"The Age of Lincoln"
Dr. Orville Vernon Burton
Thursday October 22, 2009
Free and open to the public
An officer of the Congressional National Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission Foundation, Dr. Orville Vernon Burton is a prolific scholar having produced fifteen authored or edited books and more than one hundred articles. His most recent work, The Age of Lincoln, won the Chicago Tribune Heartland Literary Award for Nonfiction and was selected as book of the month by the Book of the Month Club, the History Book Club, and the Military Book Club.
Professor Burton is the Burroughs Professor of Southern History and Culture at Costal Carolina University and is Executive Director of the College of Charleston’s Program in the Carolina Lowcountry and Atlantic World. Prior to his appointment at Coastal Carolina University he served as the University Distinguished Teacher/Scholar and Professor of History, African American Studies, and Sociology at the University of Illinois. While at the University of Illinois Professor Burton accrued a number of impressive honors and awards. He was named a University Scholar in 1988 and was designated the inaugural University Distinguished Teacher/Scholar in 1999.
Recognized for his teaching, Dr. Burton was selected as the 1999 U.S. Research and Doctoral University Professor of the Year presented by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education. In 2004, he received the American Historical Association’s Eugene Asher Distinguished Teaching Prize. Within the University of Illinois he won teaching awards at the department, school, college, and campus levels. He was the recipient of the 2001-2002 Graduate College Outstanding Mentor Award and received the 2006 Campus Award for Excellence in Public Engagement. He was appointed an Organization of American Historians Distinguished Lecturer for 2004-2009.
Dr. Burton’s research and teaching interests include the Civil War and the American South, as well as the intersection of humanities and social science, especially Humanities and Social Sciences Computing. While at the University of Illinois he served as the founding director of the Institute for Computing in Humanities, Arts, and Social Science. He continues to serve as a Senior Research Scientist and Associate Director of Humanities and Social Sciences at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications. Among his research honors are fellowships and grants from the Rockefeller Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Pew Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, the National Humanities Center, the U.S. Department of Education, and the Carnegie Foundation. He was a Pew National Fellow Carnegie Scholar for 2000-2001.
Professor Burton was born in Royston, Georgia, reared in Ninety Six, South Carolina, graduated from Furman University, and received his Ph.D. in American History from Princeton University in 1976. In addition to The Age of Lincoln, his other scholarly monographs include In My Father's House Are Many Mansions: Family and Community in Edgefield, South Carolina; "A Gentleman and an Officer": A Military and Social History of James B. Griffin's Civil War; and an examination of American filibustering in Cuba: The Free Flag of Cuba: The Lost Novel of Lucy Holcombe Pickens. He and his wife Georganne live in Ninety Six, South Carolina. Please visit his website: www.ageoflincoln.com.
About The J. Roderick Davis Lectures
J. Roderick Davis is a 1958 graduate of Samford University (then Howard College). After graduation, he received advanced degrees in English and theology from Boston, Yale, and Columbia universities, followed by more than two decades of teaching in universities in New Jersey and New York. In 1990, he was chosen by his alma mater to come back as the Dean of Samford’s Howard College of Arts and Sciences. In his eleven years in that office, he helped enlarge the College faculty by thirty percent, created individual departments in Geography, Political Science, Philosophy, and Classics, and directed the streamlining and re-focusing of the university’s nationally-recognized core curriculum.
When Dean Davis retired from his office in 2001, his colleagues decided to honor him by establishing a lecture series in his name that would bring to campus recognized scholars and activists in areas of interest to students in the Arts and Sciences.
Previous Davis Lecturers and topics include:
2008 - Eugene Robinson, Journalist and Commentator for the Washington Post and MSNBC, "Election 2008: The Highest Stakes"
2007 - Walter Isaacson, President and CEO, the Aspen Institute, Author, Einstein: His Life and Universe: "Einstein's Creativity"
2006 – Dr. Juan Hernandez, President, Organization for Hispanic Advancement: “The New American Pioneers: Why Are We Afraid of Mexican Immigrants?”
2005 – Dr. Fawaz A. Gerges, Professor of International Affairs and Middle Eastern Studies at Sarah Lawrence College: “The Far Enemy: How and Why Jihad Went Global”
2004 – Dr. Jean Bethke Elshtain, Professor of Social and Political Ethics at the University of Chicago Divinity School: “Democracy and Human Dignity”
2003 – Dr. Andrew von Eschenbach, Director of the National Cancer Institute: “The Future of Cancer: Progress with a Purpose”
2002 – Susan Eisenhower, President of the Eisenhower Institute: “Leadership in Conflict”
The Wright Center (building no. 6 on this map) is located on Montague Drive on the southern side of Samford University's campus. When entering campus from the main Samford entrance, off of Lakeshore Drive, take a left onto Montague Drive.