Stephan Nitu

My research highlights the methodological pitfalls of attempting to quantify economic development in the Greek world. Current scholarship is marred by fallacies related to economic data collection and processing, and this thesis aims to reframe the question of economic development in a manner that is more robust, emic, and multidimensional. What did a transaction mean to the Athenians? Does our attempt to compute standards of living say more about our own conception of flourishing than that of the Athenians?

In future projects I plan to approach history through the “positive humanities”, as an aid to study human flourishing. With wellbeing rightly becoming a primary social concern, historians can add to our nuanced understanding of happiness, resilience, and strengths of character in ways that will enrich both the academic literature and our own lives. My other interests include lived experience—whether historians can or cannot reach such lifeworlds with our methods and theories—and discourses on the value of the humanities. Humanities Forward, a co-edited volume with Arlene Holmes-Henderson and featuring policymakers, academics, and students’ views on the humanities’ relevance, is under contract with Liverpool University Press.