For a better experience, click the Compatibility Mode icon above to turn off Compatibility Mode, which is only for viewing older websites.

Upcoming Courses

Poland: History, Hauntings, Heritage

The Program & Academics

The trip is a 10-day tour of Warsaw, Poland, with an emphasis on the Jewish heritage of the country. Prior to the Treblinka Death CampSecond World War, Poland was the seat of Jewish culture. The greatest Jewish artists, dramatists, and thinkers lived in Poland. It was a vibrant source of Jewish language (Yiddish) and culture. The Holocaust wiped out two-thirds of the Jewish community in Poland, and today, there are only about 40-50,000 people with Jewish roots still living there. The vast majority of Jewish manuscripts and pieces of art have been lost, the vibrancy of Jewish life is gone, and people often refer to Yiddish as a “dead language.”

Our spring course is focused on the relationship between the aesthetic and the supernatural. We will be reading texts and surveying visual, historical, and psychological representations of the supernatural throughout the quarter to consider the role of the aesthetic in capturing and representing the supernatural and the relationship between the emotional and the aesthetic in the face of the supernatural. The trip to Poland builds on this in-class foundation by offering an on-ground experience that will enable students to fully envelop themselves in the relationship between history and the kinds of hauntings (literal and figurative) that historical traumas produce. We will be focusing on the traces left behind after the war: visiting synagogues and memorial sites. We will probe the same relationships we’ve interrogated in the classroom, considering physical spaces as their own “texts.” We will also tour concentration camps, offering students an opportunity to experience their own relations to historical traumas, to consider the ramifications this unsurpassed historical moment has had on our cultural aesthetic, and to fully parse the significance of a haunted history.

Instructors: Simchi Cohen, PhD and Rachel Wenrick, MFA

Program Calendar

  • Spring term 2015: Required 3 credit UNIV 241 course “Haunted Histories.”
  • June 13 - 21, 2015: “Poland – History, Hauntings, Heritage” – 1 credit HNRS 450

Tentative Itinerary

  • June 13 – Arrive in Warsaw
  • June 14-20 – The itinerary will tentatively include: Walking tour of Warsaw, Museum of the History of Polish Jews, Treblinka Death Camp, Radegast Memorial, Auschwitz and Birkenau, among other site visits.
  • June 21 – Depart Warsaw

Study Tour Program Fee: $150

  • Due with acceptance into travel-integrated course: $150 deposit
  • All program fee payments are only refundable in the unlikely event of trip cancellation
* Pennoni Honors College is offering a $1500 award to PHC students (covers items included below in program fee)

Included in Program Fee:
  • Lodging in Poland
  • In-country travel expenses
  • Lectures/programming
  • Some meals

Expenses not included in program fee (approx. $2000): Airfare, passport, some meals, spending money for incidentals and souvenirs

Visa: Not required for US citizens; Other nationalities should check the Polish Embassy website. Visa cost is $90.

Apply Now