Professor Melissa Lane

Professor Melissa Lane

  • Professor of Rhetoric (2023 - )

Melissa Lane is the Class of 1943 Professor of Politics, Princeton University and is also Associated Faculty in the Department of Classics and Department of Philosophy there, as well as the Director of Princeton's University Center for Human Values. Previously she was Senior University Lecturer at Cambridge University in the Faculty of History and Fellow of King’s College, Cambridge.

She studied for her first degree in Social Studies at Harvard University, and then took an MPhil and PhD in Philosophy at the University of Cambridge, where she was a student at King’s College, supported by appointments as a Marshall Scholar, Truman Scholar, and Mary Isabel Sibley Fellow of Phi Beta Kappa. Having previously held visiting appointments at Harvard, Oxford, and Stanford, she will be Isaiah Berlin Visiting Professor in the History of Ideas in the Faculties of Philosophy and History at Oxford University, and a Visiting Fellow of Corpus Christi College, Oxford, in Michaelmas Term 2024.

She is an author, lecturer and broadcaster who has received major awards including a Guggenheim Fellowship and Lucy Shoe Meritt Residency in Classical Studies at the American Academy of Rome. She has published widely in journals and authored or introduced nine major books including Greek and Roman Political Ideas; Eco-Republic; and Of Rule and Office: Plato’s Ideas of the Political.

Image © Princeton University, Sameer A. Khan/Fotobuddy.
Past Professors of Rhetoric

Caleb Willis (1596/7)
Richard Ball (1598)
Charles Croke (1613/14)
Henry Croke (1619)
Edward Wilkinson (1627)
John Goodridge (1638)
Richard Hunt (1654)
William Croune FRS (1659)
Henry Jenkes (1670)
John King (1676)
Charles Gresham (1686)
Edward Martyn (1696)
John Ward (1720)
Jospeh Whateley (1759)
Joseph Thomas Waugh (1797)
F Newnham (1808)
Edward Owen (1817)
Thomas Francis Dallin (1875)
Charlton Lane (1863)
J M Rae (1988)
Sir Andrew Derbyshire (1990)
Peter G Moore (1992)
J E Nixon (1881)
Foster Watson (1915)
Oliver Elton (1929)
George Stuart Gordon (1930)
Arthur William Reed (1933)
Rowland Walter Jepson (1946)
Lord David Cecil (1947)
Nevill Coghill (1948)
William Empson (1953)
Richard Hughes (1954)
Bonamy Dobrée (1957)
Stephen Spender (1961)
John Wain (1963)
Cecil Day-Lewis (1963)
Patric Dickinson (1965)
Sir Robert Birley (1968)
John Morley Pick (1985 and 1987)
Jan Kott (1986)
Peter Hennessy (1994)
Lynette Hunter (1997)
Richard Sorabji (2000)
Kathleen Burk (2003)
Rodney Barker (2006)
Sir Richard Evans (2009)
Belinda Jack (2013)
Jonathan Bate (2017)
Joanna Bourke (2019)

Find out more about our Professors in Our History section.