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Dr Graham Wrightson

Ancient Greece

South Dakota State University



Graham Wrightson is Assistant Professor of History at South Dakota State University in Brookings, South Dakota, USA. His research focuses primarily on Macedonian military history with a special focus on military manuals and the sarissa phalanx.

Originally from the UK, he did his undergraduate in Classics at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge and then his MA and PhD in Greek history (with a minor in the Latin of the First Crusade) at the University of Calgary, Canada, graduating in 2012. He is series editor with Geoff Lee of the proceedings of the annual International Ancient Warfare Conference published with Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

His current research is the Sarissa Project involving the reconstruction of 45 full size replica sarissas and the consequent training of a small phalanx in order to assess the abilities of the formation on different terrain and under certain conditions. This involved a grant of $4500 from the SDSU Humanities Research Council for the construction of the sarissas and the use of welding and woodworking facilities. The Project will be completed in the summer of 2019.

Graham has published multiple articles and papers on Macedonian warfare and three books as a co-editor: Greece, Macedon and Persia: Studies in the Social, Political and Military Consequences of Conquest Societies (with T. Howe and E. Garvin, Oxbow, 2015); Ancient Warfare: Introducing Current Research. IAWC Vol. 1. (with G. Lee and H. Whittaker von Hofsten, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2015); and The Many Faces of War in the Ancient World (with W. Heckel and S Mueller, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2015).

International Ancient Warfare Conference Proceedings Vol. 2 (with G. Lee and A. Schofield, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2019) is forthcoming. He just published a textbook for the standard US university first-year survey course Western Civilization 1 entitled Becoming Civilized? A History of the Western World to 1600 (Cognella, 2017). He is currently working on turning his dissertation into his first monograph, set for submission in August 2018, tentatively entitled Combined Arms Warfare in Ancient Greece from Homer to Alexander the Great and his Successors (Routledge).

He is a member of the Association of Ancient Historians and of the Society for Classical Studies. His research interests are Greek history (especially military and Hellenistic), Roman Republican history of the conquest of Greece, military manuals, and conquest societies. His other areas of interest are Byzantium and the Crusades, Medieval Greek history, and British history (especially the War of the Roses).