Brian McPhee

Brian McPhee

Visiting Assistant Professor, Classical Studies


  • B.A., University of South Florida, 2013
  • M.A., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2016
  • Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2020

Research Areas

  • Hellenistic poetry
  • Ancient epic
  • Intertextuality, narratology, and reader-response theory

About Brian McPhee

My research focuses on Greek poetry, with a special emphasis on the Hellenistic period. I am currently preparing a monograph on the subject of Apollonius Rhodius’ reception of that other branch of Homeric hexameter poetry, the Homeric Hymns, in his epic Argonautica. I argue that Apollonius positions the Hymns alongside the Iliad and Odyssey as equally authoritative models for his own work, which is, indeed, an epic poem framed as a neo-Homeric hymn dedicated to its own heroic protagonists, the Argonauts. Beyond Apollonius, I have published articles and given talks on a wide variety of authors in both Latin and Greek, poetry and prose. Some of my recurrent interests include mythology, intertextuality, narratology, ancient constructions of sex, gender, and ethnicity, and the role of inference in producing literary meaning. After my current book project, I am planning a study of Ovid’s Metamorphoses focusing on how the poet effects foreshadowing and suspense within the framework of a highly repetitive plotline of bodily transformation in each of the epic’s individual episodes.