John T. Hamilton

  • Harvard University
  • Department of German and Department of Comparative Literature
  • William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of German and Comparative Literature

John Hamilton studied Comparative Literature, German, and Classics in New York, Paris, and Heidelberg. He has held previous teaching positions in Comparative Literature and German at New York University, with visiting professorships in Classics at the University of California-Santa Cruz and at Bristol University’s Institute of Greece, Rome, and the Classical Tradition. Since 1995, he has been actively involved with the Leibniz-Kreis, a working group originally based in Heidelberg devoted to the “Nachleben der Antike.” In 2005-2006 he was resident fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin and in 2011 visiting scholar at Berlin’s Zentrum für Literatur- und Kulturforschung. He is actively involved with the American Academy in Berlin and the Center for Advanced Studies at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich.

Together with Eckart Goebel (NYU) and Paul Fleming (Cornell), he serves as an editor of the “Manhattan Manuscripts” series, published by the Wallstein Verlag in Göttingen. With Almut-Barbara Renger (Berlin) and Jon Solomon (Urbana-Champaign), he edits a series with Brill in Leiden: “Metaforms: Studies in the Reception of Classical Antiquity.” He also serves on the editorial board of German Quarterly.

Teaching and Research topics include 18th- and 19th-century Literature, Classical Philology and Reception History, Music and Literature, Literary Theory and Political Metaphorology. He is the author of Soliciting Darkness: Pindar, Obscurity and the Classical Tradition (2004), Music, Madness, and the Unworking of Language (2008), and Security: Politics, Humanity, and the Philology of Care (2013), in addition to numerous articles: on Lessing, Hölderlin, Hoffmann, Eichendorff, Heine, Kafka, Thomas Mann, and Böll; Pindar, Cicero, and Horace; Balzac, Valéry, Roger Caillois, and Pascal Quignard.