Why Should We Care about the Civil War?


On Thursday, February 3, Dr. Edward Ayers, President of the University of Richmond and a historian of the American South, will speak at Hampden-Sydney College as part of the inaugural year lecture series, marking the inauguration of Dr. Christopher Howard as 24th President of Hampden-Sydney College.  Ayers' topic is "Why Should We Care about the Civil War?"

Ayers has written and edited ten books.  The Promise of the New South: Life after Reconstruction was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize.  In the Presence of Mine Enemies: Civil War in the Heart of America won the Bancroft Prize for distinguished writing in American history and the Beveridge Prize for the best book in English on the history of the Americas since 1492.  A pioneer in digital history, Ayers created The Valley of the Shadow: Two Communities in the American Civil War, a website that has attracted millions of users and won major prizes in the teaching of history.

In July 2007, Ayers assumed the presidency of the University of Richmond.  Previously Dean of Arts and Sciences at the University of Virginia, where he began teaching in 1980, Ayers was named the National Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching in 2003.

Ayers has received a presidential appointment to the National Council on the Humanities, served as a Fulbright professor in the Netherlands, and been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Ayers' presentation will be at 7:30 PM in Crawley Forum.  The community is welcome.