Johanna Hanink



Greece this, Greece that

Welcome to the website of Johanna Hanink, a writer and classicist at Brown University.

Her work centers on Greece ancient and modern, with a few stops in between; most of it touches on how Greece has shaped ideas about the chimera called Western Civilization.

Here you can find information about her work, not to mention pictures of her adorable doggo, Nova.

Thank you for stopping by!





latest book: The Classical Debt (Harvard/belknap 2017)

“Greek debt” means one thing to the country’s creditors. But for millions who prize culture over capital, it means the symbolic debt we owe Greece for democracy, philosophy, mathematics, and fine art. Johanna Hanink shows that our idealized image of ancient Greece dangerously shapes our view of the modern country and its recent crises.

“Hanink helps us see modern Greece through the eyes of a classicist, and ancient Greece through the eyes of a keen observer of modern Greece—a wonderful and winning combination. The Classical Debt is a clever meditation on if, and why, antiquity still matters.” —Mary Beard, author of the New York Times bestseller SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome

“An immensely well-written and provocative book, Johanna Hanink’s The Classical Debt: Greek Antiquity in an Era of Austerity tightly weaves together the threads of past and present like an ancient Greek warp-weighted loom.” —EuropeNow

The Classical Debt is a valuable book that traces the history of the concept of ancient Greece as the cradle of western civilization, ranging from its origins of this notion to the impact that it has had on contemporary perceptions of Greece… It deserves to be read by anyone who may have once questioned or marveled at the alleged wonder that was Greece.”—Charlotte Van Regenmortel, Economic History Review

“Cleverly connects Western Europe’s investment in ancient Greek origins with the decade-old Greek debt crisis.” —A. E. Stallings, Wall Street Journal
“Hanink’s new book depicts the pernicious intertwining of Classics with Orientalism during the worst of the Greek economic crisis. Antigone’s determination to violate unjust laws suddenly acquires a fresh interpretation in our post-Brexit Europe.” —Yanis Varoufakis
“One of the most striking new books about the legacy of Greco-Roman antiquity.” —Emily Wilson, New Statesman

Hang Out with Johanna