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Community Lecture Series: "Does Literature Make Us Better People?"

Presenter: Laura Martin
Reception: 5:30 p.m.
Presentation: 6:00 p.m.


It’s a commonly held belief that reading and writing are good for us, not just academically, but personally. This belief is so strongly held that prestigious universities like Georgetown and Rice incorporate literature into the studies of doctors-in-training for the explicitly stated purpose of teaching them empathy. But is the relationship between literature and compassion a direct correlation, or is it more complicated? In this lecture, Professor Laura Martin will explore the surprising relationship between literature and compassion and discuss how reading and writing can both help and hinder our understanding of others.

Laura Martin is an Assistant Professor of English at Lander University where she teaches a variety of writing classes. She received the Moore Award for Excellence in General Education Teaching in 2021. She has an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Georgia College and a B.A. in Creative Writing and Literature from New York University. Her essays have been published in a variety of venues including Blue Earth Review, Chicken Soup for the Soul, New South, The Smart Set, and SHIFT.


Upcoming Community Lecture Series Events:

March 12 - “Forget What You Know: Mythbusting Memory” with Dr. Shana Southard-Dobbs, associate professor of psychology

April 2 - “A Long Walk to Church: The Camino de Santiago Today” with Dr. Carlos Mentley, professor of Spanish