My scholarly work mostly concerns the role of law in the cultivation of virtue:  how can law produce an authentically virtuous person, given its primitive tools of coercion and habituation?   I’ve written on these topics in Plato and in Aristotle, and have been more recently focused on how these questions connect the Nicomachean Ethics and the Politics.  

In addition to the published papers below, I have three draft-essays in progress. Two continue the unified interpretation of Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics and Politics outlined in my paper on law and moral education (below): one offering a new interpretation of eudaimonia in Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics, and another describing the forms of defective (but worthy) virtue cultivated by the imperfect regimes in Aristotle’s Politics

Lately I have been absorbed by trying to understand what Augustine means by curiositas. I think he means to describe a love of spectacles, the desire to perceive and to experience for its own sake. Such a love differs crucially from an authentic love of learning. For a taste of the views I’m developing, see the section on Augustine’s Confessions in Lost In Thought.


Aristotle on Law and Moral Education

Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy vol XLII (Summer, 2012) 263-306

Plato on the Sovereignty of Law

A Companion to Greek and Roman Political Thought, edited Ryan Balot. Oxford: Blackwell, 2009.

Degenerate Regimes in Plato’s Republic

The Cambridge Critical Guide to Plato’s Republic, edited Mark McPherran. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010.

Aristotle on Self-Knowledge and Friendship

Philosopher’s Imprint, vol 11 no 12 (August, 2011) 1-28.


Review of Julia Annas, Virtue and Law in Plato and Beyond. Polis 36 (2019) 580-574.

Review of Aristotle’s Politics:  A Critical Guide, edd. Thornton Lockwood and Thanassis Samaras.  Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 8 (August, 2016).

Review of Plato’s Laws:  A Critical Guide, ed. Christoper Bobonich. Ancient Philosophy vol 32, issue 2 (Fall, 2012) 441-446

Review of Kurt Raaflaub, The Discovery of Freedom in Ancient GreeceJournal of Philosophy CII (November 2005) 594-601.