Dr. Emily Baragwanath
Emily Baragwanath completed her M.A. (2001) in Ancient History at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, before taking up a Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford (DPhil in Classics, 2005). Her main area of scholarly interest is the literary techniques employed by Greek historians in their construction of historical narratives. Her book Motivation and Narrative in Herodotus (Oxford University Press, 2008), winner of Oxford’s Conington Prize and the CAMWS Award for Outstanding Publication 2010, explores the representation of human motivation in Herodotus’ Histories. The Greek historians’ use of mythology as a mode of narrative and explanation alongside the historical mode, and the relationship between the historians and their poetic predecessors, are topics central to a volume she has co-edited on Myth, Truth, and Narrative in Herodotus (Oxford University Press, 2012). Other recent projects have addressed Aeschylus and history, intertextuality in Greek historiography, and virtual history in Herodotus.
She will be at Heidelberg University as an Alexander von Humboldt Fellow and William M. Calder III fellow, hosted by Professor Jonas Grethlein, from March 2013 through the end of June 2014, at work on a book-length study of the fourth-century BC Athenian author Xenophon. Entitled Women, Narrative, and Agency in Xenophon, this monograph will examine Xenophon’s representation of women and how this representation relates to larger issues of friendship and leadership, at the same time as it investigates broader questions about Xenophon’s approach to history, narrative, explanation and literary invention. She envisages that such a cross-genre study will enable us to capture a better sense of Xenophon’s character as an author and historian, and of the nature and significance of his literary achievement. Xenophon’s unique cross-cultural perspective supplies the backdrop for another key dimension of the project: the consideration of how gender polarities inform and interact with other important binaries, especially that of ethnicity. Concurrently with the monograph she will be working on the ‘Xenophon’ volume for the Cambridge University Press series Greece and Rome New Surveys.