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Dr Alex Long

Senior Lecturer in Classics
Honours advisor, study abroad coordinator, William and Mary representative

Phone: 01334 461607

Room: S13

Research profile

Research Interests

I work on ancient Greek and Roman philosophy and have written two monographs. One is about conversation and thought – especially thought as internal dialogue – in Plato. The other is about death and immortality in philosophy and literature from Homer to Marcus Aurelius. The second book was published for the Cambridge University Press series Key Themes in Ancient Philosophy which was edited at the time by Catherine Rowett and G.R.F.Ferrari. From 2019 I will co-edit the series with Professor Voula Tsouna at the University of California, Santa Barbara. We would be glad to hear from scholars interested in writing a book on Greek and Roman philosophy for the series. I have also translated two Platonic dialogues (with David Sedley) and edited a collection of papers on Plato and Stoicism. I write the Book Notes on Socrates and Plato for the journal Phronesis

I am one of several specialists in ancient philosophy working at St Andrews. See also the profiles of Sarah Broadie, Stephen Halliwell and Barbara Sattler.

Current Research

  • Editing a collection on immortality in ancient philosophy and theology, from the early Pythagoreans to Augustine
  • Ancient conceptions of belief and judgement; criteria for belief-attribution (especially in Parmenides, Plato and the Stoic writer Epictetus)
  • Law and legislation in ancient writing on politics and education
  • Humour and comedy in Plato's dialogues

I am glad to supervise PhD students in ancient philosophy and encourage prospective applicants to make contact. I recommend looking at the profiles of the other scholars in ancient philosophy working in St Andrews (see above) to see the range of expertise here. Postgraduate students currently or recently supervised by me have worked on Plato, Xenophon, political philosophy and Hellenistic philosophy.


For further information on publications, please view my profile on the university's research portal.


In addition to a range of subhonours courses and MLitt teaching, I teach in the following ‘honours’ courses (that is, courses for undergraduates in their third or fourth year).  

Honours courses for Classics students:

  • Greeks on Education (Aristophanes, Plato and Xenophon)
  • Lies, History and Ideology (Euripides’ Ion, Isocrates and Plato)
  • Latin didactic poetry (Lucretius)
  • Latin letters (Seneca)

Honours courses for Philosophy and Classics students:

  • Hellenistic ethics
  • Knowledge and the world in Hellenistic philosophy


I studied Classics at King’s College, Cambridge. After my PhD (supervised by Malcolm Schofield and David Sedley) I worked as a Junior Research Fellow at St Catharine’s College, Cambridge. I moved to St Andrews in 2007, initially as an RCUK Fellow and then as a Lecturer.  

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