Renowned classical scholar Frédérique Woerther joins School of Advanced Study as Visiting Fellow for 2014

Tuesday 29 April 2014

Frédérique Woerther, an international expert in medieval Arabic and classical rhetorical studies, will take up a visiting fellowship at the School of Advanced Study (SAS), University of London.

Currently a researcher and Bronze Medal award holder at the French National Centre for Scientific Research, the country’s largest government-run research organisation, Dr Woerther will be based at the Warburg Institute during June 2014.

Dr Woerther’s research interests have included a study on Aristotle’s Rhetoric and the Greek rhetorical theories in the Classical and Hellenistic period and, since 2005, the Arabic interpretations of Greek rhetoric and philosophy, especially in al-Farabi and Averroes. She is looking forward to her time at SAS, adding:

‘I am so pleased that I will be spending the month of June at the Warburg Institute in London. The Institute offers resources for my research that are simply not available elsewhere and that might fundamentally alter the direction of my research. Further, I am excited about the opportunity to exchange ideas with and receive criticism from some of the best academics in the world who reside and work in Great Britain.’

During the Fellowship she will give a series of public lectures on the latest developments in the history of Greek rhetoric called ‘Reconstructing Hellenistic rhetoric: the example of Apollodorus of Pergamum and Theodorus of Gadara’. They will be held at the universities of Warwick (6 June), Leeds (11 June) and Oxford (13 June). In addition, she will take part in the Warburg’s Work in Progress seminar series with a talk on ‘Averroes' Middle Commentary on the Nicomachean Ethics’ on 25 June.

Dr Woerther is a member of the International Society for the History of Rhetoric and has edited many authoritative publications such as Fragments of Hermagoras (2012) and Fragments of Apollodorus of Pergamon and Theodore of Gadara (2013) for the prestigious series Les Belles Lettres. She has also written commentaries on classical texts, a monograph on the notion of Ethos in Aristotle’s Rhetoric and an edited collection on Literary and Philosophical Rhetoric in the Greek, Roman, Syriac and Arabic Worlds (2009), as well as 35 articles and book chapters. 

Dr Woerther is internationally recognised as an innovative scholar in the fields of East-West research, and Peter Mack, Warburg’s Director and Professor of the History of the Classical Tradition, said her appointment and her talks across the UK would bring credit to SAS.

‘Frédérique Woerther has an outstanding record of publication on the medieval Latin and Arabic reception of Greek rhetoric and ethics’, said Professor Mack. ‘She addresses important research questions on the basis of an exceptional scholarly command of the often fragmentary sources. I am very pleased that she will be a SAS visiting fellow based at the Warburg Institute this June, from where she will be presenting her research at Cambridge, Leeds, Oxford and Warwick. Her visit to SAS offers the UK academic community a wonderful opportunity for the exchange of ideas and the establishment of international research links.’

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Notes for editors:

1. For further information please contact Dee Burn at the School of Advanced Study, University of London at / 020 7862 8670 / 07900 401 240. Images available on request.

2. The School of Advanced Study (SAS) at the University of London is the UK’s national centre for the promotion and support of research in the humanities. The School brings together 10 prestigious research institutes to offer unparalleled academic opportunities, facilities and stimulation across a wide range of subject areas for the benefit of the national and international scholarly community. The member institutes of the School are the Institutes of Advanced Legal Studies, Classical Studies, Commonwealth Studies, English Studies, Historical Research, Latin American Studies, Modern Languages Research, Musical Research, Philosophy, and the Warburg Institute. The School also hosts a cross-disciplinary centre, the Human Rights Consortium, dedicated to the facilitation, promotion and dissemination of academic and policy work on human rights.  

3. The Warburg Institute, incorporated in the University in 1944, is concerned mainly with cultural history, art history and history of ideas, especially in the Renaissance. It aims to promote and conduct research on the interaction of cultures, using verbal and visual materials. It specializes in the influence of ancient Mediterranean traditions on European culture from the Middle Ages to the modern period. Its open–access library has outstanding strengths in Byzantine, Medieval and Renaissance art, Arabic, Medieval and Renaissance philosophy, the history of religion, science and magic, Italian history, the history of the classical tradition, and humanism. In several of these fields it can claim to be the most important library in the world.

4. Each year SAS welcomes around 170 visiting research fellows who benefit from its unique research resources and multidisciplinary scholarly community. In addition to visiting fellowship programmes, the School offers professorial, honorary and senior research fellowships. Through the hosting of these fellowships, SAS fulfils its overall aims of enriching the research infrastructure of its national and international subject communities and other stakeholders.