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Robert Morstein-Marx

Professor of Classics
Office: 4052


Office Hours F16:
T/F, 10:00-11:00AM

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Robert Morstein-Marx is Professor of Classics. After his B.A. from the University of Colorado (Classics, History and Philosophy) and an Honors B.A. from the University of Oxford (Literae Humaniores), he earned his PhD in 1987 at UC Berkeley from the Graduate Group in Ancient History and Mediterranean Archaeology. He is the author of two books, the first,Hegemony to Empire: The Development of the Roman Imperium in the East from 148 to 62 BC, focusing on questions of Roman imperialism, the second,Mass Oratory and Political Power in the Late Roman Republic, analysing the effects of public speech and public meetings upon the distribution of political power in Rome. He has also co-edited (with Nathan Rosenstein) the recent Blackwell Companion to the Roman Republic. His current book-project is a study of Julius Caesar and the Roman People, which he describes as "not another biography of Caesar" but an attempt to illuminate the popular character of the Late Roman Republic and shed new light on its crisis.

His main research interests lie in Roman history from the middle Republic to the early Empire, and current work focuses on political culture in the Late Roman Republic, especially political values and concepts and the conflicting sources of legitimacy in a time of crisis. Other major interests include Cicero, Roman rhetoric, Roman imperialism, and Latin and Greek historiography.

Graduate Supervision
He would be happy to hear from prospective students who are interested in pursuing advanced study in any of the above areas.


Blackwell Companion to the Roman Republic (edited, with N.S. Rosenstein). (Blackwell Press, 2006).

Mass Oratory and Political Power in the Late Roman Republic. (Cambridge University Press, 2004).

Hegemony to Empire: The Development of the Roman Imperium in the East, 148-62 B.C. (Berkeley: UC Press, 1995).

Selected Articles

“Persuading the People in the Roman Participatory Context,” in Blackwell Companion to Greek Democracy and the Roman Republic, edited by D. Hammer (Malden, MA and Oxford 2015), 294-310.

“‛Cultural Hegemony’ and the Communicative Power of the Roman Elite,” in C. Steel and H. van der Blom, eds., Community and Communication: Oratory and Politics in Republican Rome (Oxford 2013), 29-47.

"Political Graffiti in the Late Roman Republic: Hidden Transcripts and Common Knowledge," in Politische Kommunikation und öffentliche Meinung in der antiken Welt, ed. by C. Kuhn (Heidelberg 2012).

"Consular Appeals to the Army in 88 and 87: the Locus of Legitimacy in Late-Republican Rome," in Consuls and Res Publica, ed. by H. Beck et al. (Cambridge 2011).

"Dignitas and res publica: Caesar and Republican legitimacy," in Eine politische Kultur (in) der Krise? Die "letzte Generation" der römischen Republik, edited by K.-J. Hölkeskamp (Munich 2009).

"Political History," in the Blackwell Companion to Ancient History, edited by A. Erskine (Malden, MA, 2009).

"Caesar's Alleged Fear of Prosecution and his Ratio Absentis in the Approach to the Civil War", Historia 56 (2007) 159-78.

"The Transformation of the Republic" (with N.S. Rosenstein), in the Blackwell Companion to the Roman Republic (2006).

"The Myth of Numidian Origins in Sallust's African Excursus," American Journal of Philology 122 (2001) 179-200.

"The Alleged 'Massacre' at Cirta and Its Consequences (Sall. BJ 26-27)," Classical Philology 95 (2000) 468-76.

"Publicity, Popularity and Patronage in the Commentariolum Petitionis," Classical Antiquity 17 (1998) 259-88.

"Q. Fabius Maximus and the Dyme Affair (Syll.3 684)," Classical Quarterly 45 (1995) 129-53.