Lindvall Opens Centennial Lecture Series At Lee

Monday, March 19, 2018 - by Sara Groos, Lee University
Dr. Terry Lindvall speaking on film and prayer during his lecture at Lee University
Dr. Terry Lindvall speaking on film and prayer during his lecture at Lee University

Lee University Department of Communication Arts hosted film scholar Dr. Terry Lindvall, who presented on his knowledge of the parallels between film and society’s view of prayer. 

Dr. Lindvall, The C. S. Lewis chair of communication and Christian thought at Virginia Wesleyan College, presented “Hollywood Teaches Us to Pray: A Century of Exemplary and Revelatory Prayers in Hollywood’s Comedy Films.” His lecture was the first of Lee University’s Centennial Lecture Series. 

“Seeing a film isn’t usually a spiritual experience, but Dr. Terry Lindvall’s observation of the number of prayers in film has made us much more aware of the sacred over what tends to be profane,” said Dr. Michael Ray Smith, professor of public relations at Lee. 

Dr. Lindvall showed clips from a compilation of films from the silent era of cinema to present day. Throughout his lecture, he explained his observed parallels between the films and potential takeaways of society concerning prayer.  

“Prayers are frequently answered more directly in films than they are in real life,” said Dr. Lindvall. “Society can anticipate their prayers to be answered more imminently on account of what certain films display.” 

Clips were played from movies such as “Bumping into Broadway,” directed by Hal Roach, “The Kid,” directed by Charlie Chaplin, “Little Annie Rooney,” directed by William Beaudine, “Blazing Saddles,” directed by Mel Brooks, “Home Alone,” directed by Chris Columbus, and “O Brother, Where Are Thou?” directed by Ethan and Joel Coen. 

“Lindvall gave a different perspective on prayer through the lens of Hollywood films over the past century, showing us what we are really praying to: love, money, survival, and happiness,” said Chloe Grabeman, senior public relations student at Lee. “It was a tough truth with a hopeful spin, and he had a very informative and creative approach.”

In addition to his role as professor, Dr. Lindvall writes and speaks on film around the nation. He is the author of six books, including “Celluloid Sermons.” 

An ordained Congregational minister, Dr. Lindvall has taught at Duke University School of Divinity, College of William and Mary, Fuller Seminary, among others. He received his Doctor of Philosophy from University of Southern California. 

The Centennial Lecture Series, sponsored by Lee University Office of Academic Affairs, will take place throughout 2018 as the university celebrates its 100th year. Dr. Mikeal Parsons, of Baylor University, will continue the series on Thursday.  

 

From left, Dr. Matthew Melton, dean of Lee’s College of Arts & Sciences; Dr. Joel Kailing, chair of Lee’s Department of Communication Arts; and Dr. Terry Lindvall
From left, Dr. Matthew Melton, dean of Lee’s College of Arts & Sciences; Dr. Joel Kailing, chair of Lee’s Department of Communication Arts; and Dr. Terry Lindvall


Chattanooga Resident Travels To D.C. To Walk In College Graduation

Local resident Erica Smith has earned her bachelor’s degree in Business Management from WGU Tennessee, and traveled to Washington, D.C., to receive her diploma at the university’s summer commencement. WGU Tennessee is an online, nonprofit university formed through a partnership between the state of Tennessee and nationally recognized Western Governors University as part of Governor ... (click for more)

Cleveland State Foundation Hosts Dinner Reception To Honor Donors

The Cleveland State Community College Foundation hosted a dinner reception on Tuesday night at the Cleveland Country Club. The purpose of the event was to express appreciation to community members who have provided financial support to Cleveland State over the past year, while also giving them opportunity to hear how their support is impacting the success of the College and students. ... (click for more)

1 Killed In Crash On Highway 58 Saturday Afternoon

Highway 58 was shut down Saturday afternoon due to a head-on crash with a fatality near Linda's Produce. There were multiple emergency vehicles on the scene. Highway 58 was closed in both directions. More information will follow. (click for more)

Juvenile Shot On East 14th Street On Friday

A juvenile was shot Friday evening on East 14th Street. The Chattanooga Police Department responded at 6:45 p.m. to a person shot in the 2000 block of East 14th Street. Upon arrival, Officers located a male victim suffering from a gunshot wound to the abdomen. Hamilton County EMS responded to the scene and transported the victim to a local hospital. Members of the Violent ... (click for more)

Arming Teachers With Guns Will Be Too Dangerous - And Response (4)

Arming teachers with guns in the classroom, as Bill Lee proposes, would be the single most dangerous thing to happen to students in Tennessee history. Students and teachers in close proximity to loaded firearms daily? Across this state, in middle schools alone, there are probably hundreds of student/teacher conflicts a day. What if a student got hold of gun in a struggle with ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: On Saving A Soul

Not so long ago a top writer for the Washington Post was going through some of President Ronald Reagan’s papers and, among those his wife Nancy cherished, the Post’s Karen Tumulty happened to come across a deeply-moving letter. Four pages and written by his hand, it was a heartfelt message written by the president to his wife Nancy’s father in August of 1982. President Reagan ... (click for more)