martyr: Heliodorus and Early Christian Narrative', in M. P. Futre Pinheiro, J. Perkins, R. Pervo (eds.), The Ancient Novel and the Early Christian and Jewish Narrative: Fictional Intersections (Ancient Narrative Supplementum 16: Barkhuis 2013), pp. 139-152
- 'Lucian', in R. Bagnall, K. Brodersen, C. Champion, A. Erskine, and S. Huebner (eds.), The Encyclopedia of Ancient History (Wiley-Blackwell 2012), pp. 4155-4156
- Review of C. W. Marshall, The Structure and Performance of Euripides' Helen (Cambridge 2014), forthcoming in Classical Journal
- Review of J. Billings, F. Budelmann, and F. Macintosh (eds.), Choruses, Ancient and Modern (Oxford 2013), Classical World 108.3 (Spring 2015): 443-444
- Review of G. Harrison and V. Liapis (eds.), Performance in Greek and Roman Theatre
(Brill 2013), Classical World 108.1 (Fall 2014), pp.137-138
- Review of S. Montiglio, Love and Providence: Recognition in the Ancient Novel (Oxford 2013), Classical Review 64.1 (April 2014), pp. 87-89
- Review of K. Ormand (ed.), A Companion to Sophocles (Wiley-Blackwell 2012), Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2013.01.24
- Review of L. A. Swift, The Hidden Chorus: Echoes of Genre in Tragic Lyric (Oxford 2010), Classical World 106.2 (Winter 2013), pp. 292-293
General Essays on Greek Drama
- 'The Oresteia and the Ambiguities of Revenge'
- 'Bacchae: A Divine Tragedy'
- 'Hippolytus Redux'
- 'Euripides' Trojan Women: A Tragedy of Survivors'
- 'Aristophanes' Socrates in Context'
- Menander: A New Comedy for Athens
I enjoy communicating both my research and passion for the ancient Greek world and its modern relevance with diverse audiences in a variety of media. Below is a selection of recent appearances:
- On Ancient and Modern Debt Crises (min 12-19), BBC Radio 4 Broadcasting House, 05/07/2015
- 'Greeks and Romans on the Latin American Stage', Classics Confidential
- 'A Puerto Rican Lysistrata', Classics Confidential
- ‘Greek Tragedy in the Modern World,’ part of a public panel discussion (with Fiona Macintosh, Pantelis Michelakis, Miriam Leonard) organised by the Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Studies