Dr Sonia Pertsinidis

BA/LLB (ANU), PhD (ANU), GradDipLegPrac (ANU), FHEA
Lecturer and Convenor of Ancient Greek, Centre for Classical Studies
ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
T: +61 2 6197 0057

Areas of expertise

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

Research interests

Dr Pertsinidis researches ancient Greek literature, focussing particularly on lesser known works and authors, 'submerged literature' and non-canonical works. Her research covers a broad range of genres, from ancient Greek fable collections, to literary character sketches, to the literary works of the Second Sophistic period. Her research interests also extend into ancient Greek philosophy, rhetoric, drama and mythology. 


Dr Pertsinidis specializes in ancient Greek literature. Her first book is entitled Theophrastus' Characters: A New Introduction (Routledge, 2018). This book introduces the reader to Theophrastus, who was Aristotle's colleague and immediate successor, and to his work known as the Characters, a collection of thirty amusing descriptions of character types who lived in Athens in the fourth century BCE. The book explores the ethical, comic and rhetorical dimensions of the character portraits and demonstrates the enduring influence of Theophrastus' Characters upon ancient and modern literary traditions.

Dr Pertsinidis' current work involves research on fables, including the comic biography from the first/second centuries CE known as the Life of Aesop. This research is partially funded by an Early Career Award from the Australasian Society for Classical Studies in 2016 and an award from Australasian Women in Ancient World Studies in 2016. She has previously published articles on Aristophanes' use of fables and on the role of fables and stories in classical education.

Dr Pertsinidis will be teaching the following courses in 2019:

  • Traditional Grammar (CLAS1001/2011/6001): Semester 1 
  • Intermediate Ancient Greek I (GREK2121/6121): Semester 1
  • Rhetoric: The Art of Persuasion in the Ancient and Modern Worlds (CLAS3000/6000): Semester 2
  • Continuing Ancient Greek (GREK 1102/2119/6112): Semester 2

Dr Pertsinidis has presented many papers at conferences and seminars in Australia and overseas including the following:

  • 2018 Tierrede in antiker Literatur (Postdam University, Germany): 'Animals speaking with emotion in the fables of Babrius'
  • 2018 History Seminar (University of Sydney): 'The Philosopher and the Playwright: Reconsidering Theophrastus and Menander'
  • 2018 ASCS Conference 39 (Brisbane): 'It's all a matter of style: a new reading of Theophrastus' Characters'

Dr Pertsinidis serves as a member of the committee of the Friends of the ANU Classics Museum, publishes a regular Classics blog and regularly engages in outreach activities.

Researcher's projects

Studies in the fable tradition and the Life of Aesop

Available student projects

Dr Pertsinidis is available to supervise HDR projects relating to studies of ancient Greek literature, philosophy, drama and mythology. 

Current student projects

Rod Harvey, "The botanical writings of Theophrastus of Eresus"

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Updated:  21 January 2019 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers