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Dr Frederic Will


Humanities University

Frederic Will is an American writer and scholar who has taught Comparative Literature and Classics at many universities, from Dartmouth College and the University of Texas in the USA, to the University of Cote d’Ivoire, Mizoram University in Aizawl, India, and Hunan Normal University, China. He now divides his time between Iowa, USA, and Ughelli, Delta State, Nigeria.

Frederic is currently completing a 10-volume sequence of his writings from the past 10 years with Cambridge Scholars Publishing. The sequence is called Inside Selfhood and History, by which he means ‘in the place where what we are becomes something worthy because of the setting given us.’ In these books he takes every chance to stress the centrality of the Greco-Roman to understanding what we are and what we can do.

He lived in Greece for several years during the 1960s, and while he was there he translated two epics of modern Greek poetry by Kostes Palamas, and throughout his academic life he has written extensively on both the poetic and the philosophic in classical Greece. In books such as Hereditas: Seven Essays on the Modern Experience of the Classical, Herondas, Archilochus and the more recent Platonism for the Iron Age, he has made the classical the working ground for his thought and sharing.

During the early '60s he was the co-founder (with William Arrowsmith) of the influential classical journal Arion, which did its best to infuse contemporary criticism and literary bravado into the working field of classical scholarship. The crisp and feisty tone of that journal, which soon incorporated the editorial enrichment of two distinguished British classicists - John Sullivan and Donald Carne-Ross - still strikes Frederic as his liveliest public interaction with the indomitable spirit of classical Greece.