Exploring England's Literary Landmarks

Posted: June 22, 2018

A bright and inquisitive group of adventurous Hope International University students, accompanied by Drs. Steve Edgington & Fay Ellwood, recently explored many of Great Britain’s literary landmarks as part of HIU’s 3-unit, study-abroad course, “Literature in the British Setting.” Prior to the trip, the class spent the spring semester researching, discussing, and presenting on great works of English literature. Then, the day after our Spring 2018 Commencement, the group flew to London for three and a half weeks of experiential learning.

Their travels included visits to numerous historical literary landmarks such as Charles Dickens’ House, Shakespeare’s Globe, Winchester Cathedral, the 13th century Salisbury Cathedral, Highclere Castle (AKA Downton Abbey), and Stonehenge.  Students also toured St. Julian’s church where Julian of Norwitch lived as an anchoress in the 1300s. Julian’s book, Revelations of Divine Love, is the first English book authored by a woman. The students studied excerpts from this powerful Christian work, which centers on the great love of God, and took time to pray in the very cell where St. Julian lived for over twenty years.

They journeyed south to Salisbury, stopping at Max Gate, the house designed by novelist, poet, and architect Thomas Hardy. At the Hardy house they sat in the very room where Hardy wrote Tess of the d’Urbrivilles, then enjoyed a spirited game of croquet in Hardy’s gardens.

The group also devoted time for group prayer, personal prayer, and spiritual reflection in the striking historic settings. Tintern Abbey was one of many sacred spaces they explored, along with numerous chapels, churches, and cathedrals.

“We returned to Los Angeles happy and tired after our whirlwind tour of literary and other historical sites. This trip afforded little down time with so much to be explored. Our students were engaged and thoughtful, and added much to the experience with their playful insights and passion for the literature that inspired the trip in the first place,” Dr. Ellwood reported of the group and their time abroad.

HIU offers this uniquely rich study abroad opportunity for credit every other summer. Student sign up and begin preparing themselves (and their finances) 18 months in advance of the memorable excursion.

For more information on HIU’s English Literature Program, click here.