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Joshua Billings

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Bio

I studied Classics, German, and Comparative Literature at Harvard and Oxford. Before coming to Princeton in 2015, I held a research fellowship at Cambridge, and taught at Yale for three years.

My research focuses on ancient Greek literature and philosophy and modern intellectual history, with a particular concentration on tragedy. After a first book on modern conceptions of tragedy and the tragic (Genealogy of the Tragic: Greek Tragedy and German Philosophy, Princeton 2014), I am now working on a study of fifth-century (BCE) drama and intellectual culture provisionally entitled The Stage of Thinking: The Philosophical Poetics of Ancient Greek Drama, which will be published by Princeton in 2021. In the book, I read drama as intellectual history, using discursive or scenic forms as a bridge between different works and genres to recover philosophical conversation before the institution of philosophy as a discipline. In addition, I am co-editing the Cambridge Companion to the Sophists (with Christopher Moore) and working on articles on Euripides' Bacchae and Nietzsche's philology.

I teach courses in Greek language and literature, classical reception, as well as in modern intellectual history and critical theory. I am happy to hear from students with interests in these areas. I believe that a university's educational mission extends beyond its student body and immediate surroundings, and teach regularly through the Prison Teaching Initiative.