Dr Robert Cowan
Lecturer in Classics
Postgraduate Research Coordinator
Department of Classics and Ancient History
School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry (SOPHI)
Quadrangle Building A14
The University of Sydney
NSW 2006 Australia
Office: Room J6.04 Quadrangle A14
Phone: (02) 93517210
Fax: (02) 9351 3918
Fields of interest
- Latin epic, esp. Silius Italicus and Statius
- Roman satire
- Roman tragedy
- Latin didactic poetry
- Horace and Ovid
- Greek Drama
- Greek and Latin literature more broadly
BA (Hons), MSt, DPhil (Oxford)
- ‘Haven't I seen you before somewhere? Optical allusions in Republican tragedy’ in V. Lapis & G. Harrison (edd.) Performance in Greek and Roman Theatre. (Brill) forthcoming, February 2013.
- ‘Fear and Loathing in Lucretius: Latent Tragedy and Anti-Allusion in DRN 3’, in Theodore D. Papanghelis, Stephen J. Harrison & Stavros Frangoulidis, (edd.) Generic Interfaces: Encounters, Interactions and Transformations in Latin Literature. Trends in Classics Supplementary Volume 20 (De Gruyter: Berlin & New York, 2013) 115-35 forthcoming March 2013.
- ‘Back out of Hell: the virtual katabasis and initiation of Silius’ Minucius’, in Antony Augoustakis (ed.) Ritual and Religion in Flavian Epic (OUP: Oxford, 2013) 217-32, forthcoming, April 2013.
- ‘Of gods, men and stout fellows: Cicero on Sallustius’ Empedoclea (Q.fr. 2.10(9).3)’, Classical Quarterly 63 (2013) forthcoming November 2013.
- ‘Alas, poor Io! Bilingual wordplay in Horace Epode 11’, Mnemosyne 65 (2012) 753-763.
- Entries on ‘Lucan’, ‘Statius’, ‘Valerius Flaccus’, and ‘Silius Italicus’ in Blackwell Encyclopedia of Ancient History (Wiley-Blackwell: Oxford, 2012).
- ‘Metre and Meaning in CIL I2 3109a’, Acta Classica 55 (2012) 155-63.
- ‘Valerius Cato, Callimachus and the Very Large Girl (Ticida fr. 103 FRP)’, in C. Deroux (ed.) Studies in Latin Literature and Roman History XVI (Editions Latomus: Bruxelles, 2012) 94-100.
- ‘Lucan’s thunder-box: scatology, epic and satire in Suetonius’ Vita Lucani’, Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 106 (2011 [published 2012]) 301-13.
- ‘Sinon and the case of the hypermetric oracle’, Phoenix 65.3/4 (2011 [published 2012]) 361-70.
- ‘Passing over Cephisos’ grandson: literal praeteritio and the rhetoric of obscurity in Ovid Met. 7.350-93’, Ramus 40.2 (2011 [published 2012]) 146-67.
- ‘Hopefully surviving: the limits of devotio in Virgil and others’ Proceedings of the Virgil Society 27 (2011) 56-98.
- Horace Satires and Epistles, trans. John Davie, introduction and notes by Robert Cowan (OUP World’s Classics: Oxford, 2011).
- ‘Sing Evohe! Three twentieth-century operatic versions of Euripides’ Bacchae’ in Peter Brown & Suzana Ograjen’ek (edd.) Ancient Drama in Music for the Modern Stage (OUP: Oxford, 2010) 320-39.
- ‘A stranger in a strange land. Medea in Roman Republican tragedy’ in Heike Bartel & Anne Simon (edd.) Unbinding Medea. Interdisciplinary Approaches to a Classical Myth (Legenda: Oxford, 2010) 39-52.
- ‘Virtual Epic: counterfactuals, sideshadowing and the poetics of contingency in the Punica’ in Antony Augoustakis (ed.) Brill’s Companion to Silius Italicus (Brill: Leiden, 2010) 323-51.
- ‘Scanning Iulus: prosody, position and politics in the Aeneid.’ Vergilius 55 (2009) 3-12.
- ‘Thrasymennus’ wanton wedding: etymology, genre, and uirtus in Silius Italicus, Punica’, Classical Quarterly 59.1 (2009) 226-37.
- ‘Virgil’s cucumber again: Columella 10.378-92’ Classical Quarterly 59.1 (2009) 286-9.
- ‘Starring Nero as Nero: poetry, role-playing and identity in Juvenal 8. 215-21’, Mnemosyne 62 (2009) 76-89.
- ‘Nothing to do with Phaedra’ Aristophanes, Thesmophoriazusae 497-501’, Classical Quarterly 58.1 (2008) 317-22.
- ‘The headless city: the decline and fall of Capua in Silius Italicus’ Punica’ ORA 1542 (2007).
- ‘Reading Trojan Rome: illegitimate epithets, avatars, and the limits of analogy in Silius Italicus’ Punica’ ORA 1559 (2007).
- ‘The Land of King Mane. A pun at Horace Odes 1.22.15’, Classical Quarterly 56.1 (2006) 322-4.
- ‘Absurdly Scythian Spaniards: Silius, Horace and the Concani’, Mnemosyne 59.2 (2006) 260-7.
- New introduction to re-print of O.A.W. Dilke ed. Statius’ Achilleid (Bristol Phoenix Press: Exeter, 2005).
- Indivisible Cities. Mirrors of Rome in Silius Italicus. (OUP).
- After Virgil: the poetry, politics and perversion of Roman epic. (Bristol Phoenix Press).
- Virgil and the Aeneid. (Bloomsbury Duckworth)
- Review of Philip Thibodeau, Playing the Farmer: Representations of Rural Life in Vergil's Georgics, forthcoming in Mnemosyne
- Review of Marie Louise von Glinski, Simile and Identity in Ovid's Metamorphoses, in BMCR 2012.10.20.
- Review of Ingo Gildenhard, Martin Revermann edd., Beyond the Fifth Century: Interactions with Greek Tragedy from the Fourth Century BCE to the Middle Ages in BMCR 2011.11.49.
- Review of François Spaltenstein, Commentaire des fragments dramatiques de Livius Andronicus, in Classical Review 61.2 (2011).
- Review of Leah Kronenberg, Allegories of farming from Greece and Rome: philosophical satire in Xenophon, Varro and Virgil, for BMCR 2010.10.74.
- Review of G. L. Fain, Writing Epigrams: The Art of Composition in Catullus, Callimachus and Martial, in Journal of Roman Studies 100 (2010) 305-6.
- Review of Francis Cairns, Generic Composition in Greek and Latin Poetry revised edition, in Classical Review 60.1 (2010) 110-12.
- Review of Charles McNelis, Statius’ Thebaid and the Poetics of Civil War, in Classical Review 60.1 (2010) 133-5.
- Review of Gigliola Maggiulli, Per alta nemora. La poesia del mondo vegetale in Seneca tragico. in BMCR 2009.09.51.
- Review of Randall Ganiban, Statius and Virgil, in BMCR 2009.06.31.
- Review of Dorothee Elm von der Osten, Liebe als Wahnsinn. Die Konzeption der Göttin Venus in den Argonautica des Valerius Flaccus, in BMCR 2008.08.32.
- Review of J.D. Reed, Virgil’s Gaze: Nation and Poetry in the Aeneid, in Classical Review 58.1 (2008) 125-6.
- Review of Bruce Gibson (ed.) Statius Silvae 5. Edited with Introduction, Translation, and Commentary. in Classical Review 58.1 (2008) 161-4.
- Review of Alan Cameron, Greek Mythography in the Roman World, in Journal of Hellenic Studies 127 (2007) 172-3.
- Review of Yasmin Syed, Vergil’s Aeneid and the Roman Self: Subject and Nation in Literary Discourse, in Journal of Roman Studies 97 (2007) 314-15.
- Review of Andreas N. Michalopoulos (ed.) Ovid Heroides 16 and 17. Introduction, Text and Commentary, Classical Review 57.2 (2007) 400-2.
- Review of Giampiero Scafoglio, L’Astyanax di Accio: Saggio sul background mitografico, testo critico e commento dei frammenti, in BMCR 2007.04.67.
- Review of K.F.L. Pollman, Statius, Thebaid 12. Introduction, Text, and Commentary, in BMCR 2007.04.54.
- Review of P.J. Heslin, The Transvestite Achilles. Gender and genre in Statius’ Achilleid, in BMCR 2007.04.53.
- Review of Mario Erasmo, Roman Tragedy, Theatre to Theatricality, for BMCR 2005.07.53.
- Review of R. Sklenár The Taste for Nothingness: A Study of Virtus and Related Themes in Lucan’s Bellum Civile in BMCR 2004.09.40.
- Review of W.E. Wycislo, Seneca’s Epistolary Responsum: the De ira as parody in Journal of Roman Studies 93 (2003) 387.
- Review of Roland Mayer, Seneca, Phaedra. (Duckworth Companions to Greek and Roman Tragedy) in BMCR 2003.07.41.
- Review of D. T. McGuire Acts of Silence. civil war, tyranny, and suicide in the Flavian epics in Journal of Roman Studies 90 (2000) 243-4.
GRKA1600 Introduction to Ancient Greek 1 (Unit coordinator)
GRKA2620 Reading Greek 1
GRKA7001 Classical Greek for Postgraduates 1
S1 2011: unit coordinator and lectures
S1 2012: unit coordinator and lectures
LATN2601 Intermediate Latin (unit coordinator)
S2 2010: Seneca Apocolocyntosis and [Seneca] Octavia
S2 2011: Caesar De Bello Gallico 6 and related ethnographic texts
S2 2012/2013: Martial Epigrams and Pliny the Younger Letters (selected)
LATN3600 Advanced Latin (unit coordinator)
S1 2011: Virgil Georgics 3 and selections from Lucretius De Rerum Natura 4
S1 2013: Horace Odes 1
LATN3604 Latin Republican Poetry (unit coordinator)
S1 2012: Horace Epistles 1 and selections from Lucretius De Rerum Natura 3
LATN3605 Latin Republican Prose (unit coordinator)
S2 2011: Cicero In Pisonem and related invective texts
ANHS1600 Foundations for Ancient Greece
S1 2012/2013: lectures on Homer, lyric, tragedy, comedy and Hellenistic poetry
ANHS1601 Foundations for Ancient Rome
S2 2010/2011/2012: lecture on ‘Literature in the 50s BC’
ANHS1602 Greek and Roman Myth
S1 2011: lecture on ‘HEROES: Fall of Troy and the Returns’
S2 2012: various lectures
ANHS2609 Alexander and the Hellenistic World
S1 2013: lectures on Hellenistic literature and philosophy
ANHS2615 Comedy in the Ancient World
S2 2012: unit coordinator, lectures and tutorials
ANHS2616 Tragedy and Society in Greece and Rome
S2 2012: unit designer and coordinator, lectures and tutorials
ANHS2619 The World of Ancient Epic
S2 2011: lectures on Flavian epic
click here for unit descriptions
2011: Scipio Africanus in Livy, Divination in Virgil and Lucan, Rhetoric and Philosophy in Cicero.
2012: The Judgement of Paris in Homer, Expressive metre in Catullus and Lucretius
- July 2011. Silius Italicus and Flavian Culture. International Conference in association with the Pacific Rim Latin Seminar and the Flavian Epic Network, to be held in CCANESA.
- June 2010. Laughter in the Library: a colloquium on Old Comedy for Penny Bulloch. International Symposium held in Ioannou Classics Centre, University of Oxford.
- Oxford University Press
- American Journal of Philology
- ASCS32 Conference Proceedings
- Classical Philology
- Classical Quarterly
- Harvard Studies in Classical Philology
- Transactions of the American Philological Association
- ASCS33 Conference abstract committee
- ASCS34 Conference abstract committee
Departmental and Faculty Service
- Postgraduate Research Coordinator, Department of Classics, University of Sydney, 2010-
- Library Liaison Officer, Department of Classics and Ancient History, 2011-
- Departmental Representative to Australasian Society for Classical Studies (ASCS) 2011-
- SOPHI representative on Faculty Library Committee, 2011-
- SOPHI representative on Faculty PG Research Committee, 2011-
- SOPHI representative on Faculty PhD Travel Grant Scheme Selection Committee, 2011
- SOPHI representative on Faculty PG Teaching Fellowships Scheme Selection Committee, 2011, 2012
- SOPHI representative on Faculty HDR Induction and Orientation event working group 2013
- Numerous posts and committee-memberships in previous posts at Oxford and Bristol including:
- Graduate Studies Committee, Classical Language and Literature Sub-faculty, University of Oxford, 2009–10
- Faculty admissions coordinator, Classics Joints Schools, University of Oxford, (Mod. Langs, English, Oriental Studies) 2007–10
- Joint Committee for Classics and English, University of Oxford, 2009–10
- Joint Committee for Classics and Modern Languages, University of Oxford, 2009–10
- Examiner and Secretary, Classics Honour Moderations, University of Oxford, 2008-10
- Chair: Classics Joint Consultative Committee for Undergraduate Matters, University of Oxford, 2006-9
- Examinations Officer, Department of Classics and Ancient History, University of Bristol 2003-4
- Arts Faculty Progress Committee, University of Bristol 2003-4
- Departmental Undergraduate Teaching & Learning Committee, Department of Classics and Ancient History, University of Bristol 2002-4
- Graduate Studies Committee, Classical Language and Literature Sub-faculty, University of Oxford, 2009–10
- University ‘respondent’ to Sydney Festival production of Thyestes at Carriageworks.
- Sydney Latin Summer School: tutor and lecturer 2011-
- Lectures on the Colosseum for “Investigating History” social inclusion days at University of Sydney 2012
- Lecture on Aeneid 10 for Classical Language Teachers’ Association Year 12 Latin Study Day, 2012.
Omnibus (magazine-journal for Classics school students): Editor 2006-7, member of Editorial Board 2004–10, and regular contributor
- JACT Latin Summer School, Wells: tutor 2004–9 and lecturer 2003–9
- Sutton Trust Summer School, Oxford: tutor and lecturer 2005–8
- Played roles of Anchises and Evander in The Aeneid: the Musical (Oxford, 2007).
- Numerous schools talks delivered in UK
- President of Oxford Philological Society, 2007-8
- Member of Roman Society Council, 2008–10
- Jowett Copyright Trustee, 2006–10 (Acting Secretary 2007).
- I have also served as internal and external examiner of several PhD theses for the Universities of Cambridge, Sydney and Yale.