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The 1980s: Christianity Challenges the University

In the 1980s, groups of UW faculty presented public lectures in the Great Hall of the Memorial Union, in dialogue with the University from a Christian perspective. One of these was eventually published in book form as Christianity Challenges the University (InterVarsity Press, 1981). The contributors included Wayne Becker (now emeritus, Botany), Dave Richardson (Economics; since 1991 at Syracuse University; web site), Archie MacKinney (now emeritus, Hematology), Keith Schoville (now emeritus, Hebrew and Semitic Studies), and Peter Wilkes (formerly in what is now Nuclear Engineering; Peter went on to become a pastor at Elmbrook Church, and most recently in the San Jose Area). These talks, and a subsequent set of talks entitled the “I Dissent” series, serve as a model for ways in which Christian faculty can engage the ideas and structures of the university today.

Wilkes, Peter, ed. Christianity Challenges the University. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press. Reproduced by permission of InterVarsity Press, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, and the authors. Questions about reproducing this material should be directed to the Webmaster.


This book is a written version of five lectures presented in the Great Hall of the Memorial Union at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. It bears the characteristics of its birth process in that the lecture format does not permit much excursion into detail. The purpose of publication in book form is to encourage others in universities to participate in such public discussions and to illustrate how it was done on one prestigious midwestern state campus.
The Publisher

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 - Introduction (Peter Wilkes)
Chapter 2 - The Christian World View - A Radical Alternative (Peter Wilkes)
Chapter 3 - Man: Naked Ape and Nothing More? (Wayne M. Becker)
Chapter 4 - Christian Doubts about Economic Dogmas (J. David Richardson)
Chapter 5 - The Reliability of the Scriptural Documents (Keith Schoville)
Chapter 6 - Christianity, Modern Medicine and the Whole Person (A.A. MacKinney)
Chapter 7 - And Then...

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