Dr Christos Kremmydas | Reader in Greek History
"My Why is.... looking into the Classical past in order to understand the present."
I have always found it exciting that we can look to the Classical past in order to understand the present: theatre, politics, democracy, logic, the art and practice of public speaking, all trace their origins to Classical Greece and give us profound insights into the 21st century societies we live in. For my current research project I have been examining strategies of rhetorical deception in speeches from the law courts of Classical Athens. Speakers often caution against the deception that their opponents are going to engage in, but occasionally it becomes clear that it is the speakers themselves who are trying to pull a fast one. So, what I am trying to identify is how speakers manipulated stories, facts, and logical arguments in order to win their cases.
As my research feeds into my teaching, I believe that it helps students become more critical listeners, more aware of the art of rhetoric, more able to formulate persuasive arguments. My hope is that they will also become more critical, responsible, engaged democratic citizens. My why is to better understand the classical past in order to inform the present and inspire the future.