Department of Classics
Cathedral of Learning
4200 Fifth Avenue
Christina Hoenig is an associate professor in Classics. She completed her Ph.D. thesis ‘Plato’s Timaeus in the Latin Tradition’ at the University of Cambridge, UK, in 2013. One of Dr. Hoenig research interests is the role of Greek-Latin translation in the Roman philosophical tradition from ca. the first century CE until Late Antiquity. She has explored this subject in various research articles on authors such as Cicero, Lucretius, Apuleius, Calcidius, and St. Augustine, mostly in the context of rhetoric, epistemology, natural philosophy, and metaphysics.
Her monograph Plato’s Timaeus and the Latin Tradition (Cambridge University Press, 2018) focuses on the Roman authors Cicero, Apuleius, Calcidius, and Augustine in their specific role as interpreters of Plato. It illustrates how each author created original new contexts and settings for the intellectual heritage he received and thereby contributed to the construction of the complex and multifaceted genre of Roman Platonism. The comprehensive and contextualized nature of her research counteracts more disintegrated views of the authors’ specific brands of Roman Platonism, and shows that each of them offers a coherent and nuanced treatment of Platonic doctrine.
More recently, Dr. Hoenig’s research has focused on a range of topics, including the socio- cultural status of medicine and medical knowledge during the era of the Second Sophistic, the development of philosophical methodology in Late Antiquity, and the debate about the interpretation of Plato’sCratylus, in particular, the role of the dialogue’s etymological section. She also has a keen interest in the environmental humanities, and is currently researching St. Augustine's attitude toward our natural environment and the correlation between it and our human nature. Of particular interests in this context are Augustine’s thoughts concerning those elements of our natural environment that appear hostile toward humans: what consequences we may draw from their existence concerning our moral condition, and what relationship we ought to build with our natural environment as a whole.
Dr. Hoenig has taught a variety of undergraduate and graduate courses in Classical literature, philosophy, and language, and has organized and presented at numerous interdisciplinary workshops and conferences. From 2015-2019, she served as the director of the Joint Graduate Program in Classics, Philosophy, and Ancient Science. She is an affiliated faculty member at Pitt’s Department of the History and Philosophy of Science. She currently serves as her department’s Director of Graduate Studies and as a member of Pitt’s Graduate Council.
Education & Training
- Ph.D. in Classics, Cambridge University, UK
- MPhil in Hebrew Studies, Cambridge University, UK
‘Apuleius' Platonism’, Oxford Bibliographies. Oxford University Press, 2019.
'Augustine and the Prophecy of Plato, Tim. 29c3,' in Pavlos, P., Janby, L.F., Tollefsen T.T., Emilsson, E. (eds.), Platonism and Christian Thought. Studies in Philosophy and Theology in Late Antiquity. Routledge, 2019.
‘Calcidius and the Creation of the Universe’, Rhizomata 2/1 (2014).
‘Εἰκὼς λόγος. Plato in Translation(s).’, Methodos. Savoirs et textes 13: Interpréter en contexte (2013).
My research focuses on the Roman and Greek philosophical writers from the 1st century BC to Late Antiquity. One of my central themes of interest is the translation of Greek philosophical vocabulary into Latin. In the past, I have also worked on Hebrew-Latin biblical translation. The larger part of my current research concentrates on the Latin Platonic tradition, especially on topics in natural philosophy and epistemology, but I am also interested in the Greek commentators on Plato and Aristotle.