Classics and Ancient History research
With broad engagement through public engagement or broadcasts, Classics' specialist research informs work in museums and professional archaeology.
My research interests range widely across Greek history of the archaic and classical periods. I am, in essence, a political historian, although I am interested in the impact of social relations on Greek politics.
I also have interests in Greek identity and relationships with the non-Greek world, especially as expressed through literature and the visual arts. I am also interested in the development of Greek constitutions and Greek constitutional forms, and the early attempts to find a theoretical framework in which they could be understood.
My research deals with the late Iron Age to Roman transition in north-west Europe, and the application of quantitative methods to studying artefacts and material culture. I have particular interests in the consumption of both food and 'things' in general, and how circulating material culture can inform our understanding of globalising processes.
Ideas of mass migration are crucial to the understanding of our globally-linked 21st century world. But the phenomenon is far from being uniquely modern. The ancient world too was born from patterns of extensive movements of people, some of them en masse. A number of my articles and a major monograph on the subject challenge prevailing conceptions of a natural tie to the land and a demographically settled world.
My research interests include Latin literature and Roman culture: Morality, exempla and heroic tales, especially the work of Valerius Maximus; gender and sexuality in the ancient world; and the reception of Classics from the Renaissance to the present day, particularly as it relates to the history of sexuality and the erotic.
My research focuses on the art and archaeology of the Greek and Roman world, and is characterised by an interdisciplinary and contextual approach. Key interests include: The ideologies and value systems of the Romans as they are expressed through images (especially portraiture and funerary art), architecture, and epigraphy; The language and 'rhetoric' of Greek and Roman images and the relationship between image and text; Inter-cultural relationships, in particular the multi-cultural society of Roman Egypt; Geo-archaeology, in particular marble provenance analyses, which contribute to our understanding of ancient economies.
My particular research interests lie in Greek and Roman drama, ancient literary criticism, fragmentary and lost works, and the idea of 'quotation culture' in the ancient world (that is, the ways in which literature was quoted, deployed or manipulated in a variety of different contexts).