January 24, 2012
Frank Schaeffer, a New York Times bestselling religious author and political commentator, will be speaking at Hampden-Sydney College and Longwood University on Thursday, February 9. Schaeffer is a survivor of both polio and an evangelical/ fundamentalist childhood, an acclaimed writer who overcame severe dyslexia, and a home-schooled and self-taught documentary movie director.
Schaeffer is a much sought after speaker and has spoken at a wide range of venues from Harvard's Kennedy School to the Hammer Museum at UCLA, Princeton University, Riverside Church Cathedral, and Kansas City Public Library. He is a frequent guest on the Rachel Maddow Show on NBC, has appeared on Oprah, been interviewed by Terri Gross on NPR's "Fresh Air" and appeared on the "Today Show" and many other media outlets. He speaks on the impact of far right religion on politics, his journey from being an Evangelical leader (who hung out with the Bush family, Jack Kemp, and other Republican leaders) to being a spokesperson for progressive politics and religion.
At Hampden-Sydney, Schaeffer will talk about his newest book, God, Sex, and Mom: How the Bible's Strange Take on Sex Led to Crazy Politics - and How I Learned to Love Women (and Jesus) Anyway. He will speak in Hampden-Sydney's Johns Auditorium at 11:30 AM and a book signing will follow. Max Blumenthal, author of Republican Gomorrah calls this book, "A penetrating analysis of political extremism, with a moving and at times hilarious account of growing up in one of the Christian right's most influential families. Few writers command Frank Schaeffer's intimate understanding of right-wing radicalism, and even fewer are able to share their insight as entertainingly and with as much moral weight as he has in Sex, Mom, and God."
Schaeffer will speak again at 7:30 PM in Blackwell Hall at Longwood University. His topic will be Crazy for God: Navigating Faith and Politics, taken from his memoir, Crazy for God: How I grew Up as One of the Elect, Helped Found the Religious Right and Lived to Take All (or Almost All) of it Back.
Jane Smiley writing in the Washington Post (7/10/11) says of his memoir "Crazy for God": "[Schaeffer's] memoirs have a way of winning a reader's friendship... Schaeffer is a good memoirist, smart and often laugh-out-loud funny... He seems to have been born irreverent, but his memoirs have a serious purpose, and that is to expose the insanity and the corruption of what has become a powerful and frightening force in American politics... he has been straightforward and entertaining in his campaign to right the political wrongs he regrets committing in the 1970s and '80s... As someone who has made redemption his work, he has, in fact, shown amazing grace."