Harvey Yunis

  • Yunis
Andrew W. Mellon Professor
Professor of Humanities
Ph.D., Harvard University
229 Rayzor Hall
Research and Teaching: 

Ancient Greek rhetoric and literature; ancient Greek political thought

In my research I focus on the prose literature of ancient Greece, from its beginnings in the fifth century BCE to the Greek rhetoricians, historians, philosophers, and essayists of the high Roman Empire. I specialize, however, in the classical period of fifth- and fourth-century Athens. I have published scholarly editions of Demosthenes’s speech On the Crown and Plato’s dialogue Phaedrus. I have recently completed work on the publication of new papyrus fragments of On the Crown, a project that involved undergraduate students of ancient Greek from the start. I am currently working on an annotated translation of Aristotle’s Rhetoric, and on other projects that concern the intersections of rhetoric, politics, and philosophy.

In my teaching I avoid the lecture format whenever possible and work instead to increase student participation through class discussions and written assignments. I encourage students to seek out new ideas and perspectives but always in tandem with rigorous criticism. Students respond to this approach with enthusiasm.

Selected Publications: 
  • Plato, Phaedrus (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011). Greek text and commentary.
  • Demosthenes, Speeches 18-19: On the Crown and On the Dishonest Embassy (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2005). Annotated translation.
  • Ed., Written Texts and the Rise of Literate Culture in Ancient Greece (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003). Paperback reissue 2007.
  • Demosthenes, On the Crown (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001). Greek text and commentary.
  • Taming Democracy: Models of Political Rhetoric in Classical Athens (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1996).