I hold a joint appointment in the Department of Philosophy and the College of Letters at Wesleyan University. I also currently serve as Faculty Director of the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship program.
My research focuses broadly on Ancient Greek and Roman Philosophy and more narrowly on Plato. I’ve published a book on Plato’s views on the relationship between philosophy and rhetoric in the Gorgias and Phaedrus that explores how our attitudes towards argument are shaped by our attitudes towards others.
My recent work includes a paper on Socrates’ use of rhetoric in the Gorgias, focusing particularly on his attitude toward speechmaking in the dialogue; and a paper on the Republic that examines Plato’s standing as the first theorist of culture in the western tradition. I’m currently working on a cluster of issues surrounding Plato’s understanding of the metaphysics of change or kinēsis in relation to his views on dialectic.
In addition to my scholarship on Plato, I have interests in issues of philosophical method, philosophy as a way of life, the history and practice of rhetoric, ancient literature, and moral psychology (both ancient and contemporary). Most of the courses I teach are on topics that are central to the study of ancient philosophy and the ancient world, though in the past I’ve also taught courses on contemporary virtue ethics and the history of civil disobedience.
This fall I’m co-teaching (with Eirene Visvardi) the College of Letters Antiquity Colloquium and also co-teaching (with Steve Angle and Steve Horst) an introductory philosophy course, “Living a Good Life.”