To those of you who perceive
Lipscomb as a conservative Christian university ... well, not so fast, there, pigeon-holers. Yes, it’s affiliated with Churches of Christ — but the administration may be more open-minded than you give them credit for, as the Landiss Lecture Series makes clear. Case in point: the latest installment, featuring Lee Smith and Hal Crowther. Smith, of course, is an immensely talented author whose perceptive and sometimes dark novels and short stories about life in the South have won a slew of major awards. But it’s Crowther who might raise brows. A former staff writer for Time and media critic for Newsweek, he’s a terrific journalist and essayist who makes no bones about where he stands on the cultural divide: In a searing takedown of the Tea Party in Raleigh-Durham, N.C., alt-weekly The Independent Weekly last year, he wrote, “The Hard Right is wisdom-proof and lethally repetitious.” And in a piece titled “The Worst of the South,” published in 2007 in The Oxford American, he wrote, “When the South is safe for Darwin, maybe that’s when we can begin to boast.” Take notice: This isn’t your father’s Lipscomb University. Free and open to the public.