Southeast Missouri State University
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CHANGING NATURE OF RURAL LIFE IN CAPE COUNTY IN 20TH CENTURY TOPIC OF MARCH 27 LECTURE

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., March 21, 2003 - The Third Annual Friend-Bollinger Regional History Lecture will be delivered by Dr. Joe Dunn of Converse College in Spartanburg, S.C., March 27 on the campus of Southeast Missouri State University.

The lecture will be held at 7:30 p.m. in the University Center Ballroom. The event is free and open to the public.

Dunn, the Charles A. Dana Professor of History and Politics and department chair at Converse College, will be "coming home" to deliver his presentation. Dunn is a graduate of Jackson High School and holds two degrees from Southeast Missouri State University.

The title of Dunn's presentation will be "The Changing Nature of Rural Life in Cape Girardeau County in the 20th Century." Dunn will discuss his perspective on changes in rural life in Cape Girardeau County, especially in the Fruitland and Leemon area in the center of the county. A specific focus of his talk will be the role of education in shaping the lives of local residents.

The talk will be based upon the records of his mother who taught school in the Leemon area for many years and upon the efforts of James Hutchison Kerr to establish an academy and a college in the Jackson and Fruitland area. Kerr went on to become a significant educational leader, mining engineer and historian in Colorado, and is the subject of ongoing research by Dunn.

Dunn has published four books, Teaching the Vietnam War: Resources and Assessments (1990); The Future South: A Historical Perspective for the Twenty-First Century (1991); Desk Warrior: Memoirs of a Combat REMF (1999); and Southern Women at the Millennium: A Historical Perspective on the Twentieth Century (2003). The latter book, co-edited with his wife Jeanette and colleague Melissa Walker, will be released soon by the University of Missouri Press.

He has completed the manuscript of a fifth book, a memoir/history of his mother and the communities in rural southeast Missouri which shaped her life. His sixth book will be on James H. Kerr, who sought to establish the Third District Normal School (now Southeast Missouri State University) in Fruitland.

Dunn has published more than 75 articles and 450 professional book reviews, given 62 conference papers and made nearly 500 community presentations. He has lectured at the U.S. Army War College, U.S. Air Command and Staff College and many Vietnam-related forums. He was formerly a member of the Board of Scholars of the Vietnam Veterans Institute, and has been the subject of interviews in newspapers around the country, including the New York Times, Washington Post, and Los Angeles Times.

In addition to his research and publication record, Dunn is the executive director of the Carolinas Committee on U.S.-Arab Relations and editor of its newsletter. He has been a Joseph J. Malone Faculty Fellow in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain (1990); Israel/Palestine and Egypt (1992); Lebanon and Syria (2001); faculty delegation leader for the Kuwait Studies Program (2000); and participant in the Council on International Educational Exchange International Faculty Development Seminar in Croatia and Bosnia (2002). He has participated in missionary construction projects in the Dominican Republic, Peru, and Ghana. He has raised money to build an orphanage and church, named in his honor, in Ghana. In 2005, he will serve as a visiting professor at the University of Iceland.

Dunn's teaching interests include the Vietnam War, the Civil Rights Movement, recent U.S. political history, American foreign policy, Islamic and Middle East Studies, and Women in Africa and Asia. He received Converse College's Kathryne Amelia Brown Award for Excellence in Teaching and the "Above and Beyond" Award for "exceptional and extraordinary service to students." He is a four-time South Carolina Governor's Distinguished Professor and three-time nominee for the CASE United States Professor of the Year. In 2001, he was cited for "Outstanding Teaching in Political Science" by the American Political Science Association and the Pi Sigma Alpha National Political Science Honor Society.

The Friend-Bollinger Regional History Lecture is made possible by an endowment to the Center for Regional History at Southeast, which was established in 2000 by Nan and Neil Adams of Moro, Ill.

For more information, contact The Friend-Bollinger Center for Regional History at (573) 651-2555.

 

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