‘British Literature’ winter course sails for England

London Mount Mercy University's Winter Term (J-Term) course "British Literature and Culture" will journey to England January 12 – 21 during a unique study abroad trip to absorb more fully the major works of British literature while also experiencing the art, history and cityscapes that produced them.

Professor of English Mary Vermillion, Ph.D., and Assistant Professor of English Chris DeVault, Ph.D., will lead the class of 20 students through a variety of landscapes and scenic tours, including Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, the Tower of London, St. Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, the British Museum, Stonehenge and Canterbury Cathedral. The group will also take literary walks in London, Bath and Oxford, walking in the footsteps and seeing much of the same sites that inspired authors such as Jane Austen.

I'm hoping that this course will give me the opportunity to put some concrete imagery to a number of scenes and locales that I have read about dozens of times in various English classes.

"I firmly believe that seeing and experiencing what the author was thinking about while writing gives the story that much more meaning and depth," says Dan Morgan, a senior English and criminal justice major from Marion, Iowa.

"Students get a stronger sense of the relationship between literature and history as well as literature and other parts of a culture when they have the opportunity to explore the place where a writer lived and worked," says Vermillion. "Studying abroad fuels your curiosity and leads you to observe more closely. It makes you eager to learn, to see the world through other people's eyes, to see yourself and your own culture with fresh eyes."

Mount Mercy continues to offer programs and courses designed with an international flare. Several new trips are in development for the upcoming academic year, including an intensive Spanish course in Costa Rica, an MBA course in Brazil, a European Union course which will examine the economies and cultures of Germany, France, and England, a course on the historical and cultural development of Spain, and an education course going to England over spring break to observe teacher training classes and visit schools.

Last January the business class, "European Union: Culture, Politics and Economics" and the social work class, "Social Welfare: Worldview," traveled to Europe and provided students with the opportunity to delve into the politics, economics, social welfare system and art of the historic areas of London, Canterbury, Paris and Brussels.

For more information on Mount Mercy's unique study abroad opportunities, contact Director of International Programs Catharine Cashner, at ccashner@mtmercy.edu. 

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