Monday, December 29, 2014


Mike talks castles with students at Rumeli Fortress.

While we're travelling in Turkey check here for updates on where we've been and what we're learning. Our students will be posting regular reports and my co-teacher, Michael Carignan, and I will be posting pictures of students and sites. We invite you to comment if you want!

This is the third year that Elon's Honors program has offered the Turkey travel seminar. Mike has led it, along with our guide Saba Canliel, two different years and I had the opportunity to co-teach with Michael the first year. We both bring our academic specialties along with us to Turkey, providing students the opportunity to see how different disciplines shape academic inquiry. Also, for both Mike and I, our scholarly interests intersect with questions and material related to Turkey.

Michael teaches in the History department and focuses upon modern European Intellectual history. This means he is adept at having students think about how modern Turkey (beginning in the 18th and moving into the 21st century) relates to major themes in European thought. How does the Ottoman Empire fashion itself in relationship to Europe? How do European thinkers and politicians use Turkey as an "Eastern" and "Oriental" foil? Why does the modern Turkish republic construct its identity as uniquely "Turkish"? How do modern historical categories shape the way scholars approach the study of Turkey in positive and negative ways?

Lynn points out Roman ruins.
I teach in Elon's Religious Studies department and focus upon the New Testament and Early Christianity. I am particularly interested in how Christianity develops in the Roman province of Asia Minor, which later becomes known as Turkey. Questions I pose to students revolve around the religious diversity of the ancient world and the ways that political, religious, and cultural conversations intersect and overlap. I am also interested in the ways that material culture, the things left from the past, help us understand the diverse ways ancient people inhabited their worlds.

We look forward to teaching the Honors students and learning even more along aside of them as we encounter Turkey to together!


Lynn Huber

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