Mayterm 2019 Borders, Boundaries, and Brexits: Jerusalem to Belfast
How do borders come to be? How do they function to tell us who we are, who we are not, and how we should remember conflict? How have natural resources shaped peoples and places? How have conflicts and borders changed the environment, both culturally and physically? How are current issues of identity and resources shaping borders and peoples in Northern Ireland and Israel/Palestine?
We will engage in readings, site visits, lectures, discussions, testimonies, and reflection. Site visits ask us to wrestle with how a physical space, a wall, or a public monument gives tangible shape to our core themes of war, peace, memory, and identity stories. Encounters with lecturers, storytellers, and eyewitnesses help us hear the stories of others, compare accounts with historical record and shared narratives, and develop our moral imaginations in pursuing peace.
Study the roots and effects of violent conflict Israel/Palestine, and Northern Ireland. Think deeply about how religion may both divide and unify warring people. Make connections between the natural environment and human symbolic activity. Explore spiritual disciplines and practices that are life-giving and peaceable. Enjoy traveling in community with Westmont students and professors.
The program begins with intensive coursework and lectures on campus. During the evenings students will spend two hours watching relevant films. The time on campus is an important time for the cohort to build community and prepare for the travel portion of the program.
The cohort will stay in a guesthouse in Jerusalem, attend church in Bethlehem, visit Jericho and tour Nazareth. You will not be a tourist but a scholar and a pilgrim in these sacred cities. You will engage your heart and your mind while you discover the history, politics, people, and cultures that have shaped this region of the world.
As you make you way to Northern Ireland, you will discover the beauty of the landscape and how it can feed the soul. And much like Israel, you will learn about the history of conflict at its borders and how the tragedies in the past have shaped the present. You will visit Rostrevor, Belfast, Ballycastle, and Dublin along the way.
You will be challenged to think broadly and deeply on the themes of how borders come to be, how natural resources can be an element in conflict, and how to move toward peace and reconciliation via interfaith dialogue and deliberation as well as incorporating spiritual practices toward more sustainable living in community. Students earn major credit for communications studies or elective credit; fulfills GE Thinking Historically .
The two course will be taught in tandem as you look at case studies most notable at the post-Good Friday Agreement in Israel-Palestine and Brexit Northern Ireland in the United Kingdom. Your feet will get dusty and sore on the path of conflict. You will experience bodily a space, a memorial, a performance, and the resulting uncertainties, anxieties, and triumphs that accompany the journey to, in, and through new places, peoples, and cultures. Students earn credit for special topics course (RS 107 or COM 195) or elective credit; fulfills elective credit for Environmental Studies minor
Deborah Dunn earned a Ph.D. and M.A. in communication arts and sciences from the University of Southern California. She came to Westmont in the Fall of 1997, was awarded Teacher of the Year in 2008, has led seven summer study abroad programs on conflict, memory, and pilgrimage in Europe, South Africa, and the Middle East. She studies grassroots peacemaking organizations, dialogue, and transforming conflict.
Caryn Reeder earned a B.A. from Augustana College, an M.A. in biblical studies from Wheaton College, and an M.Phil. in Old Testament and Ph.D. in New Testament from the University of Cambridge. She came to Westmont in 2007. Dr. Reeder has lived in Israel, the West Bank, and the United Kingdom. She’s also led student programs in the Middle East and Europe. She studies violence in the Bible and biblical worlds, especially as it relates to gender, the household, and children.
$6888 plus one way airfares TO Tel Aviv and HOME from Northern Ireland-- All other expenses are included (housing, food, admissions, additional inter-European air travel). Program dates: May 6-10 on campus, May 13-June 12 abroad.
- Class standing
- GPA (minimum 2.3 gpa for eligibility)
- Application and essays
- Personal and faculty recommendations
Application deadline has passed. If you want to learn more about off-campus programs, email email@example.com to make an appointment.