2015-16 Speaker Series

Spring 2016 Events


March 22-23, 2016:

The A.V. Elliott Conference on Great Books and Ideas

This year's theme is "1776"

All Conference Events will be held in the University Center's President's Dining Room.  It is free and open to the public

signing of declaration

March 22:

4:00pm      Mercer Student Panel:

                        Featuring Anna Bates, Maggie Callahan, Samuel Moses, Maurilia Oldham

6:00pm      Opening Lecture:     Diana Schaub (Loyola University Maryland)

                        "Lincoln and the Daughters of Dred Scott: A Reflection on the Declaration of Independence"

March 23:

9:00-10:30am     Panel I (1776 and the American Founders)

William B. Allen (Michigan St. University):  "Happiness the End; Consent the Foundation; Character the Means"
Jane Calvert (University of Kentucky):  "Rejected Stones: John Dickinson's Conception of Rights at the American Founding"
Peter McNamara (Utah St. University):  "Hamilton, Revolution, and Political Violence"


10:45-12:15pm     Panel II (1776 and the Scottish Enlightenment)

Thomas Merrill (American University):  "Hume and Contractarianism"
 Adam Potkay (College of William and Mary):  "Hume's 'Of Suicide': Necessity and Native Liberty"
 Dennis Rasmussen (Tufts University):  "An Apology for Adam Smith, Friend of David Hume: The Dialogues Controversy"

David Hume

1:30-3:00pm     Panel III (1776: the Context and Legacy)

James Read (Saint John's University):  "'The Public Mind Shall Rest': Lincoln, Public Opinion, and the Ultimate Extinction of Slavery"
Scott Segrest (The Citadel): "Lawful Return vs. Willful Transformation: Friedrich Von Gentz's Argument for the American, against the French, Revolution"
Brian Steele (University of Alabama-Birmingham)

6:00pm     Closing Lecture:     Gordon Lloyd (Pepperdine University)

                                                                "1776: A Synopsis"




January 20, 2016:

Christopher Blackwell (Furman University) on "Ambition v. Ambition: Classical Democracy, Greek Tragedy, and the Federalist Papers"


February 3, 2016:

David Alvis (Wofford University) on "Michelangelo's David and Republicanism"


Fall 2015 Events


September 14, 2015:

Mercer's Undergraduate Constitution Day Observance:

A Debate on America's Founding Principles

Featuring:   Peter Lawler (Berry College) and Bradley C.S. Watson (St. Vincent College)

This event was made possible through the generous support of the Jack Miller Center for the Teaching of America's Founding Principles and History


October 21, 2015:

The Embattled Idea of Colorblindness: The Complex Legacy of Martin Luther King Jr.

Peter Myers (University of Wisconsin Eau Claire)


November 11, 2015:

Founders' Son:  Abraham Lincoln and the American Founding

Richard Brookhiser