MACON – Mercer University will welcome Dr. William L. Andrews, E. Maynard Adams Professor of English at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, for the 57th annual Lamar Lectures, recognized as the most prominent lecture series on Southern literature and history in the United States. The lectures will be delivered Oct. 6-7 in the Medical School Auditorium on the Macon campus.
A leading expert in the fields of African American literature and Southern literature, Dr. Andrews will deliver a series of three lectures on the theme of “Class and African American Slave Narrative, 1865-1901.” His opening lecture, “Pre-Emancipation Testimony,” will take place on Oct. 6 at 10 a.m., followed by “Antebellum versus Postbellum Narrators” on Oct. 6 at 7:30 p.m., and “Heroes and Heroines of the Race” on Oct. 7 at 7:30 p.m. All lectures are free and open to the public.
“Dr. Andrews has dedicated much of his professional career to the study of slave testimony and African American autobiography,” said Dr. Sarah Gardner, professor of history and director of the Southern Studies Program. “These lectures bring to bear his vast knowledge and profound understanding of his subject. We are delighted to bring Dr. Andrews to campus.”
Dr. Andrews is author of The Literary Career of Charles W. Chesnutt and To Tell a Free Story: The First Century of African American Autobiography, 1760-1865. He has edited more than 40 books, including The Norton Anthology of African American Literature, The Oxford Companion to African American Literature and The Literature of the American South: A Norton Anthology. He is general editor of Wisconsin Studies in Autobiography and Casebooks in Criticism.
The Lamar Lecture series, made possible by the bequest of 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.