Social & Political Sciences

Social & Political Sciences Experts

Dr William Desmond

Ancient Classics
Maynooth University


William Desmond is originally from Cork but was educated mainly in the US. He has a BA in classics and philosophy, a BSc in mathematics and completed a joint MA and PhD in classics and philosophy at Yale University. He was a lecturer at Yale for two years before returning to Ireland where he lectured in UCD, TCD and Milltown, before taking up a permanent post in Maynooth in 2007. Dr Desmond’s research interests centre on intellectual history, particularly in the Greek classical period and certain modern receptions of antiquity; recurrent themes include virtue ethics, political philosophy, historiography and metaphysics. His doctorate on classical Greek ideas about wealth was published as The Greek Praise of Poverty (Notre Dame UP, 2006), which was awarded the NUI Centennial Prize in Academic Publishing in Languages, Literature & Linguistics (2009). A second monograph,Cynics (Acumen & University of California Press, 2008), examines the “dog philosophers” in antiquity, and their later influence. Philosopher-Kings of Antiquity (Bloomsbury, 2011, pbk. 2013) explores the ideal Platonic union of power and wisdom and its more important variations and historical refractions through antiquity and beyond. His current research remains interdisciplinary as it focuses on nineteenth-century German receptions of both Greek and Roman cultures, especially among Idealist and Romantic writers. Other specialist areas of interest include Homer and mythology, and Whitehead and modern process thought; he has edited (with Michel Weber) the two-volume Handbook of Whiteheadian Process Thought (de Gruyter, 2008).

Research Interest


Global Experts from Ireland

Global Experts in Subject

Share This Profile