Lectures

Gilbert Murray Lectures on Classics and Internationalism

In 2008 the Trust decided to inaugurate a new triennial lecture series in order to bring to public attention the continuing importance of Gilbert Murray’s advocacy of both Internationalism and Classics in the contemporary world. The venue of the lectures will rotate between the three British cities in which Murray conducted most of his life’s work, Oxford, Glasgow, and London. The lectures will always be free of charge and open to the public.


2017
John Kittmer, ‘Greece’s relations with Turkey: New Challenges in an Old Rivalry’.
Classics Centre, Oxford

John Kittmer, formerly British Ambassador to Greece, delivered the fourth Gilbert Murray Trust Triennial Lecture in Classics and Internationalism at the Ioannou Centre Lecture Theatre, Oxford, on Wednesday 15th November 2017. You can listen to a recording of the lecture below.



2014

Prof. Mats Berdal, ‘Power Politics and the Humanitarian Impulse — The United Nations in the post-Cold War Era’.
Hong Kong Theatre, London School of Economics

Mats Berdal explored the revival of what Murray described as the “second experiment” in two parts. First, he provided a critical assessment of the UN’s role in the field of peace and security after the Cold War, with particular focus on the UN’s role in efforts to advance and enforce liberal and solidarist values, including, notably, through the use of force in defence of human rights. He then linked the discussion of the UN’s post-Cold War experience to three themes that run through Gilbert Murray’s writings on international relations: (1) the problem of war; (2) the role and workings of international organisation; and (3) the relationship between democracy and international order.

An abstract and summary of the lecture can be downloaded here (Microsoft Word document).


2011
Prof. Robert Crawford, ‘Simonides and the War on Terror’.
Classics Department, Glasgow University

In his lecture Prof. Crawford argued that to Simonides were attributed some of the world’s most famous epitaphs for people killed in war and that he was a poet connected with civilian atrocity as well as with battlefield casualties. He examined the poet’s work both in the context of the Persian Wars and against the background of remembering the dead in today’s so-called War on Terror. As well as examining responses to Simonides from ancient writers to our own contemporaries, Robert Crawford showed how Simonides’ epitaphs for the dead at Thermopylae have powerful and surprisingly inclusive resonances for twenty-first-century readers.


2008
Oswyn Murray, ‘Momigliano on Peace and Liberty’.
Classics Centre, Oxford

The first lecture was given in Oxford to the centenary of Gilbert Murray’s appointment to the Regius Chair of Greek there. It was delivered by Dr Oswyn Murray (no relation of Gilbert Murray), formerly Fellow and Tutor in Ancient History at Balliol College, Oxford, and a tireless advocate of human rights, intellectual cosmopolitanism and international cooperation. His lecture discussed the example Gilbert Murray had set in supporting refugees, and examined the case of Arnaldo Momigliano, the brilliant Jewish Italian ancient historian who fled fascism to Britain in 1938.

The full text of the lecture can be found here (via Academia.edu).