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H. L. Mencken (1880–1956) was a reporter, literary critic, editor, author—and a famous American agnostic. From his role in the Scopes Trial to his advocacy of science and reason in public life, Mencken is generally regarded as one of the fiercest critics of Christianity in his day.
Darryl Hart, a historian who has written extensively on Christianity in American life, will deliver the 2017 Mencken Memorial Lecture: “When America Was Great and Baltimore Knew Better.”
This lecture will draw from Hart’s recent biography of Mencken, Damning Words, which presents a provocative, iconoclastic perspective on Mencken's life. Even as Mencken vividly debunked American religious ideals, says Hart, it was Christianity that largely framed his ideas, career, and fame. Mencken's relationship to the Christian faith was at once antagonistic and symbiotic.
Using plenty of Mencken's own words, Damning Words superbly portrays an influential figure in twentieth-century America and, at the same time, casts telling new light on his era.
TIME & DATE
Saturday, September 9, 2017 - 2:00pm