Lubbock Christian University
desk with cup and notebooks, one labeled Christianity and Literature

Department of Humanities

What is Humanities?

  • The term “Humanities” arose about 600 years ago in Italy when a group of Renaissance philosophers went back to ancient texts written in Latin and Greek because they believed these texts were more centered around humans.
  • The “humanists” dedicated themselves to studying what it means to be human. 
  • Although in contemporary society the term “humanism” has been shifted to have a more secular meaning, the original humanists approached this study from a Christian perspective, believing that humans are the greatest creation of God, but focusing on man as an imperfect, creative being who is a product of history.
  • Today, what we call “the humanities” concentrates on a very broad range of interests, looking at many different cultures, periods in history, and areas of study, including history, philosophy, languages, linguistics, literature, archaeology, law, history and criticism of the arts, ethics, and comparative literature. 
  • In our Humanities Department, we teach the humanities from a Christian perspective, focusing on people as God’s creation and our history, society, culture, and literature and works deserving of study.

At LCU, the Department of Humanities offers classes in English, Geography, Government, History, and Humanities with several bachelor’s degrees and minors to offer students the most well-rounded and thorough undergraduate education.

The Department of Humanities includes majors in English, History, Humanities, and Museum and Heritage Studies, as well as Minors in Creative Writing, English, History, Humanities, Film Studies, and Law and Government. The disciplines of reading, research, and writing prepare students for graduate work and for many different career areas that focus on both oral and written communication and critical thinking skills.

Mission Statement

To Encourage Thoughtful Reflection

Whether studying social structures and political dynamics, exploring the history of peoples and cultures, interpreting literature from the classical age to the present day, or writing well-researched and creative essays, our students are encouraged to reflect thoughtfully upon life's most important issues.

To Foster Learning and Growth

The search for knowledge and pursuit of wisdom are both intellectual and spiritual, for the learning process is a growing process. Moreover, as we study the social, political, and literary developments throughout human history, we often consider the nature and the traditions of religious expression, opening ourselves to questions that challenge our minds and engage our hearts.

students working on captions at the annual writing carnival

Chap Book 2020

Click here to view the most recent edition of the Chap Book - LCU's student literary and arts journal.

Profile Photo of Ronna Privett

Dr. Ronna Privett is a Professor of English and current Chair of the Humanities Department. She graduated from Lubbock Christian University in 1983 with a degree in Art and secondary teaching certification in Art and English. She continued her education at Texas Tech University where she earned both a master's and Ph.D. in English focusing on 19th and early 20th century American literature with secondary specialization in Victorian literature and comparative literature. She and her husband Bryan (LCU class of ’83, Math) have two children and five grandchildren who all live in Lubbock. Dr. Privett has had the joy of teaching English and Humanities at LCU since 1999.

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Profile Photo of Matt Byars

Dr. Matt Byars graduated from Lubbock Christian University in 2000 with a BA in Humanities with an emphasis in History. Wanting to be a history professor, he received his master’s in Medieval and Renaissance Drama from Texas Tech in 2003. Not too long after that, he applied to Georgia State University for his Creative Writing PhD. More recently, he has been with LCU Humanities Department for sixteen years. His wife, Heather, teaches Speech and Debate at Frenship High School. They have four children: Liam, Audrey, Sadie, and Henry. They all want to come to LCU! They attend South Plains Church of Christ. He and his wife embarked on a trip to Israel this past summer with Dr. Long. Dr. Byars enjoys writing, woodworking/wood turning, editing the Chap Book, and playing tennis.

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Tim Byars is an Associate Professor of Government at Lubbock Christian University. He attended LCU for his undergraduate degree in History. From there, he continued to law school and graduate school for History, Political Science, and Geography at Texas Tech. While he was initially unsure of what profession he would go into, he had the opportunity to teach some classes at LCU. He has been here for 25 years. He has 3 children: Laura, 20 years old, Jacob, 17 years old, and Mary, 13 years old. He enjoys playing the guitar, reading, watching baseball, and playing tennis.

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Dr. Carole Carroll is an associate professor of English and Latin. Having lived in Lubbock most of her life, she has received three degrees— undergraduate, masters, and PhD— from Texas Tech University. She met her husband, Brent, at Sunset Church of Christ and they have been married for 40 years. They currently attend Vandelia Church of Christ, and they have seven daughters. In 2006, Dr. Carroll finished her PhD and was hired at Lubbock Christian University as an adjunct professor. As of this year, she has been with the Humanities Department for 23 years. She loves her job and feels blessed to be teaching at LCU! She and her family love to go camping every summer to Texas state parks and Colorado with their two Blue Heeler puppies, Blue Bell and Cowgirl. She enjoys traveling, renaissance festivals, and reading. Her favorite books are Beowulf and the Jason Bourne series. She recently went with LCU to teach abroad in Spain and plans to go back in 2025!

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Profile Photo of Kregg Fehr

Dr. Kregg Fehr is a Professor of History at Lubbock Christian University. He is from Wichita Falls, Texas. Dr. Fehr received his BS in Geology/Paleontology and an MA in History from Midwestern State University. He then went on to obtain a PhD in History of Science. With his Paleontology degree, his plans were to work in a museum. Instead, he started teaching at MSU. From there, he taught at Texas Tech, Wayland Baptist, and eventually made his way to LCU in 1997 and has lived in Lubbock since 1993. His wife, Jane, and his two daughters, Katie and Gracie, love to travel. He has been to 31 national parks. He frequently takes trips with his students—he has taken his Haunted History class to San Antonio, planning on taking his History of Science Class to London, and many more. Dr. Fehr believes that site-based learning offers benefits that classroom learning does not and is therefore including more traveling in his courses. His primary research interests are Atomics and the Cold War, energy history, and the cultural history of the United States.

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Profile Photo of Kenneth Hawley

Dr. Hawley has spent much of his academic time with medieval and renaissance literature, especially the epic poem Beowulf, vernacular translations of the Bible, Chaucer's tales and poetry, Milton's major works, and various other religious poets. His dissertation on The Boethian Vision of Eternity in Old, Middle, and Early Modern English Translations of De Consolatione Philosophiæ includes analysis of works by King Alfred the Great, Chaucer, and Queen Elizabeth I. In addition to his courses in Composition, Literature, and Technical Writing, he also enjoys studying and teaching film—his M.A. thesis was over Scottish nationalism and Braveheart.

While at the University of Kentucky, Kenneth earned a graduate certificate in Electronic Texts, with an emphasis on Computing for Humanities, a discipline interested in addressing teaching, learning, and research in the Humanities with the tools, methods, and technologies of Computer Science. He was associated at that time with organizations and projects such as the Collaboratory for Research in Computing for Humanities, The Digital Atheneum, ARCHway, The Electronic Boethius Project, and The Student Edition of Electronic Beowulf.

His most recent scholarly work has been in collaboration with the International Boethius Society, having developed the organization's online newsletter in 2012: In the spring of 2015, Dr. Hawley was named co-editor of Carmina Philosophiae: the Journal of the International Boethius Society, joining Dr. Harold Kaylor (Troy University), the founding editor of the journal. He and Professor Kaylor traveled to Sheffield, UK, in the spring of 2016 to gather and ship back to LCU a collection of rare books and scholarly volumes related to the life, work, and influence of Boethius—a remarkable library generously donated by the estate of Professor Brian S. Donaghey, a Trustee of the International Boethius Society. The books from that collection, as well as hundreds of books recently given by Professor Kaylor, are now housed in The Brian S. Donaghey Center for Boethian Studies, located in the LCU Library.

Dr. Hawley teaches Composition (ENG 1301), Composition and Literature (ENG 1302), Masterpieces of Literature (ENG 2301), Writing About Literature (HON 1302), Making Connections: Literature and Life (HON 2307), Classical and Contemporary Rhetoric (ENG 3307), Technical Writing (ENG 3308), Christianity and Literature (ENG 4306), Comparative Literature (ENG 4314), Introduction to Film Studies (ENG 3326), Research Writing (ENG 4318), Major British Writers to 1800 (ENG 4315), and Literature and Film (ENG 4326). Kenneth and his wife Deborah have three children: Will, Ben, and Cole.

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Dr. Gary Lindsey is a Professor of History at Lubbock Christian University. He graduated from Texas tech University with a Bachelor of Architecture degree. He received his masters in History from Abilene Christian University and his PhD in History from Texas Tech. From there, he taught for five years at a private Christian school in Fort Worth, where he is originally from. He went on to teach as an adjunct professor at ACU, taught ten years at Oklahoma Christian University, and taught in the History Dept. and the College of Architecture at Texas Tech. More recently, this is his 5thyear at LCU. He is a member of the Phi Alpha Theta National History Honor Society and is a founding member of LCU’s Alpha Rho Gamma chapter of Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. He and his wife were married for 52 years before she passed last October. His son, Blake, lives in Mansfield and his daughter, Lauren, lives in Abilene. He has 4 grandkids and a black-and-white cat named Socks. He enjoys reading about history and architecture, running, and golf. 

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Dr. Keith Owen is a proud part of the Lubbock Christian University graduating class of 1973. He graduated with a BA in English and History and a minor in Education Certification. He was inspired by Lester Perrin, a former history professor at Lubbock Christian College. After student teaching, he furthered his education at Texas Tech and completed his PhD. His first classroom was at Lubbock Christian School, where he taught for 6 years. From there, he moved to Lubbock ISD for 10 years. Later, he accepted a position at Lubbock Christian University. This is his 30th year at LCU. He is originally from Vernon, Texas, but he and his wife, Syl, have lived in Lubbock for 40+ years. They have three children: Conor, Vicky, and John Michael. Conor and his family live in San Angelo, Vicky and her family live in Azle, and John Michael lives here in Lubbock. Dr. Owen enjoys hunting, fishing and collecting historical weapons. He is fascinated by British history and is always up to lead a tour of Great Britain. He has embarked on multiple trips with LCU to England, Italy, Austria, Spain, France, Ireland, and Greece. He is extremely passionate about his job and he absolutely loves to be in a classroom!

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Profile Photo of Jana Anderson

Jana Anderson began her career at Abilene Christian University, where she taught in the English department for almost a decade, followed by a tenure at Tyler Junior College in Tyler, where she and her family moved for ministry at the Glenwood Church of Christ. In 2005, she moved to Lubbock and returned to full-time teaching at LCU, following a 4-year season as a work-at-home mom; in addition to her work in the classroom, in 2010 she was selected to create and direct the University Writing Center, an interdisciplinary writing resource for all LCU students. She enjoys leading the annual Writing Carnival at LCU each year, which honors a great book (or series of books), highlights the joy of writing and academic competition, and fosters community and collegiality. She loves collaboration, and one of her greatest pleasures is working on a presentation, project, or event with staff and faculty colleagues and students. She and her family serve at the South Plains Church of Christ and are involved in leading a weekly small group and in teaching ministries. She is married to Rob Anderson (minister at the South Plains Church of Christ and adjunct professor at LCU in the College of Biblical Studies), and they have two children, Luke and Grace. They are her bucket list. She is passionate about her family, her students, her work at LCU, her family of friends, writing, young adult and children’s literature, culturally diverse literature, with a focus on Latino literature, grant writing, British literature, poetry, great books, her book club (Shelf Indulgence), her church family and small group family, and life. It’s all a gift. 

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Profile Photo of Amy Smith

Amy Smith is the Academic Administrative Assistant for the Department of Humanities as well as the Department of Communications and Fine Arts. She graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University in 2000 with a bachelor's degree in business. Before coming to Lubbock, she worked for a law firm in Nacogdoches. From there, she worked for Baylor University, where her husband, Ryan, was getting his master's degree in Wind Conducting. Today, she has been with Lubbock Christian University for 6 years. She has three children: Chloe, Camden, and Carson. Her husband is the fine arts director for Frenship ISD. She and her family have a cat named Lucy and a tailless Crested Gecko named George. She has many roles in her position, including managing the Annual Writing Carnival, English and History Honors Societies, degree plans, and much more. She adores reading— her favorite book is Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier. She enjoys traveling, camping, and hiking with her family in their RV.

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