Mercer to Welcome Boston University English Professor Dr. John T. Matthews for 59th Annual Lamar Lectures


MACON – Dr. John T. Matthews, professor of English at Boston University, will deliver three lectures on the theme “Hidden in Plain Sight: The Problem of the South in the American Literary Imagination” as part of Mercer University's 59th annual Lamar Lectures, the most prominent lecture series on Southern history and culture in the U.S.

The lectures, presented by Mercer's Center for Southern Studies, will take place Oct. 3-4 in the Presidents Dining Room inside the University Center on the Macon campus.

Dr. Matthews studies southern literature, with a specialization in modernism and William Faulkner. His opening lecture, “Purloined Letters: Poe, Pym, and the Plantation World,” is set for Oct. 3 at 10 a.m., followed by “Unreckonable Riches: Hawthorne, Salem, and The House of Seven Gables” on Oct. 3 at 6 p.m. The series will conclude with “Modern Equivocations: Imagining the Plantation after the Plantation” on Oct. 4 at 6 p.m.

“Professor Matthews is among the most thoughtful and engaged scholars of literary modernism,” said lecture series director Dr. Sarah E. Gardner, professor of history and director of Mercer's Center for Southern Studies. “We are fortunate to have him on campus.”

Dr. Matthews is the author of The Play of Faulkner's Language; The Sound and the Fury: Faulkner and the Lost Cause; and William Faulkner: Seeing Through the South. He is the editor of The Blackwell Companion to the Modern American Novel, 1900-1950; William Faulkner in Context; and The New Cambridge Companion to William Faulkner.

The Lamar Lecture series, made possible through a bequest from the late Eugenia Dorothy Blount Lamar, began in 1957. The series promotes the permanent preservation of Southern culture, history and literature. Speakers have included nationally and internationally known scholars, such as Cleanth Brooks, James C. Cobb, Trudier Harris, Fred Hobson, Eugene Genovese and Eric Sundquist. The University of Georgia Press publishes the lectures each year.