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Dr Jan Haywood

Profile summary

  • Central Academic Staff
  • Lecturer in Classical Studies
  • Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
  • School of Art His, Class St, Eng&CW, Mus
  • Classical Studies
  • jan.haywood

Professional biography

I began my studies by reading for an undergraduate degree in History and a Master's degree in Classics at the University of Manchester. I then moved to the University of Liverpool, where I completed a PhD on the topic of Herodotean intertextuality under the supervision of Professor Tom Harrison and Professor Graham Oliver. Since then I have held two temporary teaching positions: first, as the J. P. Postgate University Teacher in Classics at the University of Liverpool; and secondly, as a Teaching Fellow in Ancient History at the University of Leicester. I joined the Open University as Lecturer in Classical Studies in January 2017.

Research interests

My research centres on ancient Greek historiography and its contexts, ancient Greek divination, as well as the reception of the Trojan War tradition in antiquity and beyond. At present, I am putting the finishing touches to a revised version of my PhD thesis, Intertext and Allusion in Herodotus' Histories: Authority, Proof, Polemic (Univ. of Liverpool, 2013). The research identifies considerable connections between Herodotus' work and other textual sources (oracles, prose writers, epic poetry, etc.). In unearthing this extensive engagement with a wide range of texts in the Histories, my research challenges current perceptions of Herodotus as an historian reliant predominantly on oral sources.

Alongside this work on Herodotus, I have recently completed a co-authored book with Dr Naoise Mac Sweeney (University of Leicester), entitled Homer's Iliad and the Trojan War: Dialogues on Tradition. Our dialogical study explores the varied responses to Homer's version of the Trojan War in both ancient and modern media, from Attic pottery to the Elizabethan stage to Hollywood cinema. The book thus charts a complex, pluriform engagement with Homer's work, which many have engaged with both for its historical and literary merits.

In addition to these two projects, my current research is centred on the role of religious narratives (and in particular, divination stories) in other areas of Greek historiography. I have recently published an article on the importance of the divine in terms of explaining Xenophon's successful retreat back to Greece from Asia Minor in the Anabasis. I am now looking to build on this work by exploring more fully Xenophon's sophisticated portrait of piety and good or bad leadership in his work. Moreover, I am organising a research workshop with Professor Thomas Harrison (University of St Andrews) that will bring together an interdisciplinary group of scholars in order to explore afresh the role of reilgious narratives in Thucydides' History.



2018: Homer's Iliad and the Trojan War: Dialogues on Tradition (Bloomsbury) :

(Forthcoming): Herodotus and his Sources

Articles, chapters and Reviews:

(Forthcoming): 'Inscriptions as evidence in Xenophon'

(Forthcoming): Entries for the new Wiley Herodotus Encyclopedia (including 'Reception of Herodotus: Ancient Greece and Rome', 'Lade' and 'Icthyophagoi').

(In press): ‘From Croesus to Pausanias: Tragic Individuals in Early Greek Historiography’, in Z. Archibald and J. Haywood (eds.) The Power of Individual and Community in Ancient Athens and Beyond. Essays in Honour of Professor J. K. Davies (The Classical Press of Wales).

2017: ‘Character and motivation in Aeschylus’ Persae’, Syllecta Classica 27: 29-63.

2016: ‘Divine narratives in Xenophon’s Anabasis’, Histos 10: 85-110.

2016: Review of E. Bridges, Imagining Xerxes: Ancient Perspectives on a Persian King, in Journal of Hellenic Studies 136. Read this here.

2016: Review of V. Zali, The shape of Herodotean rhetoric: a study of the speeches in Herodotus' Histories with special attention to books 5-9.  in Journal of Hellenic Studies 136. Read this here.

2014: Review of I. Torrance, Metapoetry in Euripides, in Bryn Mawr Classical Review. Read this online.

2012: Review of A. Hollmann, The Master of Signs: Signs and the Interpretation of Signs in Herodotus' Historiesin Bryn Mawr Classical Review. Read this online.

Teaching interests

I am the author for the classical Greece materials for Exploring the Classical World (A229), the remake of our gateway Level 2 Classical Studies module, which is currently in its first presentation. I am also on the module team for Reading Classical Greek: Language and Literature (A275) and MA Classical Studies part 1 (A863). In the past, I have taught a wide suite of modules that touch on numerous aspects of Classical Studies, notably Greek and Roman history.

I am also serving as Reviews Editor for The Journal of Hellenic Studies, a position that I share with Dr Fiona Hobden (University of Liverpool).


Divine Narratives in Xenophon's Anabasis (2016-08-27)
Haywood, Jan
Histos, 10 (pp. 85-110)
Character and Motivation in Aeschylus' Persae (2016)
Haywood, Jan
Syllecta Classica, 27 (pp. 29-63)
Homer's Iliad and the Trojan War: Dialogues on Tradition (2018)
Haywood, Jan and Mac Sweeney, Naoise
Bloomsbury Studies in Classical Reception
ISBN : 9781350012684 | Publisher : Bloomsbury | Published : London
From Croesus to Pausanias: Tragic Individuals in Early Greek Historiography (2018)
Haywood, Jan
In: Archibald, Z. and Haywood, J. eds. The Power of Individual and Community in Ancient Athens and Beyond. Essays in Honour of John K. Davies
Publisher : Classical Press of Wales (In Press) | Published : Swansea

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