Skip to Main Navigation | Skip to Content
University of Central Missouri
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Contact: Mike Greife
WARRENSBURG, MO (Feb. 28, 3014) – Marla J. Selvidge, director of the Center for Religious Studies at the University of Central Missouri, has published a new book, "For the Love of Elvis."
Selvidge recently spent three years developing a new online course at UCM, "Elvis. Memphis Messiah."
During her research, which amounted to hundreds of books and videotapes, Selvidge was compelled to write a positive book about Elvis. Shortly before his death, two of his Elvis’ bodyguards wrote a tell-all book that debased Elvis. Claims were made of addiction to prescription drugs and womanizing. After his death media personalities enhanced their careers by writing fictitious books about Elvis, some with pornographic narratives.
Selvidge also read books written by very close friends of Elvis, which included Kathy Westmoreland, Charlie Hodge, Ed Parker, and Dr. Nick. All of them denied the tabloids and tell-all books. All, including Elvis' father Vernon, claimed that before Elvis died he had bone cancer or leukemia. Many of those around Elvis did not know of his terminal illness. Elvis also had many inherited and systemic diseases that he attempted to manage.
In 10 chapters that explore his childhood, career, and death, readers will learn of a generous Elvis who gave away most of his $5 billion dollars in earnings. They also find a Southerner who stood tall for his heritage in spite of the hostilities he encountered throughout the United States. In more ways than any other entertainer in the 20th century, Elvis modeled equality for females and non-traditional males. He stepped away from the mechanical John Wayne image to a gentler, more caring image. He did not want to dominate his audience; he loved and cherished them in a way that no other performer has done.