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Dr Christian Keime

Dr Christian Keime

Research Fellow,

Director of Studies in Classics,

Girton College

Girton College
Cambridge CB3 0JG

Office Phone: 01223 760350 (College) 01223 335158 (Faculty)

Research Interests

Plato (Symposium, Crito, Protagoras, Republic); Homer; Hesiod; ancient epistemology; ancient theories of eros.

Research Supervision

Recent areas supervised include: Ancient Philosophy (Presocratics, Plato, Aristotle, Epicureanism); Greek Literature (Homer, Herodotus, Euripides, Lysias, Xenophon); Greek Language; Latin Language; Ancient and Modern Aesthetics.

Key Publications

  • Keime 2018 : 'The speech of Eryximachus in Plato’s Symposium (185e6-188e4): Problems and philosophical function of a medical praise,' Dialogues d'Histoire ancienne, 2018/2 (44/2): 87-109.

[In the Symposium, Eryximachus portrays erôs as paradoxically deprived of desire and pleasure. What does this portrait owe to the medical tradition the orator claims to draw on? Although the Hippocratic Corpus never fails to recognize that desire and pleasure are essential to the nature of erôs, it provides the grounds for Eryximachus' implausible account: the ideal of health and good mixture (krâsis) on which the doctor bases his praise. With regard to this ideal, neither pleasure nor desire is really praiseworthy. In order to display the virtues of erôs, the doctor must distort its essence.]

  • Keime 2017 : 'L’allégorie de la caverne ou le lecteur au miroir', in C. Hunzinger, G. Mérot, et G. Vassiliadès (eds) Tours et détours de la parole dans la littérature antique, Bordeaux, 2017: 49-61

[In the Republic, the Allegory of the Cave does not only refer to the paideia of the philosopher and to the theory of knowledge propounded by Socrates in Book 6. It is also a critical image of the discussion carried out by Socrates with his companions, and of the written dialogue offered by Plato to his reader. Thanks to this metatext, Socrates' audience and Plato's readers are prompted to consider how to interpret the teaching on justice conveyed by the dialogue.]

  • Keime 2016 : 'Lector in dialogo. Implied reader and interpretive cooperation in Plato’s Symposium', in M. Erler and M. Tulli (eds) Plato’s Symposium, selected papers from the X Symposium Platonicum, Sankt Augustin, Akademia Verlag, 2016: 52-8

[In the Symposium, the various characters represented around Diotima and Socrates (Socrates as a youngster, Agathon, Alcibiades, Aristodemus and Apollodorus) can be viewed as 'implied readers' (W. Iser) whose function is to express a particular view on the philosophical lesson in erôs uttered by Diotima and retold by Socrates. By presenting these different approaches to the philosophical lesson, Plato may engage his reader in an 'interpretive cooperation' (U. Eco) and prompt us to interpret Diotima’s theory of love correctly.]

  • Keime 2015a : 'The Role of Diotima in Plato’s Symposium', in G. Cornelli (ed.), Plato’s Styles and Characters: Between Literature and PhilosophyBeiträge zur Altertumskunde [Contributions to Classical Studies], De Gruyter, Berlin-Boston, 2015: 379-400

[By delivering his theory of erôs through the mouth of Diotima, Socrates provides a lesson in communication that prompts the reader to interpret correctly his theory: (1) he shows that the dialectician must adapt his teaching to his addressees, (2) he brings out the limits of a lesson on erôs delivered in the form of a didactic monologue, and (3) Plato vindicates the necessity of teaching through reported dialogue, whether orally or in writing.]

Upcoming events

Illustrating Ancient History: Bringing the Past to the Present

Nov 03, 2020

Cast Gallery, Museum of Classical Archaeology, Sidgwick Avenue, CB3 9DA

Conservation in Action: the Bassae Frieze

Dec 08, 2020

Cast Gallery, Museum of Classical Archaeology

Upcoming events

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Current Archaeology Award - voting open

Dec 02, 2020

The Faculty's Aldborough Roman Town has been nominated for Current Archaeology Award for Best Research Project of the Year. See link for how to vote.

Australian Academy of Humanities

Nov 25, 2020

The Faculty is delighted to report that Professor Simon Goldhill has been elected as a Corresponding Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities.

Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship Scheme 2021

Nov 20, 2020

The Faculty invites applications from early career researchers to the this fellowship. Internal deadline: 21 December 2020.

Professor Beard's new series, Inside Culture, broadcasts on 24 September

Sep 23, 2020

Professor Mary Beard is starting a new series of her Arts and Culture programme, now called "Inside Culture" on BBC2 (7.30 pm Thursday 24 Sept).

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