Wilfred M. McClay is the SunTrust Bank Chair of Excellence in Humanities and Professor of History at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and a member of the Board of Advisors for the Center on Culture and Civil Society at the Independent Institute. He received his Ph.D. in history from Johns Hopkins University.
Professor McClay has also taught at Georgetown University, Tulane University, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Dallas, and is currently a Senior Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C., a Senior Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, DC, and a member of the Society of Scholars at the James Madison Program of Princeton University. He was appointed in 2002 to the National Council on the Humanities, the advisory board for the National Endowment for the Humanities.
His book, The Masterless: Self and Society in Modern America, won the 1995 Merle Curti Award of the Organization of American Historians for the best book in American intellectual history published in the years 1993 and 1994. Among his other books are The Students Guide to U.S. History, and Religion Returns to the Public Square: Faith and Policy in America. He is currently at work on a biographical study of the American sociologist David Riesman under contract to Farrar, Straus & Giroux, and is editing two books of essays, Figures in the Carpet: Finding the Human Person in the American Past, which features sixteen essays by American historians on changing American understandings of self and person, and a book of his own essays entitled Pieces of a Dream: Historical and Critical Essays.
Among his awards, Professor McClay was selected for inclusion on the 1997-98 Templeton Honor Rolls, has been the recipient of fellowship awards from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Academy of Education, Howard Foundation, Earhart Foundation, and Danforth Foundation. He is coeditor of Rowman and Littlefields book series, American Intellectual Culture, serves on the editorial boards of First Things, The Wilson Quarterly, Society, Touchstone, Historically Speaking, and University Bookman, and is a member of the Board of Governors of The Historical Society.