In 1893, J.M.P. Otts, D.D., LL.D., a distinguished alumnus of Davidson, left a sum of money to the College to endow a lecture series in the field of Religion. The Religion Department has continued since then to host the Otts Lectures. In recent years the Otts series has brought to campus the following lecturers:
Bart Ehrman, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, "Is the New Testament Confused?" and "Is the New Testament Forged?" Co-Sponsored by the Maloney Lectureship.
Dale Martin, Yale University, "Angels and Demons" and "The Apostle Paul."
Deidre McCloskey, University of Illinois at Chicago, “The Theology of an Ethical Capitalism.” Co-sponsored by the Samuel D. Maloney Lecturship as part of a Maloney-Otts Symposium: “Christianity and Capitalism.”
William Schweiker,University of Chicago, “The Theology of an Ethical Capitalism.” Co-sponsored by the Samuel D. Maloney Lecturship as part of a Maloney-Otts Symposium: “Christianity and Capitalism.”
Kathryn Tanner, University of Chicago, “Grace and Global Capitalism.” Co-sponsored by the Samuel D. Maloney Lecturship as part of a Maloney-Otts Symposium: “Christianity and Capitalism.”
Mary Ann Tolbert, Pacific School of Religion, "Homoeroticism and the Bible.”
James VanderKam, University of Notre Dame, "The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Bible.”
Wendy Farley, Emory University, "Passion and Contemplation in Christian and Buddhist Thought.”
James H. Cone, Union Theological Seminary, "Martin, Malcolm and America.”
Stanley M. Hauerwas, Duke University, "Why Christians Should be Pacifists: The Ethics of War and Peace.”
Mary Ann Tolbert, Vanderbilt University, "The Bible: Hope of the Oppressed or Weapon of the Oppressor?"
Gerald Bonner, Catholic University, "The Pelagian Controversy: A Storm in a Teacup.”
H. Jackson Forstman, Vanderbilt University, "Theological Foundations for Resistance to Tyranny: The Case of Germany Under the Shadow of Hitler.”
W. Sibley Towner, Union Theological Seminary (Richmond).1986 Wayne Meeks, Yale University.1985 Milner Ball, University of Georgia.
Lecturers between 1953 and 1985 include George Buttrick, Paul Lehman, JohnCobb, and Robert McAfee Brown.