Chair, Latin language and literature
Before coming to Yale he taught at Kent State University, Ohio State University and the University of Illinois. At Ohio State he was Associate Dean of the Humanities and at Illinois he was Chair of the Department of Classics. His research has long focused on the social life of Roman letters, especially on the unique cultural encodings that structure and inform Roman ideas of poetry, and the practical implementation of those ideas in specific poetic forms, especially satire.
His main publications include: The Walking Muse: Horace on the Theory of Satire (Princeton, 1993), Satires of Rome: Threatening Poses from Lucilius to Juvenal (Cambridge, 2001), the Cambridge Companion to Roman Satire (Cambridge, 2005), and Oxford Readings in Classical Studies: Horace’s Satires and Epistles (Oxford University Press, 2009). Currently he is writing a commentary on the second book of Horace's Sermones for the Cambridge Green and Yellows.
CLCV 002/HUMS 09
The Romans: A Cultural Introduction
Fall 2012, MW 1-2:15 Areas: HU (Freshman Seminar, Permission Required)
This course fulfills the area requirement in the humanities and arts (HU).
On the underside of Rome. An introduction to ancient Roman culture, with special focus on the lives that were lived by common citizens, non-elites, foreigners, freedmen and slaves. The city of Rome is best remembered for its grandeur, its dizzying architecture, games, armies and baths, and for the lofty pageantry of the emperors’ power.
But it is also remembered as a place of unthinkable cruelty and injustice, where men were made to kill each other for entertainment, where slaves screamed themselves to death on crosses, and where enemies of the state were lit as lamps to provide light for the emperor’s feast. This course will show how these contradictions were produced and maintained in ancient Rome, and how they were thought to make sense.
Spring 2013, M W 1-2:15
The primary project of the course is to read Petronius’s Satyricon, attending to the basic demands of close reading as well as to larger matters of genre, style, and cultural context.
The course requirements will include selected further readings from relevant Latin texts (e.g. Pompeiian graffiti, Tacitus’s Annales, Seneca’s Epistulae Morales) as well as works of modern scholarship on issues of narrative, intertextuality, Neronian culture, religion and literature.