Posted by Philip Poole on 2012-04-06

By Tully Taylor

Christopher Metress, Samford University professor of English and director of Samford's University Fellows program, presented a paper on author Harper Lee at the Society for the Study of Southern Literature conference in Nashville, March 29- April 1.

Metress presented "Harper Lee and the Burden of Southern Liberalism," which addressed the new criticism facing Lee's novel To Kill a Mockingbird that it is not as racially progressive as first thought.

"In my paper, I offered a new reading which suggests that Harper Lee built this criticism of white liberalism and Atticus Finch into the novel itself, and that it's something we should have been noticing all along," Metress said.

Metress joined Samford in 1993.

Tully Taylor is a senior journalism and mass communication major and a news and feature writer in Samford University's office of marketing and communication.

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About Samford University – Samford University is a premier nationally ranked private university deeply rooted in its Christian mission. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th oldest institution of higher education in the United States. U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 4th among regional universities in the South. Samford enrolls 5,619 students from 44 states, the District of Columbia and 29 other countries in its 10 academic units: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy, and public health. Samford also fields 17 NCAA Division I teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference.