During their January break, a group of students traveled to Egypt and Rome for a 2-credit course.

Through examination of texts, art and architecture they studied two of the major cosmopolitan centers of the ancient Mediterranean.

Beginning in Alexandria, the port city of Alexander the Great, Antony and Cleopatra, they surveyed major historical developments from the Pharonic age, through the Greco- Roman and early Islamic periods, into the modern era.

In Egypt they visited:

  • catacombs,
  • Roman bath complex and theater,
  • the site of the Pharos lighthouse (originally one of the seven wonders of the ancient world),
  • the Greco-Roman and Alexandria National Museums,
  • mosques of Turkish Town,
  • the synagogue,
  • Coptic cathedral and
  • new Bibliotheca Alexandrina.

Before traveling to Italy they visited Cairo to see the Pyramids of Giza, the Sphinx, National Museum of Egyptian Antiquities and spend a night on the Nile.

In Rome, students visited:

  • period temples,
  • Theaters of Pompey and Marcellus,
  • the Forum and Palatine,
  • Forum of Augustus,
  • Ara Pacis,
  • Colosseum,
  • Arch of Titus,
  • Pantheon,
  • Trajan’s markets and forum,
  • St. Peter’s Basilica and necropolis,
  • the Vatican Museums,
  • medieval Trastevere,
  • Renaissance and Baroque churches and palazzi, and
  • the Jewish Ghetto.

The trip exposured students to thousands of years of history, city structures and institutions of differing relationships to imperialism and colonialism, focal points in the development of diverse forms of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, and varied challenges in terms of sustainability.

March 10 2011

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