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June 22 - June 28

Kenyon Summer Seminar

The 2014 Program: Great Books, Great Ideas

Yours for a summer week: the exhilaration of exploring books that changed the world, on one of the world’s most beautiful campuses.

Take a vacation with Homer, Dante, Cervantes, Ralph Ellison, Gabriel García Márquez, and other immortal authors. Guided by brilliant professors with a passion for teaching, you’ll discover—or rediscover—writing that shaped civilization. In small seminars, with like-minded adult learners, you’ll discuss ideas that challenge you, language that inspires you, and questions that remain profoundly relevant. And you’ll have plenty of time to read, write, relax and socialize on a campus renowned for its beauty.

You can choose one or two seminars from ten offerings. Our professors have designed these week-long courses around works that they love and they consider central to their fields—indeed, to the life of the mind.

Seminars meet for three hours either in the morning or afternoon, for six days. During your free time, you can read or work on short assignments, take advantage of the many recreational opportunities the campus has to offer, and enjoy “Suggested Pairings,” from trips to workshops. At dinner, you’ll be able to meet the professors and participants from other seminars.


A Typical Day

8:00 am

Breakfast at Peirce Hall

9:00 am

Morning Seminar Class Time

Suggested Courses:

"Homer, Herodotus and Us" (Michael Evans)


Gabriel Garcia Marquez and the Astonishing Reality of Latin America" (Clara Román-Odio)


"Machiaveilli's The Prince" (Pamela Jensen)


"Movies That Changed the Movies" (Peter Rutkoff)


"Tales from Travelers on the Path of Love: Spiritual and Material Journeys in Islam" (Vernon Schubel)

10:00 am

Suggested Pairings Workshop

12:00 pm

Lunch in Peirce Hall

1:00 pm

Afternoon Seminar Class Time

Suggested Courses:

“The Essays of Montaigne" (Fred Baumann)


Don Quixote (Or Is It Quijote?) (Daniel Hartnett)


Reading Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man (Theodore Mason)


Dante's Divine Comedy (Timothy Shutt)


Divine Fury: The History of Genius (Darrin M. McMahon)

2:00 pm

Suggested Pairings Workshop

5:30 pm

Faculty Lecture, followed by wine and cheese

6:00 pm

Dinner in Peirce Hall

8:00 pm

Evening Activities (coffee house, Summer Seminar Night at the Village Inn, etc.)