Welcome to the King's College Program for 2002-03!

If you are a junior majoring in English at Penn, you should consider spending next semester studying abroad at King's College in London. Study abroad is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and can be an invaluable and unforgettable educational and cultural experience. English majors at Penn have a special chance to augment and enhance their education by spending all or part of an academic year studying English and American literature, film, and theater at King's. If you decide to make King's a part of your education, you'll take classes from King's faculty, live in dorms with King's students, and experience English culture firsthand. This Web site has been created to familiarize you with the program, as well as to whet your appetite by giving you a taste of virtual London. Enjoy--and if you possibly can, apply!

Erin O'Connor and Maurice Black are directing the program during the 2002-03 school year, assisted by Jessica Rosenfeld and Dillon Brown, two graduate students from Penn's English department. Together, we will work to ensure that you have the most fulfilling experience abroad as possible. To support you in your studies, we each hold regular office hours at the King's Strand campus in central London. And to help you make the most of London's rich cultural opportunities, we organize regular group excursions to a variety of places and events both in and out of London.

Picture of WalkOur fall schedule is designed to give students a taste of modern London while at the same time allowing them to encounter the living history that is England. We will go to art exhibitions and film festivals; we will visit ancient villages, castles, and the coast; we will walk Jack the Ripper's East End, gawk at the Lord Mayor's yearly procession, and celebrate Guy Fawkes Day the old fashioned way: at a bonfire where effigies of England's favorite traitor are annually burned. That's not all, either. Our online excursion calendar will give you the full picture. Here's a photo from our inaugural excursion, a guided walking tour of London's West End. Those are indeed Penn students posing with the guard at St. James' Palace (a former leper hospital that is now Prince Charles' house). The guard looks unflappable. But those who were there saw him trying not to smile.

Picture of Walk Our 2003 winter calendar will be similarly full and equally fun. We'll visit Stonehenge during the pagan festival of Beltane. We'll turn out with thousands of other spectators to watch the Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race. We'll celebrate the end of winter with a trip to Kew Gardens, followed by a glorious cream tea at the justly famous Maids of Honour. We'll catch the Benson & Hedges Masters (snooker at its finest). We'll see ten plays hand-picked by noted London theater critic Michael Billington, and possibly an opera or a ballet. We'll go to museums. We'll tour castles, country estates, and cemeteries. We may even take a weekend jaunt to Dublin or Paris.

London is a city that absolutely vibrates with history--to walk its streets is to understand what animated Dickens' fiction, what inspired the special modernism of Virginia Woolf and her Bloomsbury coterie, what the Blitz meant for a city that had long regarded itself as the capital of the world. English literature comes alive in new ways when you read it in England; so does one's understanding of what it means, and has meant, to be American.

Now is the time to apply if you would like to be a part of next year's program, which will be directed by Professor John Richetti. To find out more, be sure to check out the King's literature faculty here and course offerings in literature and film here. For basic information about such issues as academics, housing, and finances, click here. King's maintains a very detailed site for students coming from abroad, including information on course offerings, the logistics of getting there and settling in, and the all-important application form. The Cornell Brown Penn United Kingdom Centre is another invaluable resource. For more information on Penn's numerous abroad programs, visit Penn's Office of International Programs. If you or your parents have any questions about the program, please don't hesitate to contact John Richetti, Penn English's 2003-04 Undergraduate Chair Michael Gamer, or David Wallace, Chairman of Penn English. Professors Wallace, Gamer, and Richetti have all directed the King's Program in the past, and would be glad to speak with any interested student.

This page was last modified on Monday, 03-May-2004 22:19:42 EDT.
Site content and design © 2002-2003 Maurice Black and Erin O'Connor