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Provost Lecture Series: Literature prof shares importance of Puritan minister

Dr. Clark Maddux will present the next session of the Provost Lecture Series on Sept. 22. Photo by Beth Liggett, University photographer.The Provost Lecture Series at Austin Peay State University will feature a presentation next week about the significance of a 17th century Puritan minister who left behind his thoughts, opinions and interpretations of the Bible.

Dr. Clark Maddux, associate professor of early American literature, will present “Why Cotton Mather Matters” from 3-4:30 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 22 in the Morgan University Center, Room 303. All presentations in the Provost Lecture Series are free and open to the public.

After serving 12 years in the U.S. Army, Maddux went on to earn both his master’s in English and his Ph.D. in American studies from Purdue University.  His work on Cotton Mather’s “Biblia Americana,” a multivolume synoptic commentary on Christian scripture, has garnered him numerous awards and fellowships. He was awarded a summer stipend from the National Endowment for the Humanities and has been a Mayers Fellow at the Huntington Library in San Marino, Calif., a Donald C. Gallup Fellow at the Beinecke Library at Yale University and a Fellow at the Herzog August Bibliothek in Wolfenbüttel, Germany. 

Maddux has published numerous articles and book chapters, most recently on the subject of Mather’s attempt to explain pagan parallels to Hebrew scripture. His volume of the “Biblia Americana,” which will contain Mather’s annotations on Ezra through the Psalms, will be published in January 2013.

Other sessions in the Provost Lecture Series also are planned for the academic year. All sessions are from 3-4:30 p.m. in the MUC, Room 303 (unless noted otherwise) and include the following:

Sept. 29: Dr. Rebecca Jones, associate professor of chemistry

Oct. 6: Dr. Dwayne Estes, associate professor of biology

Oct. 13: Dr. Korre Foster, assistant professor of music

Oct. 20: Susan Bryant, professor of art

Oct. 27: Angelina Fowler, Center of Excellence for Field Biology

Nov. 3: Dr. Dan Frederick, professor of geology and geography

Nov. 10: Dr. Kathrine Flower, assistant professor of sociology

Nov. 17: Darren Michael, associate professor of theater and dance

Dec. 1: Dr. Tim Leszczak, assistant professor of health and human performance

Jan. 12: Dr. Ellen Smyth, instructor of mathematics

Jan. 19: Dr. Ann Silverberg, professor of music

Jan. 26: Dr. Marsha Lyle-Gonga, assistant professor of political science

Feb. 2: Dr. Rebecca Johansen, assistant professor of biology

Feb. 9: Dr. Sergei Markov, associate professor of biology

Feb. 16: Cynthia Marsh, professor of art

Feb. 23: Dr. Christine Mathenge, associate professor of geology

March 1: Dr. Robert Shelton, associate professor of chemistry

March 15, MUC 307: Dr. Allyn Smith, associate professor of physics

March 22: Dr. Sharon Mabry, professor of music

March 29: Dr. Cameron Sutt, assistant professor of history

April 5: Mark DeYoung, assistant professor of art

April 12: Dr. Tim Winters, professor of English

April 19, MUC 103: Dr. Jeffrey Wood, professor of music

The Provost Lecture Series seeks to foster a spirit of intellectual and scholarly inquiry among faculty, staff and students. The program will be used as a platform for APSU faculty members who are recent recipients of provost summer grants, who have been awarded faculty development leaves and who have engaged in recent scholarly inquiry during sabbatical leaves.

APSU faculty members with recent research of acclaim also will be given a platform within this series. In addition, other faculty members of local or widespread renown will be invited to lecture within this series.

For more information about the Provost Lecture Series, call Dr. Brian Johnson, assistant vice president of academic affairs at APSU, at (931) 221-7992 or email him at johnsonb@apsu.edu. -- Melony Shemberger