Friday, August 29, 2014

Trip planned

Students to learn about philosopher C.S Lewis

Three faculty members and approximately 25 students will embark on a journey to learn about philosophy and the life of C.S. Lewis as they travel to London, Oxford and Paris May 18-26.

“We wanted to offer a unique, one-of-a-kind tour to accentuate the excitement of traveling abroad, studying where philosophy and humanities intersects powerfully with our own lives and cultures, and focusing on such a key Christian thinker as C.S. Lewis,” Dr. Edward Martin, co-chair of philosophy, said.

Martin and Dr. Michael Babcock, professor of humanities, started planning this trip in summer 2013. According to Martin, they considered how to incorporate the studies of philosophy and humanities in an impactful way.

They will spend four days in London and Oxford and three days in Paris, according to Martin. Some anticipated destinations include Westminster Abbey, St. Paul’s Cathedral, the British Library and Versailles.

Although they originally planned to travel only to London and Paris, Martin said they decided to incorporate places where bestselling author C. S. Lewis lived and worked so students can gain a valuable experience while learning about an influential Christian philosopher and apologist.

According to Martin, learning about famous people and events from history will serve as motivation to learn from the past and see God’s sovereign plan throughout history.

“The Lord still reigns and through studying the past thoughts, times and places,” Martin said. “As Lewis wrote, ‘No doubt all history in the last resort must be held by Christians to be a story with a divine plot.’”

According to Babcock, they will tour places associated with his everyday life, such as his home, the college where he taught classes and the pub where he met with J.R.R. Tolkien, as well as his gravesite.

Martin said this tour relates to the recently added Philosophy 465 class, which focuses on Lewis’s life. For students who took or plan to take this course, the trip provides valuable hands-on experiences.

In addition to learning about Lewis, the tour allows students to explore landmarks and gain a deeper understanding of the culture by immersion, according to Babcock.

“We will be immersing ourselves in the rich cultural legacy of three great cities — London, Oxford and Paris,” Babcock said. “Students will have the opportunity to learn by seeing and experiencing, not just reading about things in a book.”

This trip not only provides learning opportunities, but students who attend have the opportunity to earn course credit as well. According to Martin, students will fulfill the course requirements for humanities 101, philosophy 201 or philosophy 497/597 through the tour. He hopes that the trip will impact students’ lives in a powerful way.

“Being in the same places and spaces as famous historical people and events allows us to reflect on these events and key figures within them,” Martin said. “(This will) challenge our students and ourselves to learn history’s lessons and ultimately to go on to achieve great things for the Lord in our lives.”

Students interested in attending this study tour should contact Babcock at mbabcock@liberty.edu for more information.

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