On May 16, 2010, the Board of Directors of the Flannery O’Connor - Andalusia Foundation created a Scholars Council with the following description:
The mission of the Council in its infancy will be to increase the readership of Flannery O’Connor. Members of the Council will fulfill this mission by promoting Andalusia as a literary landmark and tourist site; creating educational resources to post on Andalusia’s website; forming public reading discussion groups within their individual spheres of influence; donating a portion of their speaker honoraria to the Foundation (or making a substantial contribution to Andalusia at some point during the year); and making recommendations to the Foundation’s Executive Director for program-related activities and interpretation at Andalusia.
Are you interested in having your book club discuss works by Flannery O'Connor? Would you like to sponsor a program about O'Connor at your church, school, or civic organization? Perhaps the Scholars Council can help! You can contact several of the scholars by simply clicking on their names in the list below.
Discussion topics for book clubs offered by the Scholars Council
Other teaching resources offered by the Foundation
Activities and upcoming events for the Scholars Council
The inaugural members of the Scholars Council were the four O'Connor scholars serving on the Foundation Board of Directors at the time of the Council's creation.
- Dr. Bruce Gentry (Chair of the Council) - Professor of English at Georgia College in Milledgeville and editor of the Flannery O'Connor Review published by Georgia College; author of Flannery O'Connor's Religion of the Grotesque from the University Press of Mississippi (1986)
- Dr. Sarah Gordon - Professor Emerita of English at Georgia College in Milledgeville and former editor of the Flannery O'Connor Review and The Flannery O'Connor Bulletin; author of Flannery O'Connor: the Obedient Imagination from the University of Georgia Press (2000)
- Dr. William (Bill) Sessions - Regents Professor Emeritus of English at Georgia State University in Atlanta; personal friend of Flannery O'Connor; author of an upcoming biography of Flannery O'Connor, the first authorized biography
- Dr. Ralph C. Wood - Professor of Theology and Literature at Baylor University in Waco, TX; author of Flannery O'Connor and the Christ-Haunted South from William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (2004)
Membership on the Scholars Council is by invitation from the scholars serving on the Foundation Board of Directors. The current additional members of the Scholars Council are as follows:
- Dr. Gary Ciuba - Professor of English at Kent State University; author of Desire Violence & Divinity in Modern Southern Fiction: Katherine Anne Porter, Flannery O'Connor, Cormac McCarthy, Walker Percy from Louisiana State University Press (2007)
- Dr. Robert Donahoo - Professor of English at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX; Past-President of the Flannery O'Connor Society; co-editor of Flannery O'Connor in the Age of Terrorism: Essays on Violence and Grace from the University of Tennessee Press (2010)
- Dr. Avis Hewitt - Professor of English at Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids; President of the Flannery O'Connor Society; co-editor of Flannery O'Connor in the Age of Terrorism: Essays on Violence and Grace from the University of Tennessee Press (2010)
- Dr. Rosemary Magee - Director of the Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library (MARBL) at Emory University in Atlanta; editor of Conversations with Flannery O'Connor from the University Press of Mississippi (1987)
- Dr. John D. Sykes, Jr. - Professor of English at Wingate University in Wingate, NC; author of Flannery O'Connor, Walker Percy, and the Aesthetic of Revelation from the University of Missouri Press (2007)
- Dr. Virginia Wray - Dean of Faculty at Lyon College in Batesville, AR; published numerous articles on O'Connor; served as past president of the Flannery O'Connor Society and past editor of the Cheers newsletter