Graduate Teaching

In graduate teaching I am dedicated to teaching ancient Greek political thought both to students with Greek (primarily those enrolled in the interdepartmental Program in Classical Philosophy or certificate in Classical Philosophy) and to students without Greek interested in these subjects (primarily those enrolled in political theory).  I also advise and occasionally formally teach on environmental ethics, political theory, and climate change.  I have advised many students in graduate research at PhD and Master’s level in ancient political theory, and also in modern political theory and normative political philosophy. 

The following students on whose committees I have served at Princeton have completed their PhDs (in Politics unless otherwise noted):

Emily Hulme Kozey (Classics), 2019: Philosophia kai Philotechnia: the Techne Theme in the Platonic Dialogues: Seymour Reader in Ancient History and Philosophy, Ormond College, Melbourne

Merrick Anderson (Philosophy), 2018:  Justice and Prospering: Ancient Debates, Disagreements, and Dilemmas: postdoctoral fellow in the Philosophy Department, Princeton 

John DiIulio, 2018: Completely Free: J.S. Mill on Individuality and Sociality: postdoctoral fellow in the Madison Program, Princeton

Theodore (Ted) Lechterman, 2016: Donors’ Democracy: Private Philanthropy and Political Morality (PhD 2016): postdoctoral fellow at Justitia Amplificata, Frankfurt; previously, postdoc at the Stanford McCoy Family Center for Ethics in Society & Center for Philanthropy and Civil Society, Stanford

Trevor Latimer, 2015: The Localist Tradition in America: Lecturer, Dartmouth University; previously, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Georgia and Postdoctoral fellow, Political Theory Project at Brown

Michael Lamb, 2014: A Commonwealth of Hope: Virtue, Rhetoric, and Religion in Augustine’s Political Thought: Assistant Professor of Politics, Ethics, and Interdisciplinary Humanities and Director of the Program in Leadership and Character at Wake Forest University; previously McDonald-Templeton Post-Doctoral Fellowship in the Faculty of Theology and Religion, Oxford University

Joseph Clair (Religion), 2013:  Discerning the Good in the Letters and Sermons of Augustine: Dean of the College of Christian Studies, Liberal Arts, and Honors, and Associate Professor of Theology, George Fox University

Melissa Moschella, 2012: Parental Rights in Education: Assistant Professor of Medical Ethics in the Department of Medicine at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons; previously, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Catholic University of America

Julie Rose, 2012: Leisure: The Resource of Time in Theories of Distributive Justice: Assistant Professor of Government, Dartmouth College, previously, postdoctoral fellowships at the Center for Ethics and Society at Stanford and in the Political Theory Project at Brown

Joshua Vandiver, 2012: Ambition and Rebellion: Citizen Motivation and the Spirited Passions in the Political Thought of Plato and Xenophon: Assistant Professor, Ball State University; previously, Visiting Assistant Professor at Williams and at the University of Chicago

I have also served as the fourth reader at the public oral of a number of other Princeton students who have successfully completed their doctorates on topics including Spinoza; Richard Price and his critics; popular sovereignty and Roman law in the early modern period; global justice, and migration. 

In most alternating years (next scheduled for Fall 2019), I offer a graduate seminar or reading course, in Fall 2019 on ‘Political Theory, Athens to Augustine’.  This course normally attracts a large enrollment of graduate students from several departments, often including Classics, English, History, Philosophy, and Religion as well as Politics. 

Graduate seminars that I have taught at Princeton include:

S 2020:      POL 507 / CLA 507 / PHI 507 / HLS 507, Plato's Statesman (half-seminar)

S 2019:      POL 507 / CLA 507 / PHI 507 / HLS 507, Plato's Republic Books 8 and 9 (half-seminar); POL 562, Political Theory and Climate Change (half-seminar)

F 2015:      POL 510, Texts in Ancient and Medieval Political Theory

S 2015:      POL 507 / CLA 507 / PHI 507 / HLS 507, Plato’s Statesman (half-seminar with additional optional reading course in Greek)

S 2014:      POL 501, Solitude and Sociability

F 2010:      POL 511, Knowledge and Politics

S 2010:      POL 510, Founder-Legislators in Plato, Rousseau, and Nietzsche

I have also taught bespoke graduate reading courses - designed in conjunction with particular students, a special strength of the Princeton graduate program - on the following topics (noting that I was on leave from teaching in 2017-18):

F 2017: Plato's Laws Book III half-course: one Politics graduate student; graduate student auditors from Classics (1), Philosophy (5), and Comp Lit (1); postdoctoral auditor, Philosophy (one); faculty auditors, Philosophy and Classics (one each)

S 2016:    Classical Rhetoric half-course: two Politics graduate students (one a visiting Procter student); also auditing, two from Classics and six from Philosophy

S 2015:     Reading Plato’s Statesman in Greek half-course: one Politics graduate student, one from Religion, one (visiting) from Philosophy, one auditing from Classics, one auditing from Philosophy

            S 2015:     Platonic Political Theory half-course: four Politics graduate students

F 2013:     Ancient and Medieval Political Theory: two Politics graduate students, one from Philosophy

S 2012:     Platonic Thought (POL 787): one graduate student from Politics, two from Religion, one from Classics

F 2011:    Ancient and Medieval Political Theory (POL 702): three Politics graduate students


My PhD students at the University of Cambridge, where I taught from 1994-2009, were registered variously in the Faculties of History and Philosophy, and worked on topics including theoretical and practical knowledge in Plato’s thought, Nietzsche’s late political thought and its relationship to that of Plato, migration, climate change, human rights, and the capability to be healthy.  Among them are:

Sridhar Venkatapuram, on the capability to be healthy, appointed to a permanent lectureship (equivalent to an American tenured post) in the Public Policy School of King’s College London and to the directorship of the graduate master’s level programme in Global Health and Social Justice, from 2013 onward; appointed Senior Lecturer at King’s College London in 2016.

Katy (Catharine) Long, on the political theory of refugee repatriation, appointed to a permanent lectureship (equivalent to an American tenured post) in International Development in the School of Social and Political Science at the University of Edinburgh from autumn 2013; resigned for personal reasons.

Hugo Halferty-Drochon, on Nietzsche’s political theory, appointed to a five-year postdoctoral research fellowship at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities at the University of Cambridge from 2013 onward; appointed Lecturer at the University of Nottingham in 2017.    

(One other completed his PhD as a mature student and has not sought full-time academic employment; two others successfully received their PhDs but eventually left academia, one from a tenure-track position in Canada and the other post-PhD to return to a family business.)

At Master’s level (M.Phil. in Cambridge), my students’ topics for the inter-faculty M.Phil. in Political Philosophy and Intellectual History included Plato, Augustine, and Nietzsche’s writings on the Greeks, as well as a wide range of topics in modern political theory. I also advised students for the M. Phil. in Classics (Faculty of Classics) on topics including the interpretation of Plato’s Laws and George Grote’s reading of Plato.

I have examined a number of doctoral dissertations at the University of Cambridge (for the Faculties of Classics, History, and Social and Political Sciences) and also served as an external PhD examiner for the London School of Economics and for Birkbeck, University of London. I was the first External Examiner of the M.A. in the History of Ideas at Birkbeck, University of London, serving from 2006-08.