Ireland will come to life at Indiana University Kokomo through a series of new courses, including the possibility of traveling to the Emerald Isle. A recent trip by Professors Eva White and Sarah Heath provided the research and first-hand knowledge to create three classes that will take a closer look at Irish literature, culture, and history.
“The Great Irish Famine in History and Literature” online course will kick off the series this spring semester.
“Many of our students in the Kokomo region are of Irish heritage and are interested in finding out more about their family and genealogy,” Heath said. “This is a great learning opportunity for all our students. These courses will give students more choices, as well as provide another opportunity to travel abroad.”
The second course will focus on the late 19th and early 20th centuries, leading up to the Irish independence movement and Irish emigration to America. The third will deal with contemporary Ireland, from the mid 20th century to the present, and explore Ireland’s new multicultural identity. This course will give students the opportunity to travel to Ireland. These courses are not yet named, but will tentatively be offered in the fall of 2012 and summer of 2013.
While in Ireland, Heath and White visited key sites important in designing the new courses and for planning student travel to Ireland. For example, in Dublin, they visited The Jeanie Johnston Tall Ship Famine Museum and the Dublin Famine memorial, as well as the Abbey Theatre, which played a crucial role in the Celtic Revival and the construction of the new Irish identity.
“I have no doubt that these faculty will deliver what they promise,” said Erwin Boschmann, interim dean for the School of Arts and Sciences. “The courses they propose will be of interest not only to our campus, but to other IU campuses as well.”