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Nolan S. Epstein

Nolan S. Epstein

PhD Candidate - Language and Literature
MA (Humanities; University of Chicago 2013)
BA (Classics; University of Chicago 2013)

Originally from the Boston area, Nolan graduated from the University of Chicago in June of 2013 with his MA and BA having written his thesis on the political thought of Theognis and Hannah Arendt. 

A student of Archaic Greek lyric, his interest is in bringing new, interdisciplinary methodologies to the study of context, performance, and meaning. Specifically, Nolan is eager to pursue research that affords greater contextual insights into an audience's (or performer's) cognitive experience of ancient poetry, or, on the other hand, into the relationship between poetic production/performance and the culture of (socio-)scientific thought (e.g., medicine, politics, musical theory, ancient geography, aesthetics). His dissertation, "Choral Orientations: Spatial Cognition and Geopoetics in Pindar, Bakkhylidēs and Simōnidēs", is a study into the variety of spatial experiences (or, 'orientations') generated by the performances of late choral. By adapting models from the field of spatial cognition, the project aims to demonstrate the patterns of geographic thinking that structure the conventional explorations and rhetorics of space (i.e., the, 'geopoetics') in the late choral poets. In his future research, Nolan intends not only to apply the spatial model of his dissertation to additional lyric poets of the Archaic or other periods (and languages), but also to further pursue his interest in cognitive studies by investigating the intersection of literary embodiment and materiality (space being one example of material presence in literary culture).

Aside from language and culture instruction pertaining to antiquity, Nolan is also excited to teach material outside of the classics -- for instance, philosophy and science/medicine, comparative literature and performance studies, or political science. Hobbies include jazz and classical music, foreign cinema, hiking, watching or attending major league baseball games, producing hand-drawn maps, and cooking/baking.