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GSTR 210 Reader, 2018

This page provides digital versions of essays from The GSTR 210 Reader. Although a generic citation is provided, please consult the printed text for specific page numbers when citing these documents.


Berea's Story

John G. Fee to Cassius Clay (1844)

Experiment in Interracial Education

The Day Law

Berea College and Interracial Education

"Ain't Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around"

The Great Commitments (1969)

The Great Commitments of Berea College (1969)

by Dean Louis Smith

In 1969, President Willis Weatherford formally published Dean Louis Smith’s list of Berea College’s goals—including the fostering of learning, labor, and service—as the seven “Great Commitments.” President Weatherford encouraged the Faculty to affirm the Great Commitments as the guiding sentiment of the College. The Commitments had been used elsewhere before, but he framed them as the central statement of the College's mission. In 1993, Berea’s Faculty and Trustees revised the Weatherford-Smith text so as to include eight Great Commitments and a new preface. During the 2017 academic year, the Great Commitments were revised again by the Strategic Planning Committee (informed by the work of the Great Committees), presented to the faculty, and approved by the Board of Trustees.

  • To provide an educational program of high quality.
  • To have a liberal arts foundation and outlook for all aspects of the college program.
  • To emphasize throughout its program the Christian ethic and the motive of service to mankind.
  • To promote the ideas of brotherhood, equality, and democracy with particular emphasis on interracial education.
  • To provide an educational opportunity for students who have high ability and limited economic resources.
  • To serve primarily the Appalachian area—its people to be benefited mainly by education, but with other appropriate services as well.
Smith, Dean Louis. "The Great Commitments of Berea College (1969)." GSTR 210 Reader. Berea, KY: Berea College, 2017. 89.

Rewriting Commitments

The Great Commitments (1993)

Great Commitments Re-articulation Work

Great Commitments (2017)

Women's Education

Dress Regulations

Christian Self-Understanding

Christian Identity

An Educational Program for Appalachian America

Appalachia: Who Cares, and So What?

Education and Exploitation

Epilogue to Education and Exploitation

Appalachian Values

Appalachian Values Reconsidered

Appalachian Pride (In the Name of Love)

Up From the Holler

Topic Guide