Scholarly Publications



cover1Slavery in the Late Roman World, AD 275-425 (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2011).

My first book, a revision of my dissertation.  Still profoundly grateful for the fact that Michael McCormick, Christopher Jones, Brent Shaw, Noel Lenski, and Peter Garnsey, among others, made it a much better book.  It won two awards, the Breasted from AHA and the Outstanding Book Award from CAMWS.  AMAZON link


cover2From Shame to Sin: The Christian Transformation of Sexual Morality in Late Antiquity (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2013).

My second book.  This book owes a tremendous amount to both Glen Bowersock and Christopher Jones.  AMAZON link. I was also immeasurably grateful for the generous review in the NYRB from Peter Brown, who wrote the best book on ancient sex ever written.


The Fate of Rome: Climate, Disease, and the End of an Empire (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2017).

My current book, expected to appear in Fall of 2017.



“The Greek Census Inscriptions of Late Antiquity,” Journal of Roman Studies 98 (2008) 83-119.

My first publication.  PDF here.


“Lire les mutations de l’Antiquité tardive sous le prisme de l’esclavage,” Dialogues d’histoire ancienne 35.1 (2009) 197-208.


“Slave Prices in Late Antiquity (and in the Very Long Term),” Historia: Zeitschrift für alte Geschichte 59.2 (2010) 206-38.

 PDF here.


“The Senatus Consultum Claudianum in the Codex Theodosianus: Social History and Legal Texts,” Classical Quarterly 60.2 (2010) 610-38.

PDF here.


“Climate Change during and after the Roman Empire: Reconstructing the Past from Scientific and Historical Evidence,” M. McCormick, Ulf Büntgen, M. Cane, E. Cook, K. Harper, P. Huybers, T. Litt, S. W. Manning, P. A. Mayewski, A. M. More, K. Nicolussi, W. Tegel, Journal of Interdisciplinary History 43 (2012) 169-220.


Porneia: The Making of a Christian Sexual Norm,” Journal of Biblical Literature 131 (2012) 365-85.

This paper gets the most attention of any I’ve written on the internet.  People are genuinely curious about what Christianity teaches regarding sexual morality, especially pre-marital sex, and I would like to think that this paper provides some historical context.  In particular, I think its contribution is to define porneia, a crucial term in Christian sexual morality, in a historical context that helps us understand what Jesus and Paul and others meant when they used the term.

PDF here.


“Marriage and Family in Late Antiquity,” in The Oxford Handbook of Late Antiquity, edited S. Johnson (Oxford, 2012) 667-714.


“The Transformation of Roman Slavery: An Economic Myth?,” Antiquité tardive 20 (2012) 165-72.


“The End of Roman Slavery and the Idea of Transition,” in Forme di dipendenza nelle società di transizione: Atti del XXXII Colloquio Internazionale G.I.R.E.A., eds. A Pinzone, E. Caliri, R. Arcuri (Messina, 2012) 393-412.


“Geodatabase of Historical Evidence on Roman and Post-Roman Climate,” M. McCormick, K. Harper, A. More, K. Gibson, in M. McCormick et al. (eds.), Digital Atlas of Roman and Medieval Civilizations, (2012) at


“L’ordine sociale costantiniano: schiavitù, economia e aristocrazia,” in Costantino I: Enciclopedia Costantiniana sulla figura e l’immagine dell’imperatore del cosidetto editto di Milano, 313-2013, vol. 1 (Rome, 2013) 369-386.

PDF here.


“Culture, Nature, and History: The Case of Ancient Sexuality,” Comparative Studies in Society and History 55 (2013) 986-1016.


“The Sentimental Family: A Biohistorical Perspective,” American Historical Review, 119, no. 5 (2014) 1547-1562.


“Civilization, Climate, and Malthus: The Rough Course of Global History,” Journal of Interdisciplinary History 45, no. 4 (2015) 1-18.


“Landed Wealth in the Long Term: Patterns, Possibilities, Evidence,” in Ownership and Exploitation of Land and Natural Resources in the Roman World, eds. P. Erdkamp, K. Verboven and A. Zuiderhoek (Oxford, 2015) 43-61.


“Foreword,” Religious Freedom in America: Constitutional Dimensions and Contemporary Challenges, ed. A. Hertzke (Norman, 2015) xi-xiii.


“A Time to Die: Preliminary Notes on Seasonal Mortality in Late Antique Rome,” in eds. C. Laes, K. Mustakallio, V. Vuolanto, Children and Family in Late Antiquity. Life, Death and Interaction (Leuven, 2015) 15-34.


“Pandemics and Passages to Late Antiquity: Rethinking the Plague of c. 249-70 Described by Cyprian,” Journal of Roman Archaeology 28 (2015) 223-60.


“Reply to John Brooke, on Civilization, Climate, and Malthus,” Journal of Interdisciplinary History 46, no. 4 (2016) 579-84.


“Christianity and the Roots of Human Dignity in Late Antiquity,” in Christianity and Freedom, Volume I: Historical Perspectives, eds. T. Shah, A. Hertzke (Cambridge, 2016) 123-48.


“The Environmental Fall of the Roman Empire,” Daedalus 145 (2) (2016) 101-111.


With W. Scheidel, “Roman Slavery and the Idea of Slave Society,” What Is Slave Society?, ed. N. Lenski and C. Cameron (forthcoming).


Eleutheria: Slavery, Sexual Honor, and Social Death in Classical Antiquity,” in W. Scheidel, J. Bodel, After Slavery and Social Death (Wiley, 2016) 109-21.


“Another Eye-witness to the Plague Described by Cyprian and Notes on the ‘Persecution of Decius,’” Journal of Roman Archaeology 29 (2016) forthcoming.


“People, Plagues, and Prices in the Roman World: The Evidence from Egypt,” Journal of Economic History 76 (2016) 803-39.


“Geodatabase of Prices, Wages, and Rents in Roman Egypt, AD 1-700,” Digital Atlas of Roman and Medieval Civilizations, (2016) at





Review of T. Urbainczyk, Slave Revolts in Antiquity, in New England Classical Journal 36.2 (2009) 127-9.


Review of Y. Rotman, Byzantine Slavery and the Mediterranean World, in Comparative Studies in Society and History, 52.4 (2010) 948-50.


Review of E. Lo Cascio, Crescita e declino: studi di storia dell’economia romana, in Bryn Mawr Classical Review, 2010.04.28.


“Review Article: Knowledge, Ideology, and Skepticism in Ancient Slave Studies,” (review of N. McKeown, The Invention of Ancient Slavery, U. Roth, Thinking Tools: Ancient Slavery Between Evidence and Models, E. Dal Lago and C. Katsari, (eds.), Slave Systems Ancient and Modern, and Page duBois, Slavery: Antiquity and Its Legacy) American Journal of Philology 132.1 (2011) 160-68.

PDF here.


Review of U. Roth, (ed.), By the Sweat of Your Brow: Roman Slavery in its Socio-economic Setting, in Bryn Mawr Classical Review, 2011.04.09.


Review of L. S. Nasrallah, Christian Responses to Roman Art and Architecture: The Second-century Church amid the Spaces of Empire, in Journal of Roman Archaeology 24 (2011) 776-80.


Review of B. Dunning, Specters of Paul: Sexual Difference in Early Christian Thought, in Journal of Late Antiquity 5 (2012) 216-18.


Review of H. Mouritsen, The Roman Freedman, in American Historical Review, 117 (2012) 909-910.


Review of P. R. L. Brown, Through the Eye of a Needle: Wealth, the Fall of Rome, and the Making of Christianity in the West, 350-550 AD, in Bryn Mawr Classical Review, 2013.02.35.


Review of B. Campbell, Rivers and the Power of Ancient Rome, in Journal of Interdisciplinary History 44 (2013) 115-116.


Review of S. Hin, The Demography of Roman Italy, in Journal of Roman Studies, 104 Journal of Roman Studies (2014) 275-6.


Review of P. R. L. Brown, Treasure in Heaven, Journal of Roman Archaeology, 29 (2016) forthcoming.




“Predigtliteratur,” Handwoerterbuch der Antiken Sklaverei, ed. H. Heinen, et al. Lieferung I-III (Stuttgart, 2010) s.v. Predigtliteratur.


“Fessel/Fesselung,” Handwoerterbuch der Antiken Sklaverei, ed. H. Heinen, et al., forthcoming.


“Honestiores and humiliores,” “poor, the,” “slave mode of production,” “slave trade,” “slavery and freedom, Roman and post-Roman,” “social distinctions,” “social mobility,” “tenant,” in The Oxford Dictionary of Late Antiquity, forthcoming.



Leave a Reply