Michelle Zerba

Michelle Zerba

Maggie B. Martin Professor
Ph. D., University of California, Berkeley

210-D Allen Hall

Curriculum Vitae


Michelle Zerba is Maggie B. Martin Professor of Rhetoric and Classical Studies and has a split appointment in the Departments of English and World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. She is the Section Head of Classics and Co-Principal of The LSU Mystery Project Collaborative. Her research explores questions at the intersection of antiquity and modernity; Greek and Roman literature, philosophy, and rhetoric; early modern drama and political theory; classical reception/global modernisms; and most recently, the ancient mystery cults. She has held grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, the Partnership University Fund of the French Government, and the American Association of University Women. Her publications include Tragedy and Theory (Princeton), Doubt and Skepticism in Antiquity and the Renaissance (Cambridge), Modern Odysseys: Cavafy, Woolf, Césaire and the Poetics of Indirection (Ohio State University Press), and the Norton Critical Edition of Aristotle’s Poetics. She is currently writing a book entitled "Lightning in the Soul: Mystery, Secrecy, and the Occult in the Afterlives of the Ancient Mystery Cults.

Area(s) of Interest

classical reception and comparative literature; ancient Greek literature, philosophy, rhetoric; early modern literature; history of literary theory