Bryant Kirkland

A photo of Bryant Kirkland
E-mail: Office: Dodd Hall 247M

Associate Professor

Fields of Interest: Imperial Greek Literature, Herodotus, Ancient Reception Studies


  • PhD, Classics, Yale University, 2016
  • MA, with distinction, Classics, University College London, 2009
  • AB, magna cum laude, Classics, Davidson College, 2007


My research interests lie in Greek literature and have recently centered on the intersections of ancient historiography (especially Herodotus), ancient literary criticism, and ancient reception studies. My first book, Herodotus and Imperial Greek Literature (Oxford University Press, 2022)examines the diverse reception of Herodotus in specifically non-historiographic texts by Greek writers living amid Roman rule. It argues that Imperial Greek writers recognized a set of Herodotean intellectual virtues that informed their own enactments of authorial persona, aesthetic and ethical criticism, irony, and the contingent definitions of Greekness under Rome. The book was reviewed in the Times Literary Supplement and long-listed for the Anglo-Hellenic League’s Runciman Award. Separately, I have written on historiographic features in the fragmentary novelist Antonius Diogenes; literary impersonation in the pseudo-Herodotean Life of Homer; the meaning of tradition in Plutarch’s On the Malice of Herodotus; political resonances in Dionysius of Halicarnassus’s literary criticism; and concepts of friendship in Plutarch. Ongoing projects include literary studies of Dio Chrysostom’s urban orations.

I teach a wide range of courses at UCLA, including the General Education course “Discovering the Greeks”; Greek prose composition; an undergraduate lecture course on ancient historiography; the graduate survey course in Imperial Greek literature; a course on Black Classicism; and graduate seminars (most recently on Dio Chrysostom). I am always happy to meet with students interested in Imperial Greek literature and/or reception studies.