Mercer to Welcome Dr. Patricia Sullivan for 58th Annual Lamar Lectures on Oct. 19-20


MACON – Dr. Patricia Sullivan, professor of history at the University of South Carolina, will deliver three lectures on the theme “What Happened to the Civil Rights Movement” as part of Mercer University's 58th 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, have been rescheduled for Oct. 19-20 in the Medical School Auditorium on the Macon campus. They were originally set for Oct. 5-6, but were postponed due to the recent flooding in South Carolina.

Dr. Sullivan specializes in modern U.S. history, with an emphasis on African American history, race relations and the history of the Civil Rights Movement. Her opening lecture, “Beginnings: A Law-Based Insurgency in the Jim Crow South,” is set for Oct. 19 at 10 a.m., followed by “'This is the Generation': The Peak Years of the Southern Civil Rights Struggle” on Oct. 19 at 6 p.m. The series will conclude with “What Happened to the Civil Rights Movement?” on Oct. 20 at 6 p.m.

“Dr. Sullivan continues in the very best tradition of the Lamar Lectures by offering lectures that zero in on one of the nation's most critical and timely questions,” said lecture series director Dr. Sarah E. Gardner, professor of history and director of Mercer's Center for Southern Studies.

Dr. Sullivan's most recent book, Lift Every Voice: The NAACP and the Making of the Civil Rights Movement, is the first history of the formative decades of the nation's oldest civil rights organization. She has also authored Days of Hope: Race and Democracy in the New Deal, Freedom Writer: Virginia Foster Durr, Letters from the Civil Rights Years, New Directions in Civil Rights Studies (co-edited with Dr. Armstead L. Robinson) and Civil Rights in the United States (a two-volume encyclopedia co-edited with Dr. Waldo E. Martin Jr.). She and Dr. Martin are also editors of the John Hope Franklin Series in African American History and Culture, published by the University of North Carolina Press.

Since 1997, Dr. Sullivan and Dr. Martin have co-directed the National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute at Harvard's W.E.B. Du Bois Institute on “Teaching the History of the Civil Rights Movement.”

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.

Kyle is senior director of media relations at Mercer. In addition to being the primary media contact for most academic and administrative units of the university, he serves as editor of the Mercerian alumni magazine and News@Mercer e-newsletters, and he coordinates hometown and university news releases.