The role of knowledge about ancient culture and history in today's modern and complex world is an issue that has been debated endlessly. It is a widespread opinion that less space should be reserved to classical studies in school curricula. Luciano Canfora, a renowned scholar of Classical Greece and Rome, does not share this view. In this book he delivers a passionate and controversial defence of classical thinkers and shows how their legacy continues to be of crucial importance for understanding contemporary society. Many key issues in current affairs - such as the relationship between liberty and dependence, citizenship, the unitary nature of the human species, the role of competence in politics - closely resemble those that challenged and were thrashed out in ancient society, that was able to address them in a sound, hard-headed manner.
Luciano Canfora used to teach Classical Philology at the University of Bari, is the editor-in-chief of the journal "Quaderni di Storia", and writes for the Italian national daily newspaper "Corriere della Sera".