The Enduring Relevance of Thucydides’ Peloponnesian War


The Enduring Relevance of Thucydides’ Peloponnesian War


Video recording of a lecture delivered on April 6, 2022, by Jeffrey R. Macris as part of the LCDR Erik S. Kristensen Lecture Series.

Twenty-four centuries ago the ancient Greek world erupted in a fratricidal war that pitted Athens and its allies versus Sparta and theirs. Exiled by his Athenian peers, the general Thucydides penned a history of the Peloponnesian War that drew upon eyewitness accounts and objective evidence. His quest to seek an objective truth, free from bias or national hyperbole, has earned for him the title of “father of scientific history.” Dr. Macris’ lecture, entitled “The Enduring Relevance of Thucydides’ Peloponnesian War,” explores why students of history, international affairs, and war still debate and find meaning in his work today.

Dr. Macris is the Deputy Director of the Naval Academy’ Stockdale Center. Previously he was a Presidential Visiting Fellow at Yale University as well as a professor in the Naval Academy’s History Department where he earned the 2016 Military Professor of the Year Award. He has published several academic articles as well as two books on the Great Powers of the Middle East.

The lecture is part of a joint lectures series between St. John's College and the U.S. Naval Academy to honor the memory of Lieutenant Commander Erik S. Kristensen. An alumnus of the United States Naval Academy and the St. John's College Graduate Institute, Kristensen, a Navy SEAL, was killed in the line of duty in Afghanistan in 2005. This lecture series aims to create even greater ties between the two schools, as well as to educate the public about civil-military relations and the place of the liberal arts in the education of naval and military professionals.



Annapolis, MD




A signed permission form has been received stating: "I hereby grant St. John’s College permission to make a recording of my lecture, and retain copies for circulation and archival preservation at the St. John’s College Greenfield Library. To make a recording of my lecture available online."


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