Thursday, 06 November, 2014
UT's Department of History is pleased to announce the 2014 Charles O. Jackson Memorial Lecture to be delivered by Dr. Molly Worthen of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The lecture is on Thursday, November 6, at 4pm in the Great Room of the International House.
Dr. Worthen's lecture, "Inside the Mind of the Christian Right: A Deep History of the Culture Wars," will explore the longstanding divisions within evangelical Protestantism that led to the late twentieth century's culture wars. Pundits and scholars often describe the Christian Right as a recent and entirely political phenomenon, a narrative of prejudice and polarization that has little to do with theology or the history of ideas. However, the culture wars have a backstory. The Christian Right is the product of a long civil war within evangelical ranks, a battle over intellectual authority with roots that stretch centuries into the past.
Dr. Worthen is Assistant Professor of History at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she researches and teaches on ideas, religion, and politics in twentieth century American history. She is the author of Apostles of Reason: The Crisis of Authority in American Evangelicalism (Oxford University Press, 2013) and The Man on Whom Nothing Was Lost: The Grand Strategy of Charles Hill (Houghton Mifflin, 2006). She has also published in scholarly venues such as Church History, as well as more popular outlets such as the New York Times, Slate, The Daily Beast, and elsewhere.
Each fall, the Charles O. Jackson Memorial Lecture Series brings leading scholars in American cultural history to the UT campus. The event honors the career of the late Charles O. Jackson, a brilliant scholar of American culture and society whose wide-ranging works explored American ideas about death and sexual deviance, food and drug legislation, and the social and military history of Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Professor Jackson was an esteemed member of the Department of History from 1969 to 1997. He was appointed assistant dean of the College of Liberal Arts in 1972 and associate dean in 1979.
Professor Jackson's service in the Office of the Dean greatly contributed to the college's development. He helped create the college's advising services office and led the transition from the quarter to the semester system. He contributed to the development of interdisciplinary programs and the College Scholars Program and worked to implement affirmative action programs.
Those who knew Charles Jackson, the man, saw him as devoted to his family and fiercely loyal to his friends. All recall his acerbic wit and fondness for telling endless bad jokes. To perpetuate Professor Jackson's love of learning and teaching, his wife Emma and his two daughters, Tracy Jackson Smith and Holly Jackson-Sullivan, established the Charles Jackson Memorial Fellowship Endowment. Also, gifts from his family, friends, and colleagues have established the Charles Jackson Memorial Lecture Fund.