Charles Pletcher, PhD

Research Software Engineer

Lausanne, VD, Switzerland

ancient tragedy, materiality, messenger speeches, reception studies, digital humanities, marxism


2016 - 2023

Columbia University

Classics/Comparative Literature


Dissertation: Props and Power: Objects and economies of knowledge in four plays of Sophocles

September 2012 - June 2013

Dartmouth College

Comparative Literature


January 2010 - May 2012

Brown University

Classics (honors) and Comparative Literature


July 2007 - June 2009

Deep Springs College

Current projects


Select talks

* = invited

Academic Employment

University of Lausanne

September 2023 – present: Research Software Engineer, Institute of Archaeology and Classical Studies

Columbia University

September 2021 - May 2023: Preceptor, Literature Humanities

September 2018 - May 2020: Instructor, Elementary Latin II, Intermediate Latin I, Elementary Greek I & II

September 2017 - May 2018: Teaching assistant, Classical Myth, Intermediate Greek (Plato's Symposium)

Other Employment

Archimedes Digital

September 2018 - July 2021

Senior Software Engineer (contract)

  • Built reading environment for New Alexandria Foundation
  • Built annotation tool for CTS-compliant texts

The Flatiron School

February 2016 - August 2016

Technical Curriculum Lead

  • Led project for algorithmically triaging GitHub issues (using TF-IDF and the Python NLTK) — cut issue response rate in half and eliminated orphaned issues
  • Wrote introductory JavaScript curriculum
  • Oversaw technical development of Flatiron's curricula, including courses on Ruby on Rails, JavaScript, Introductory Computer Science (with Java), and iOS development


June 2014 - December 2016


Assembly created a platform for crowd-building software, enabling community-owned development of new products.
  • Contributed to an automated concierge platform built on Slack (using AWS Lambda)
  • Refactored Assembly's chat platform (
  • Built Assembly's payments platform for distributing project income to contributors (

Kosmix (@WalmartLabs)

September 2009 - April 2014

Relevance Analyst (intern, contract, 2009-2011), Software Engineer (intern, contract, 2011-2013), SWE III (full-time, 2013-2014)

Kosmix built a search engine on top of a unique taxonomy of entities. Walmart acquired Kosmix (which became @WalmartLabs) in 2011.


Telluride Association

June 2011 - June 2019


The Telluride Association is an educational non-profit that runs scholarship programs at Cornell and the University of Michigan focused on building democratic, self-governing communities.
  • ITAC (chair, 2015 - 2018): Maintain the Association's online presence
  • Telluride Association – Deep Springs Liaison (chair, 2014 - 2017): Facilitated communications between the Association and Deep Springs College, and maintain a record of shared institutional history