Laugh your way through the evening with Dr. James M. Gifford’s humorous stories of Appalachian culture when Lees-McRae College’s Stephenson Lecture Series on Appalachia begins July 11 at 7 p.m. with his lecture titled “Appalachian Humor, Appalachian Values”.
Dr. Gifford’s entertaining and educational lecture is the first of three Wednesday evening programs sponsored by Lees-McRae’s John B. Stephenson Center for Appalachian and Comparative Highlands Studies.
Join author Gurney Norman July 18 for “Dummling Journeys from Russia to Beech Mountain, North Carolina, and Finds Himself”. Norman’s discussion of his short story, “Three Feathers”, a Russian folktale retold as an Appalachian Jack tale, is sure to delight audiences as he presents his light-hearted story in a playful way with Appalachian vernacular speech.
On July 25, take a peek into the past with Dr. Steven Wallace, paleontologist and director of the Don Sundquist Center of Excellence in Paleontology at East Tennessee State University’s fossil site at Gray, TN.
Find out what the southern Appalachians looked like 4.5 million years ago as Dr. Wallace educates the audience on fossils found at the site near Johnson City, TN. Spectacular discoveries at the site include ancient fish and frogs, a saber-toothed cat and even a red panda.
Named in honor of Dr. John B. Stephenson, noted Appalachian and Scottish Highlands scholar, the Stephenson Lecture Series on Appalachia features scholars and authors who contribute to the advancement of the discipline of Appalachian studies and the region itself.
Part of the humanities division of the college, The John B. Stephenson Center for Appalachian and Comparative Highland Studies was founded in 2001 to further the understanding of Appalachia and Highland regions worldwide and directs the Appalachian studies minor.