Jessica Blum

Jessica Blum-Sorensen

Assistant Professor

Program Director

(415) 422-4750 KA 377


Jessica Blum-Sorensen earned a PhD from Yale University in 2015, an MA and MPhil in classical philology from Yale in 2012, and a BA in classics from Trinity College Dublin in 2005. Before joining the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures in 2017, she was a visiting assistant professor at Wabash College and a visiting lecturer at UC Irvine.

She specializes in imperial Latin poetry and the epic tradition, and is co-editor of The Epic Journey in Greek and Roman Literature, published in 2019 with Cambridge University Press. Her current book project, Epic Ambition: Hercules and the Politics of Emulation in Valerius Flaccus’ Argonautica, examines the intersection of Roman social discourses and the epic tradition in the tumultuous political world of Flavian Rome.

Program Director, Classical Studies
PhD, Yale University
MA, MPhil, Classical Philology, Yale University
BA, Classics, Trinity College Dublin
Selected Publications

“Storm scenes,” co-author with Thomas Biggs, Epische Bauformen. Ed. Christiane Reitz and Simone Finkmann (De Gruyter. Berlin; forthcoming)

“Juno Audax: Rethinking Genre in the Argonautica,” Unity and Inconsistency in Flavian Epic. Ed. Attila Ferenczi and Andrew Zissos (Pierides Series, Cambridge Scholars Publishing; forthcoming)

The Epic Journey in Greek and Roman Literature. Ed. Thomas Biggs and Jessica Blum (May 2019, Cambridge University Press)

“‘What country, friends, is this?’ Geography and Exemplarity in Valerius Flaccus’ Argonautica,” in Home and Away: the Epic Journey in Greek and Roman Literature. Ed. Thomas Biggs and Jessica Blum (Cambridge University Press, 2019)

“Witch’s Song: morality, name-calling and poetic authority in the Argonautica.” (Classical Journal 113.2 (2017), 173-200)

“Rogue Bulls and Troubled Heroes: heroic value in Valerius Flaccus’ Argonautica,” (Classical Outlook 92.2 (2017), 44-53)