Paolo Asso, Ph.D.



Princeton University

2002 Ph.D. Classics (Literature and Philology)

Dissertation: "Myth and History in Lucan's African Interlude: A Commentary on Bellum Civile 4.581-824; 9.300-510." Supervisors: D.C. Feeney (director), R.E. Fantham, R.A. Kaster

2000 M.A. Classics.

Istituto Universitario Orientale (Naples, Italy)

1991 Laurea Lettere Classiche. Classical Philology, summa cum laude

Thesis: "Problemi critico-testuali e interpretativi nei Punica di Silio Italico." Supervisors: Enrico Flores (director), Domenico Tomasco.

Academic Appointments

Affiliate Assistant Professor, Department of Classics, University of Dallas, 2015 - present

Assistant Professor, Department of Classical Studies, University of Michigan, 2008 - 2015

Lecturer, Department of Classical Studies, University of Michigan, 2007 - 2008

Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Classical Studies, University of Michigan, 2006 - 2007

Assistant Professor, Department of Classics, Kenyon College, 2003 - 2006

Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Classics, Swarthmore College, 2002 - 2003

Research Investigator Associate, Department of Classics, Princeton University, 2001 - 2002

Recent Courses

Current Courses

Caesar: Bellum Civile (CLL 3V50)
Sport and Spectacle of Ancient Greece and Rome (CLC 4350)
First-Year Latin II (CLL 1302)

Recent Courses

Ovid: Metamorphoses (CLL 3V50)
Lucan (CLL 3V50)
Roman Historians: Sallust (CLL 3328)
Classical Mythology (CLC 4340)
First-Year Latin I (CLL 1301)
Second-Year Latin I and II (CLL 2311 and 2312)
First-Year Greek I and II (CLG 1301 and 1302)

Research Interests

Lucan; Latin literature (esp. post-Augustan and early Latin); Greek and Roman epic; Gender and Identity in Greek and Latin texts; Reception; Greek and Latin Meter; Mythology; Textual criticism; History of classical scholarship and the manuscript tradition of Greek and Latin texts; Literary Theory; Interdisciplinary approaches to literary texts; Africa in the ancient Mediterranean

Selected Publications


Lucan, De Bello Civili, Book IV, edition of the Latin text, English translation, and commentary. Texte und Kommentare, vol. 33. Berlin/NewYork: De Gruyter, 2010.

(Edited) Brill's Companion to Lucan. Leiden/Boston: Brill, 2011.

Articles and Chapters:

"Tears in Lucan" in ed. Thomas Baier, Götter und menschliche Willensfreiheit: Von Lucan bis Silius Italicus. Zetemata: Monographien zum klassichen Altertumswissenschaft, vol. 42. Munich: Beck, 2012.

"The Idea of Africa in Lucan" in African Athena: New Agendas, ed. Daniel Orrells, Gurminder Bhambra, and Tessa Roynon, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011.

"And Then It Rained Shields: Revising Nature and Roman Myth" in Brill's Companion to Lucan, pp. 383-398, ed. by P. Asso. Leiden/Boston: Brill, 2011.

"Queer Consolation: Melior's Dead Boy in Statius' Silvae 2.1." American Journal of Philology (2010) 663-697.

"Apostrophe in Lucan." Materiali e discussioni per l'analisi dei testi classici 61 (2008) 245-57.

"Il genere consolatorio da Stazio alle letterature europee." Vichiana (2008) 176-96.

"Human Divinity: Hercules in the Punica." Vichiana (2003) 221-41; reprinted with revisions as "Hercules as a Paradigm of Roman Heroism" in Brill's Companion to Silius Italicus, ed. by Antony Augoustakis, 179-192. Leiden/Boston: Brill, 2010.

"The Function of the Fight: Hercules and Antaeus in Lucan." Vichiana (2002) 59-73.

"Passione eziologica nei Punica di Silio Italico: la morte di Pirene." Annali dell'Istituto Universitario Orientale di NapoliClasse di Lettere e Filosofia: Sezione Filologico-Letteraria = AIONfilol (2001) 215-32.

"Il palinsesto Pierpont Morgan 482."  Vichiana (1999) 15-16 (with M. Paladini).

"Passione eziologica nei Punica di Silio Italico: Trasimeno, Sagunto, Ercole e i Fabii."  Vichiana (1999) 75-87.

"A proposito dell'edizione di J. Delz, Sili Italici Punica, Stutgardiae, in aed. B. G. Teubneri, 1987, e di P. McGushin, The Transmission of the Punica of Silius Italicus, Amsterdam 1985." AIONfilol (1995) 329-35.

"A proposito di un manoscritto miscellaneo fiorentino contenente excerpta dai Punica di Silio Italico." Vichiana (1993) 126-28.


“Africa in Roman Epic,” November 2014, University of Georgia, Athens, GA; March 2014, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI; October 2013, Skidmore College; February 2012, University of Toronto, ON, Canada; September 2011, Du Bois Institute, Harvard University.

“Africa in Lucan and Claudian,” November, 2012, “Lucain et Claudien face-à-face,” Fondation Hardt, Geneva, Switzerland.

 “Africa in Silius Italicus,” Pacific Rim Latin Conference, July 2011, University of Sidney, New South Wales, Australia.

 “Tears in Lucan,” June 2010, Villa Virgiliana, Cuma, Italy.

“Emotions and the rhetoric of fate in civil war: A case study in dacryology,” February 2010. Götter, Emotionen und Willensfreiheit im römischen Epos des 1. Jahrhunderts n. Chr. Institut für Klassische Philologie der Bayerischen Julius-Maximilians-Universität, Würzburg, Germany.

“Africa in Lucan, ” August 2009, Fédération Internationale des Associations des Études 

Classiques, Berlin, German. April 2009, Classical Association/Classical Association of Scotland, Glasgow, UK. February 2008, University of Michigan. June 2008, Université de Bordeaux. February 2007, Università degli Studi di Napoli “Federico II” & Univerisità degli Studi di Salerno.

“Roma: Una democrazia mancata,” May 2009 “Il destino della democrazia,” Network of Italian Scholars Abroad (NISA), Naples, Italy.

“Apostrophe in Lucan,” April 2009, Classical Association of the Mid-West and South, Minneapolis.

“Il genere consolatorio da Stazio alla letteratura europea,” February 2008, Università degli Studi di Napoli “Federico II.”

“Queer Consolation: Melior's Dead Boy in Statius' Silvae 2.1,” American Philological Association, January 2006, Montreal, Canada.

“The Evil of Mother Africa and Her Monsters in Flavian Epic: A Reading of Regulus’ Fight against the Serpent in the Punica,” April 2004, Classical Association of the Mid-West and South, St. Louis.

“And Then It Rained Shields: Lucan and the Roman Past,” January 2004, American Philological Association, San Francisco.

“Pariterque fleamus: Statius' Consolatory Manner in Silvae 2.1,” November 2003, Ohio Classical Conference, Kenyon College, Gambier.

“Sweet Dreams Are Made of This: Lucretius, DRN 4.907-1029 and the Sound of Images,”January 2001, American Philological Association.

“Melior's Glaucias: (Statius Silvae 2.1),” April 2000, Classical Association of the Atlantic States

“Passione eziologica nei Punica di Silio Italico,” Università degli Studi di Napoli ‘Federico II,’ January 24, 2000.

“The Homeric Hymn to Aphrodite: Crossing the Boundary of (Im)mortality,” June 1997, Princeton University. 


Book Reviews

Classical World 2012: P. Roche, Lucan: De bello ciuili, Book 1, edited with Introduction, Text, and Commentary. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009.

New England Classical Journal 2005: Charles Stanley Ross (trans.), Publius Papinius Statius. The Thebaid. Seven Against Thebes. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2004.

Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2005: P. Esposito/E.M. Ariemma, eds. Lucano e la tradizione dell'epica latina. Atti del Convegno Internazionale di Studi, Fisciano-Salerno, 19-20 ottobre 2001. Naples: Loffredo, 2004.

Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2004.11.02: D.R.S. Bailey, Statius, Vols. II & III: Thebaid and Achilleid. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003.

Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2003.10.05 D.R.S. Bailey, Statius, Vol. I: Silvae. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003.

Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2002.07.36 E. Narducci, Lucano: un'epica contro l'impero. Rome/Bari: Laterza, 2002.

Awards & Honors

Grants and Awards

2011 – 2012: W. E. B. Du Bois Fellowship, Harvard University.

2001: ETC WebStudio, Princeton University: Intensive Web Design Workshop

2001 – 2002: Summer Stipend in the Humanities and Social Sciences, Princeton University

1998: Stanley F. Seeger Award, Program in Hellenic Studies, Princeton University

1998: Thomas F. Curley III Award, Department of Classics, Princeton University

1997: “New Tools for Teaching and Research” workshop, Princeton University

1993 – 1996: Istituto Universitario Orientale (Naples, Italy): study-abroad national grant (recipient for two academic years: Princeton University)

1990 – 1993: Istituto Italiano per gli Studi Filosofici (Naples, Italy), grant recipient for three academic years