Kathryn Langenfeld


Katie is an advanced Ph.D. candidate at Duke University's Department of Classical Studies. She focuses on the historiography and cultural history of the Roman Empire and the City of Rome across all periods. Her primary research interests include Roman historiography and literary culture of the 3rd-5th centuries CE and the intersection of text, art, and archaeology in the Late Empire.  She is interested in the social mechanisms that facilitate the circulation of texts in Late Antiquity and in the political unrest in the late empire.

She is in the final stages of her dissertation on the Historia Augusta, a series of thirty imperial biographies written in the late fourth century CE.  Her project explores the creative processes and influences that shaped the Historia Augusta's notorious "forged" and inventive elements: its attribution to six fictitious biographers, its invented imperial dedications to Diocletian and Constantine, and its reliance on invented documents. Her dissertation illustrates how these inventions developed within the collection and how these inventions were harnessed for historical and political purposes.

Before matriculating at Duke, Katie received her B.A. in Classical Studies, emphasis Classical Languages, and B.A. in History at University of Missouri-Columbia.