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Ambassador Piotr Wilczek was born on 26 April 1962, in Chorzów, Poland. A prolific literary scholar, intellectual historian, writer, and translator, he graduated in 1986 from the University of Silesia in Katowice, where he also received his Ph.D. (1992) and Habilitation (2001). Recruited by his Alma Mater, he remained there until 2008 as a professor and Faculty Dean. His interests include comparative literature, philology, and intellectual history that form the culture and geography of knowledge across time. In 2006, he received the title of Professor of the Humanities from the President of the Republic of Poland.
In 2008, he joined the University of Warsaw faculty at the new, experimental Artes Liberales program. He became the Founding Director of Collegium Artes Liberales (College of Liberal Arts and Sciences) where he helped establish and chaired Centre for the Study of the Reformation and Intellectual Culture in Early-Modern Europe. Since 2010, he has also been at the helm of the Artes Liberales Doctoral Studies Program. An international scholar active in Europe and the United States, he has been promoting liberal arts education, which breaks the existing barriers between narrow fields of specialization traditionally favored in the continental Europe.
His commitment to interdisciplinary approach to learning draws on his own engagement with international studies, scholarly exchanges, and cultural diplomacy. A recipient of numerous grants and scholarships, he conducted postgraduate research in intellectual history at Oxford’s St Anne’s College in 1988 and completed two postdoctoral projects at the Warburg Institute, University of London, in 1996 and 1998. Twice, he was visiting translator at The British Centre for Literary Translation, University of East Anglia. In the United States from 1998 to 2001, he taught Polish literature and language as a visiting professor at Rice University, the University of Illinois, and the University of Chicago. He was invited to give public lectures at Harvard University and the University of Texas at Austin and conducted research as a visiting scholar at Boston College and Cleveland State University.
Piotr Wilczek is an active member of the Warsaw-based non-partisan American Study Group at the Polish Institute of International Affairs, which brings together experts, journalist, and academics who comment on political and cultural developments in the United States and analyze their implications for Poland, Europe, and the trans-Atlantic alliance. Until his diplomatic appointment in the US, he was Representative in Poland of the New York-based Kosciuszko Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to educational, cultural, and artistic exchange between the United States and Poland. He also served as President of the Foundation’s affiliate in Warsaw.
Piotr Wilczek authored and edited 22 published monographs and more than 100 journal articles which appeared in Poland, the UK, and the United States, both in English and Polish. He belongs to a number of professional groups and associations and is a board member of various international scholarly journals, book series, advisory councils, and academic and educational initiatives in Europe and the United States.
On 21 October 2016 the President of the Republic of Poland nominated him Ambassador to the United States and the Commonwealth of the Bahamas.
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