Alexandre Johnston

PhD Student - Classics

  • School of History, Classics and Archaeology

Contact details


I went to school in Strasbourg, France, and studied for an MA (Honours) in Classics at Edinburgh and the Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich (2008-12) before returning to Edinburgh as a postgraduate, first for an MSc by Research (2012-13), and then for a PhD (2013-), funded by the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland. In 2015, I held a research fellowship at the University of Verona, and I am now a fellow of the 2015-16 Advanced Seminar in the Humanities at Venice International University. I have presented my research at various seminars and conferences in the UK, France, Italy, and Greece. 

Undergraduate teaching

I have taught on first and second-year Greek courses, both beginner (1a/1b) and intermediate (1c/1d/2a/2b). 

Research summary

My research focuses on Greek poetry, particularly of the archaic and classical periods. My doctoral thesis, entitled ‘Archaic Time, Knowledge, and Causation in Sophoclean Tragedy’, explores the place and role in Sophocles’ extant plays of a constellation of ideas about the human condition, the world, and the gods most commonly associated with archaic Greek literature (broadly speaking, from Homer to Pindar). It traces both the influence of these ideas in Sophocles’ plays, and the ways in which they are appropriated and transformed in a tragic context. Other (related) interests include the poetry of Pindar, the relationship between Greek and Near-Eastern literatures, and the reception of Greek tragedy in German Idealist philosophy. 

Johnston, A. C. (forthcoming, 2016), ‘“Rayon du soleil”: un écho pindarique dans l’Antigone de Sophocle’, in Coin-Longeray, S. (ed.), 'Les intentions de la citation' ('Les Cahiers d’ALLHiS' 4).