Assistant Professor of Classics
Modern Languages and Classics
I was a late-comer to Classics, as are many students today. What first attracted me to the field were the languages (ancient Greek and Latin)—mind-blowingly good, and so different from anything I’d ever imagined. I had no idea language could work this way! I couldn’t get enough and studied languages with a passion, routinely working into the small hours of the morning (besides Greek and Latin, there was German, French, Italian). Before my life in academia, I was obsessed with music (still love it, all kinds!), played in bars, and would practice constantly. It was this same kind of passion and love that I brought to research and teaching.
As I came to realize, a real advantage that Classics has over other fields is how vast it is. It is not one discipline, but many disciplines rolled together (languages and linguistics, history, anthropology, rhetoric, philosophy, political science, etc.). Pick what you like. Go with your strengths. It is a wonderful combination of rigorous thinking and imagination. Another real advantage of Classics is the fact it is a ‘roots’ discipline. History is not just about the past: it explains the present. A lot of people are like tourists in their own environment—not really understanding why things are the way they are, not even fully grasping the language they speak. If you want to know how things work, why they work the way they do, then Classics is an excellent discipline. And it can be quite a radical discipline—good for re-thinking assumptions and challenging the status quo.
I earned a Ph.D. in Classical Studies from Duke University. I have taught at a wide variety of schools (e.g. Ohio State, Duke U., Cornell U., Dickinson College). Currently, I teach a broad range of Classics and Honors courses at Ball State. During the summers I sometimes teach in Italy, at the University of Bologna, the oldest university in Europe. I try to communicate to students my passion for the subjects that I teach and study. One of my favorite parts of teaching is connecting with students. I love to see from students a genuine interest and enthusiasm for the material and ideas, beyond the requirements of a class.
I have published a couple of books, many articles in academic journals, and have received international awards for my work. My scholarly research tends to concentrate on two areas: (1) the Roman educational system, rhetoric, and speech performances called ‘declamation’; (2) the survival and transmission of ancient texts, from book rolls to medieval manuscripts to printed books to the digital age.
Besides Classics and teaching, I love music, and sports and exercise—especially, basketball, running, and weight lifting.
Figures in the Shadows: The Speech of Two Augustan-Age Declaimers, Arellius Fuscus and Papirius Fabianus, Beiträge zur Altertumskunde, Walter de Gruyter, 2018.
Law and Ethics in Greek and Roman Declamation. Co-editor with E. Amato and F. Citti. Walter de Gruyter, 2015.
Articles (8) in J. Stover, ed. Oxford Guide to the Transmission of the Latin Classics
1. [Cicero], Rhetorica ad Herennium
2. Cicero, Tusculan Disputations
3. Curtius Rufus, Histories
4. Lucan, Bellum Ciuile
5. Scholia on Lucan, Bellum Ciuile
6. Ovid, Carmina amatoria
7. Seneca the elder
8. Valerius Maximus
“The text of Q. Curtius Rufus’ Histories in the ninth century: the rolling tradition,” Segno e testo 19 (2021) 117–166, 5 plates.
“The earliest fragments of a Latin declamatory corpus: the Quintilianic Minor Declamations and the Excerpta of the elder Seneca,” in H. Anderson and D. Gura, edd., Between the Text and the Page: Studies on the Transmission of Medieval Ideas in Honour of Frank T. Coulson, Brepols (2020) 40–65.
“The Ocean (Seneca, Suas. 1): community rules for a common literary topic,” in M. Dinter, M. Martinho, and Ch. Guérin, edd., Seneca the Elder: Reading Roman Declamation, Oxford Univ. Press (2020) 151–185.
“Annotations to a corpus of Latin declamations: history, function, and the technique of rhetorical summary,” Lexis 34 (2016) 357–382.
“Shared speech in the collection of the elder Seneca (Contr. 10.4): towards a study of common literary passages as community interaction,” in E. Amato, F. Citti, and B. Huelsenbeck, edd., Law and Ethics in Greek and Roman Declamation, Walter de Gruyter (2015) 35–62.
“A nexus of manuscripts copied at Corbie, ca. 850–880: a typology of script-style and copying procedure,” Segno e testo 11 (2013) 287–309.
“The rhetorical collection of the elder Seneca: textual tradition and traditional text,” Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 106 (2011) 229–299.
“Seneca Contr. 2.2.8 and 2.2.1: the rhetor Arellius Fuscus and Latin literary history,” Materiali e Discussioni 66 (2011) 175–194.
“A twelfth-century manuscript of Lucan’s Bellum ciuile (Dukianus latinus 118),” Manuscripta 51.1 (2007) 21–59.