Associate Professor and Chair, Classics; Associate Professor of Philosophy
Classics and Philosophy
Grace Ledbetter, Associate Professor and Chair, Classics and Associate Professor of Philosophy, has an A. B. from Bryn Mawr College, an MA in philosophy from The University of Virginia, and a Ph. D. in Classics from Cornell University (1996). She was a Townsend Traveling Fellow at Corpus Christi College, Oxford (1994-5).
She holds a joint appointment in Classics and Philosophy and specializes in Ancient Philosophy and Greek Poetry. She regularly teaches courses at all levels on Greek and Latin languages, Plato, the history of ancient philosophy, Homer, Greek tragedy, Greek lyric poetry, Greek religion, and Greek myth in 20th Century performing arts.
Her book, Poetics Before Plato: Interpretation and Authority in Early Greek Theories of Poetry (Princeton University Press 2003), examines theories of poetry in the early Greek literary and philosophical traditions. She has also published articles on causation in Plato, on Achilles and Patroclus in Homer's Iliad, on Sophocles' Antigone, and on the Stoic theory of emotion.
Ledbetter has recently written articles on the notion of an implied author in Plato, and on the problem of Parmenides' doxa.
Ledbetter's current interests focus on the role of Greek mythology and the classical tradition in the history of ballet. She is at work on a book called Apollo Dancing: the Greek Mythology of Neoclassical Ballet.
Ledbetter has founded, along with undergraduates, the Swarthmore student Classics journal, Hapax Legomenon.
Current and Recent Courses
- A.B. in Philosophy and Greek, Bryn Mawr College (1987)
- M.A. in Philosophy, University of Virginia (1989)
- Ph.D. in Classics (joint Program in Classics and Philosophy) Cornell University (1996)
- (2001-present) Associate Professor of Classics and Philosophy, Swarthmore College
- (1996-2001) Assistant Professor of Classics and Philosophy, Swarthmore College
- (1994-1995) Instructor of Classics and Philosophy, Swarthmore College
Fellowships and Awards
- Townsend Traveling Fellow, Corpus Christi College Oxford (1992-93)
- Mary Albertson Faculty Fellowship, Swarthmore College (1997-98)
- Ancient Philosophy
- Greek Poetry
- The relationship between philosophy and literature
- The Theology of the Greek Philosophyers
- The Metaphysics of Transcendence in the Poetry of Sappho
- Conflicting systems of truth and value in the Presocratics and early Plato.
- Pschoanalytic interpretation of mytho/logos debate in early Greek thought and in Plato
- Repetition and the Homeric gods
- Poetics before Plato: Interpretation and Authority in Early Greek Theories of Poetry. (Princeton University Press, 2003). (Amazon) - (Barnes & Noble) - Tripod
- Review of G. A. Scott, ed. Does Socrates Have a Method: Rethinking the Elenchus in Plato's.
- Dialogues and Beyond. Classical Review, forthcoming.
- Reasons and Causes in Plato: the Distinction between aijtiva and ai[tion Ancient Philosophy 19 (1999) 255-65.
- Antigone 1226-30: A Reply to Davidson, Hermes 1998.
- Reading Plato: A Discussion of Kenneth Sayre's Plato's Literary Garden: How to Read a Platonic Dialogue. Ancient Philosophy 17 (1997) 447-51.
- Review of Gower and Stokes, Socratic Questions: New Essays on the Philosophy of Socrates and its Significance. London, New York, Routledge, 1992. History of European Ideas 18 (1994) 598-600.
- 'Achilles' Self-Address,' American Journal of Philology 114 (1993) 481-491.
- 'The Propositional Content of Stoic Passions,' HellenisticPhilosophy: Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference in Greek Philosophy Vol II, 107-113 (Athens, 1993).
- 'Antigone 1226-30,' Classical Quarterly 41 (1991), 26-29.
- 'The Problem of Parmenides' Doxa' April 2005 (University of Texas at Austin)
- 'Socrates on Poetry' November 2000 (Haverford College).
- 'Homer's Theory of Poetry' December 1998 (Swarthmore College).
- 'Hesiod's Tyrannical Muse: Theogony 1-115' April 1998 (University of Colorado at Boulder)
- 'Supernatural Knowledge in Homeric Poetics' March 1998 (University of Pennsylvania)
- 'Socrates' Theory of Interpretation' Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy, October 1997 (SUNY Binghamton)
- 'The Murder of Aigisthus and the Failure of Representation in Euripides' Elektra' American Philological Association December, 1997 (Chicago)
- 'Is Poetry Good for the City?' International Center of Philosophy and Interdisciplinary Research, August 1996 (Olympia, Greece)
- 'Plato's Arguments for Forms,' December 1994 (Bryn Mawr College)
- 'Xenophanes, Fragment 1: A Philosophical Drinking Party,' Cornell/Harvard/Lille Seminar, 1993 (Lille, France)
- 'Achilles' Self-Address,' Cornell/Harvard/Lille Seminar on Homer, 1992 (Cornell University)
- 'The Propositional Content of Stoic Passions,' Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy, 1991 (CUNY); Fourth International Conference in Greek Philosophy, 1992 (Rhodes, Greece)
- Roman Civilization
- Beginning Latin
- The Philosophy of Socrates
- Beginning Greek
- Beginning Latin
- Homer's Iliad
- Homer's Odyssey
- Augustine's Confessions
- Ancient Philosophy Honors Seminar
- Greek Philosophers Honors Seminar
- Plato and the Dialogue Form
- Plato and Poetry
- Introduction to Philosophy
- Greek Tragedy Honors Seminar
- Plato and his Modern Readers
- Fellowships and Prizes ('02-'03, '03-'04, '04-'05)
- Writing Program Task Force ('00- '01)
- Committee on Academic Requirements ('95-96,'96-'97,'98-99', '99-'00, -02-'03, '03-'04)
- AAUP Executive Committee ('95-'96, '96-'97)
- Board Observer ('96-'97)
- Religion Department Search ('94-'95)
Other Professional Activities
- Revised bibliography for Encyclopedia of Philosophy article on Greek Drama (forthcoming, 2005)
- Chair of Aristotle session at APA Eastern Division 2000, Speakers: Alan Code and Aryeh Kosman.
- Secretary, New York Colloquium in Ancient Philosophy (1995-2000).
- Referee for Ancient Philosophy, Polity, Classical World, Journal of the History of Philosophy, TAPA, Clasical Antiquity.