Michael Griffin

  • Greek and Roman philosophy
  • Philosophical education in antiquity
  • Neoplatonism
  • Educational technology

I study the philosophers of the ancient Graeco-Roman world, especially the vibrant intellectual traditions that emerged around Plato and Aristotle during their lives and later, during the rise and fall of the Roman Empire. I am particularly interested in the practice of philosophical education (paideia) in late antiquity, and the role of philosophy in society. My recent books study the ancient reception of two classic “first books” in philosophy, Aristotle’s Categories and Plato’s Alcibiades, which respectively trained students in the rudiments of logic and virtue. My current projects include the Ancient Commentators series of translations, which I co-edit with Richard Sorabji, and a cross-disciplinary study of the cognitive and psychological effects of education in philosophy and the liberal arts.

  • Aristotle’s Categories in the Early Roman Empire. Oxford University Press, 2015.
  • Olympiodorus: Life of Plato and On Plato First Alcibiades 1–9 and Olympiodorus: On Plato First Alcibiades 10–28. Translated with scholarly introduction and notes. Bloomsbury Academic, 2014 and 2016.
  • “Ammonius and His School.” Brill Handbook of the Ancient Reception of Aristotle. Ed. Andrea Falcon. Leiden: Brill, 2016: 394–414.
  • “Proclus on the Ethics of Self-Constitution.” Causation and Creation in Late Antiquity. Ed. Anna Marmodoro and Brian D. Prince. Cambridge University Press. 202-219.
  • “Universals, Education, and Philosophical Methodology in Later Neoplatonism”. Universals in Ancient Philosophy. Ed. Riccardo Chiaradonna and Gabriele Galluzzo. Pisa: Edizioni della Scuola Normale, 2014. 353-380.
  • “Pliable Platonism? Olympiodorus and the Profession of Philosophy in Sixth-Century Alexandria”. Plato in the Third Sophistic. Ed. Ryan C. Fowler. De Gruyter, 2014. 73-11.
  • “Which ‘Athenodorus’ Commented on Aristotle’s Categories?”. Classical Quarterly 63.1. 2013. 199-208.

Please see my personal faculty webpage for further detail.

  • “The Early Aristotelian Commentators on the Criterion of Truth,” invited lecture, Università degli Studi di Milano (Italy), Conference on Hellenistic and Late Antique Philosophy, June 2015.
  • “Themistius on Rhetoric, Philosophy, and Excellence,” invited lecture, University of Oxford, Philosophy and Late Antiquity Seminar, May 2015.
  • “Andronicus of Rhodes on Aristotle’s Categories”, invited lecture, Classical Philosophy Conference, Princeton University, December 2014.
  • “The Alexandrian Scale of Virtue”, invited lecture, “Aristotle Transferred” Conference, Berlin, October 2014.
  • “Aristotle & Alexander on Mental States”, invited symposium presenter, American Philosophical Association (Pacific), March 2013.

I was born and raised in Vancouver, and completed my undergraduate degree in Classics at UBC’s Department of Classical, Near Eastern & Religious Studies. I subsequently completed my master’s degree and doctorate at the University of Oxford, where my research focused on ancient (Greek and Roman) philosophy. After a postdoctoral year of research with the Ancient Commentators on Aristotle project, I joined UBC’s departments of Classical, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies and Philosophy. I am now joint general editor of the Ancient Commentators on Aristotle project with Prof. Richard Sorabji.

Courses Currently Taught

Winter 2016
No CLST course(s) were found for W2016 term.