Dr Evert van Emde Boas

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Academic Background

I received my BA and MA in Classics from the University of Amsterdam (2001-2005) before coming to Oxford for graduate work (MSt 2005-2006, Magdalen College; DPhil 2005-2010 Corpus Christi College). I then returned to the Netherlands for a variety of teaching positions (University of Groningen 2010-2014, Leiden University 2011-2014, University of Amsterdam 2010-2014, and VU University Amsterdam 2010-2011). I have been back in Oxford since 2014, first as Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Calleva Research Centre at Magdalen, as Stipendiary Lecturer in Classics at Oriel, and now as Leventis Research Fellow at Merton.

Research Interests

My research focuses on the application of cognitive and linguistic approaches and methods to Ancient Greek literature. My first monograph is a reading of Euripides' play Electra through the lens of modern linguistics. At Merton I will be preparing my second monograph, on the topic of characterization through language/style in Greek literature (looking at a wider range of genres, including epic, tragedy, historiography, and oratory).

I am also a member of an interdisciplinary group (Classics, English, Psychology) at the Calleva Centre, Magdalen College, investigating the experience of theatre audiences through psychological experiments. Finally, I work on Greek grammar: I am the lead author of a new reference grammar of Greek, to appear with CUP in 2018.


I have taught widely on Greek and Latin language and literature, both in the UK and in the Netherlands. At Merton, I am responsible for most of the teaching in Greek language in literature (including such options as Homer: Iliad, Greek Texts and Contexts, Greek Core, and Greek Tragedy). I am always happy to discuss Greek linguistics and literature with graduate students.


Full Publications: evert_van_emde_boas_full_list_of_publications.pdf

Selected Publications:

fc. 2018 - E. van Emde Boas, A. Rijksbaron, L. Huitink, and M. de Bakker, The Cambridge Grammar of Classical Greek, Cambridge UP (scheduled publication May 2018).
2018 - K. De Temmerman and E. van Emde Boas (eds.), Characterization in Ancient Greek Literature, Studies in Ancient Greek Narrative, vol. 4, Leiden: Brill.
2017 - E. van Emde Boas, Language and Character in Euripides’ Electra, Oxford UP.

2017 - E. van Emde Boas, ‘Analyzing Agamemnon: Conversation Analysis and Particles in Greek Tragic Dialogue’, Classical Philology 112.4
2017 - F. Budelmann, R. Dunbar, S. Duncan, E. van Emde Boas, L. Maguire, B. Teasdale, and J. Thompson, ‘Cognition, Endorphins, and the Literary Response to Tragedy’, Cambridge Quarterly 46.3: 229-50.
2016 - R. Dunbar, B. Teasdale, J. Thompson, F. Budelmann, S. Duncan, E. van Emde Boas, L. Maguire, ‘Emotional Arousal When Watching Drama Increases Pain Threshold and Social Bonding’, Royal Society Open Science 2016.3.160288, http://rsos.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/3/9/160288
2015 - E. van Emde Boas, ‘The Tutor’s Beard: Gender-Specific Communication and Speaker-Line Attribution in Greek Tragedy’, Mnemosyne 68.4: 543-68.

  • The Cambridge Grammar of Classical Greek

  • Experiencing Tragic Messenger Speeches

  • Form and Function in Greek Grammar

  • The Cambridge Grammar of Classical Greek. A new reference grammar for Classical Greek: aims and principles

  • Introduction

  • More