six literal days

Razib at Gene Expression posts a link to this story about Evolution & Creationism in Christian colleges.

The article reports on 2 Christian colleges with differing policies on teaching about evolution. One Professor explains: “I teach that the universe was created in six literal days. We believe that the Genesis account refers to literal 24-hour periods.”

Can somebody help me understand what this could mean? What is a literal “day,” or a literal “hour,” before the sun exists? It’s fine with me if they want construe “day” in some way other than the time it takes for earth to rotate on its axis, but in that case what could the word “literal” possibly mean?

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