Beloit Students and Faculty Travel to Granada
This summer 15 Beloit students participated in an International Summer Block in Granada, Spain. While in Spain students learned to think about their surroundings and the complex confluence of ideas, peoples, structures, histories, and policies involved in creating them. During this process of gleaning a deeper understanding of a specific place, many critical questions emerged: Which cultural and historical factors formed this place? Where do we see how the past influences the present? Who lived/lives here? What are/were their beliefs? Who “belongs” and why? What are the challenges or particular pressures of making a life in this place? How are our own perceptions and identities influencing how we experience this city and its surrounding communities?
Connected to these questions, students developed various tools for reading and understanding urban environments, became familiar with relevant theoretical insights regarding the city and its places, gained a deeper understanding about the challenges and benefits of being a sojourner abroad with an “outsider’s” view, and learned about Granada’s particular challenges and concerns. Students in the course had many opportunities to actively learn from guest speakers, site visits, readings, and conversions, as they considered issues related to migration, citizenship, women, children, public spaces vs. private spaces, inclusion/exclusion, etc.