Schreiner University Presents the Chautauqua Speaker Series

Chautauqua Speaker Series

Dr. Tim Summerlin – “Wendell Berry’s Compassionate Community”

Dr. Tim Summerlin

Dr. Tim Summerlin President Emeritus Schreiner University

Kerrville, TX – Schreiner University’s Chautauqua Speaker Series, sponsored by the Center for Teaching and Learning, will take place on Tuesday, Feb 4, at 4:00 p.m. in the Scarle-Phillips room inside Schreiner University’s Logan Library. Dr. Tim Summerlin will present, “Wendell Berry’s Compassionate Community.”Chautauqua lectures are free and open to the public. Free parking is also provided.

Kentucky poet and farmer Wendell Berry has firm convictions about the relationship among humanity, nature and civil society. At heart is his belief that mankind’s best traits are nurtured in a community that respects both land and its inhabitants. His views are often antithetical to our notions of a disposable culture and our commercial spirit. Although Berry’s agrarian values are not easy to reconcile to a technological age, they certainly have something to say worth hearing. Our world is divided and at odds in many ways. The images that bombard us are angry and violent. They encourage us to relate to one another in the frequently inadequate terms of age, race, ethnicity and identity politics. Berry’s poetry and fiction draw on a deeper, organic sense of human nature and the natural world. His witness deserves to be heard in any conversation about our common humanity.

Summerlin received his BA in English from Abilene Christian College, followed by degrees from Yale University including his MPh in English in 1971 and his PhD in English in 1973. For two decades, he served as a faculty member teaching courses in English composition, literary surveys, and upper level/graduate coursework in American literature, literary criticism and the Bible as literature. In addition, he has numerous publications including book chapters and critical reviews, articles and professional papers. After a quarter of a century in public higher education, he made a conscious decision to move to the independent college world, the world of his undergraduate education. He became President of Schreiner University in 2001 where he served in that position through 2016, is President Emeritus and still an active participant in current Schreiner activities.

“Chautauqua” was a cultural and social movement that started in upstate New York in the 1870s and flourished until the 1920s. During this time, hundreds of touring chautauquas presented lectures, dance, drama and other forms of “cultural enrichment.” Schreiner University continues the tradition through faculty-led lectures on topics of interest.

For more information on Schreiner University’s Chautauqua Speaker Series, contact Dr. Karen Sides at or 830-955-5701.

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