Elizabeth Minchin

Professor of Classics
ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
T: 61255106

Areas of expertise

  • Latin And Classical Greek Literature 200510
  • Language Studies 2003
  • Latin And Classical Greek Languages 200305
  • Literary Studies 2005

Research interests

My research focuses on the Homeric epics as oral poetry: the composition of the Homeric epics;
Homer and memory; Homer's narrative; the speech Homer attributes to his characters; the reception of the Homeric epics through time. As a member of the ARC-funded ANU-University of Melbourne 2010 Gallipoli Project I developed a strong research interest in social memory and the landscape of the Dardanelles region, which I am directing to new projects on myth and memory and landscape within that region, and their reception.


My first career after graduating from Sydney University was as a secondary school teacher of
languages ancient and modern. I subsequently completed an MA and PhD at the Australian
National University in Ancient Greek literature (my PhD thesis was a study of the role that
memory played in the composition of the Homeric epics) and joined the Classics staff in the
Classics Program (now the Centre for Classical Studies) at the ANU. Teaching the languages and literature of Ancient Greece and Rome--that is, helping students to appreciate why the literature of these ancient cultures continues to be so influential--is what drives me. I have also enjoyed teaching classes in social history. The awards I have won for the quality of my teaching reflect my commitment to doing this well.

Researcher's projects

1. Troy, landscape and memory

2. The legend of Hero and Leander on the Hellespont and its transmission through time

3. Heritage in the landscape: the so-called heroic tumuli in the Troad

4. 'Translation' and Transformation: Alice Oswald's Excavation of the Iliad

5. The Odyssey after the Iliad: ties that bind

6. Repetition in Homeric epics: cognitive and linguistic perspectives

7. Homer and the stewardship of memory

8. Theoretical approaches to the description of landscape

9. Speech acts in Homer

Current student projects



Aspects of hospitality in the Homeric epics (PhD)

Echoes of Homeric Epics in Doctor Who


Past student projects

Many studies of the Homeric epics

The reception of the Homeric epics 

Babrius and Aesopian fables

Tragic props and cognitive function (ancient drama)

Minoan iconography

The rose in Greek and Latin literature

Horace on ancient travel

 Medicina domestica: medicina and power in the non-urban Roman household

The judgment of Paris in art and literature

The reception of the Homeric epics in contemporary literature (PhD)

Similes in the Odyssey (MPhil)




Projects and Grants

Grants information is drawn from ARIES. To add or update Projects or Grants information please contact your College Research Office.

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Updated:  16 July 2024 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers