On Monday, Feb. 4, students from Tusculum College offered a presentation of their recent study abroad trip to Barcelona, Spain. Students left for Spain on January 12, and returned on January 23.
Travelers included two Tusculum professors: Heather Patterson, assistant professor of English and chair of the English department and Wayne Thomas, associate professor of English and chair of the fine arts department, as well as thirteen students.
Students included Justin Reed, a senior from Florence, S.C.; Austen Herron, a junior from Durham, N.C.; Joe Borden, a senior from Lyles, Tenn.; Hilary Nowatski, a junior from Kingsport; Nathan Riddle, a senior from Danton, Ga.; Cheyenne Hartman, a senior from Louisa, Va.; Allison Harris, a senior from Franklin, Tenn.; Jeff Roberts, a junior from Breenbrier, Tenn.; Billie Jennings, a senior from Mountain City, Tenn.; Trevor Long, a junior from Atkins, Va.; Andrew Baker, a senior from Athens, Tenn.; James Cox, a senior from Greeneville, and William Kemper, a senior from Greeneville.
The presentation came in a unique form as students utilized the Allison Gallery inside the Rankin House on Tusculum’s Greeneville campus. Pictures of various sights taken during the trip spanned the gallery, providing viewers with an opportunity to glimpse Catalonian culture.
While attendants moved through the gallery, viewing images of locations such as the monastery at Montserrat, Sagrada Familia and the Spanish Gothic quarter, members of Patterson’s “Advanced Studies in Fiction” class read from works they crafted from inspiration received during and after the trip. Students in Thomas’ class were participating in “Seminar in Literature in Society.”
The presentation also included a short documentary film created by the students that explained their responses to the immersion of Catalonian culture. Senior creative writing major, Reed explained, “Barcelona is a hotbed for conflict between Catalonian Separatists and Spanish Unionists. You walk around and can see separatist flags hanging from apartment terraces and building rafters, realizing the distinction this culture has from the whole of Spain. They want this complex crisis known, and in coming back I want the global public to become more informed of it.”
Outside of the distinctly political atmosphere currently embedded in Barcelona to the city’s historical significance, Professor Thomas said, “having the opportunity, in a single day, to walk from streets that are less than 50 years old, to ones that are almost 2,000 is amazing. You become caught up in the beauty of it.”