Andiron Lecture Series - Poisoned Candy and Peace on Earth: How History Shapes American Holiday Culture

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Wednesday, September 5, 2018

4:00 p.m.

Room 252, Ridgway University Center, Eykamp Hall, University of Evansville Campus, 1800 Lincoln Ave, Evansville, IN

Rachael McGill earned her MA in Comparative Religion from Western Michigan University in 2017 and BA degrees in Religion and Writing from the University of Evansville in 2015. Her primary research interests examine the ongoing development of Western religious adherents’ understandings of religious themes, symbols, figures, and history in the face of modernity. She is also interested in the complex relationship between religion and popular culture in the United States, particularly in the role, portrayal, and influence of religious elements upon mass media. Among others, her publications include: “The Epic of Exodus: How Moses Movies Became Vessels for Contemporary Religious Dialogue,” Scriptura (2016) and “God’s Getting Married: The Wedding at Cana as a Dramatization of Covenantal Fulfillment,” The Hilltop Review (2015).

This lecture will explore how some momentous events in American and world history from the 19th century onward have shaped our understanding of holiday culture in the United States. Focusing on Halloween and Christmas, McGill will trace the historical development behind key sentiments underlying each holiday.

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