Maximos the Confessor and Greek Philosophy: The 2022 North American Patristics Society Meeting

This coming Saturday, May 28, 2022, the Pappas Patristic Institute is sponsoring a panel entitled 'Maximos the Confessor and Greek Philosophy' at the annual meeting of the North American Patristics Society (NAPS), exploring the correspondences between the theology of St Maximos the Confessor and the Greek philosophical tradition, especially Neoplatonism.

The Hyatt Regency in Chicago, home to the annual meeting of NAPS, Pappas Patristic
The Hyatt Regency in Chicago, home to the annual meeting of NAPS

The session will feature presentations from

  • Joshua Robinson (Dumbarton Oaks Library):

“Maximus the Confessor on Motion"

  • Jonathan Greig (KU Leuven/Flemish Research Council):

Ambiguum 17, Gregory of Nyssa, and Maximus the Confessor’s Denial of the ‘Bundle Theory’ of Sensibles”.

  • John Whitty, University of Oxford

“Reading the Theologian through the Philosopher? The Neoplatonic Contexts of Maximus’ Account of the Ascent of the Intellect to God in Ambigua 7 & 10”


The session will be moderated by Kelley Spoerl (St Anselm College), a member of the Administrative Board of the Pappas Patristic Institute, and will feature a generous discussion, question, and answer period.


About the Panel


Joshua Robinson is the Byzantine Studies librarian at Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection (Harvard University) in Washington, DC. He has a PhD in medieval studies from the University of Notre Dame and an MTS from Harvard Divinity School. He studies late antique and Byzantine theology and philosophy, especially the influence of Neoplatonism in the Byzantine world.


Jonathan Greig is a senior postdoctoral fellow with the Flemish Research Council (FWO) at KU Leuven, working on the notion of sensible substance and the influence of Neoplatonism and the late antique philosophical commentary tradition in the 4th- to 8th-century AD Byzantine Christian tradition. He was previously a postdoc in the Austrian Academy of Sciences (Institute for Medieval Research) working on the 12th- to 14th-century AD reception of Proclus' metaphysics in Byzantium (esp. in Nicholas of Methone). He completed his PhD in 2014-18 at the LMU Munich under Peter Adamson.


John Whitty is an early-career researcher in Patristics and Late Antique History, specialising in the religious, political and social thought of the third-fifth centuries. He recently completed a DPhil in Theology at the University of Oxford, where he worked primarily on the doctrine of 'Unwritten Tradition' in Basil of Caesarea's On the Holy Spirit, and how this fit into his wider theological epistemology, along with its place in late antique Christian and non-Christian thought.


Kelley Spoerl (moderator) is a member of the Administrative Board of the Pappas Patristic Institute and Professor of Theology at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, NH. She specializes in fourth-century Greek patristic theology, particularly the work of Apollinarius of Laodicea and his influences, including Eusebius of Caesarea, Marcellus of Ancyra, and Eustathius of Antioch. In 2017, she published, with Dr Markus Vinzent, a translation of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea against Marcellus of Ancyra


NAPS 2022


Check out the complete program here, and visit the website of the North American Patristics Society for more information.


Journal of Early Christian Studies, Pappas Patristic Institute
The Journal of Early Christian Studies is the official publication of the North American Patristics Society