American-literature critic to present annual Holloway lecture

September 07, 2011

Author, scholar and professor Eric Sundquist will present the annual Holloway Lecture, "We Dreamed A Dream: Ralph Ellison, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Barack Obama," at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 13 in McDaniel Lounge. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Eric Sundquist is Andrew W. Mellon Professor of English at Johns Hopkins University. A leading authority in American literature, he specializes in African-American literature, Jewish-American literature, and the literature of the Holocaust. His books include “King’s Dream” (2009); “Strangers in the Land:  Blacks, Jews, Post-Holocaust America” (2005), winner of the Weinberg Judaic Studies Institute Book Award; “To Wake the Nations:  Race in the Making of American Literature” (1992), winner of the Christian Gauss Award from Phi Beta Kappa and the James Russell Lowell Award from the Modern Language Association; “The Hammers of Creation:  Folk Culture in Modern African American Literature” (1993); “Faulkner:  The House Divided” (1985); and “Home as Found:  Authority and Genealogy in Nineteenth Century American Literature” (1979), recipient of the Gustave Arlt Award from the Council of Graduate Schools in the United States.

He is co-author of “The Cambridge History of American Literature, Volume 2, Prose Writing 1820-1865,” a work described as “difficult to beat for an overview of antebellum prose” by Reviews in American History. He is also the editor of essay collections on authors including Mark Twain, Ralph Ellison, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and W. E. B. Du Bois.

Sundquist received his B.A. from The University of Kansas and his M.A. and Ph.D. from The Johns Hopkins University. Currently on the faculty at Johns Hopkins University, he has previously been a professor at The University of California, Berkeley, Vanderbilt University, UCLA, and Northwestern University. He has had extensive teaching and scholarly positions abroad, serving as Fulbright Senior Specialist in American Studies in Poland, as a Visiting Scholar in Taiwan, as an Academic Specialist in American Studies at Tel Aviv University, and has been a faculty member in such prestigious programs as the UC Irvine Summer Institute on Critical Theory and the Bread Loaf School of English, and has directed several NEH Summer Seminars.

The Holloway Lecture is named for Fred G. Holloway, the College’s fourth president. A graduate of the class of 1919, Holloway went on to earn a divinity degree from Drew University and was ordained by the Methodist Protestant church in 1921. He served charges in Delaware, Virginia and Maryland before he was called to Westminster Theological Seminary in 1927 as professor of Biblical Languages. There, his emergence as one of the church’s most powerful preachers and as a promising young administrator led to the presidency of the Seminary, and, after a short time, to the presidency of the College.