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Honors College at the University of New Mexico
Tolkien Field Experience 
Co-taught by Leslie Donovan and Megan Abrahamson

This short-term international field experience provides opportunities for
 advanced students to study the connections between the life and works of J. R. R. Tolkien through field experience in the places he spent his early life - Birmingham, England- as well as his early professional career in Oxford, England.
Multiple credit and semester options available
CR may be earned in any of the following ways:                                                                                            
Sarehole Mill by Oosoom
 Spring 2017, 2nd 8 weeks Honors course described in more detail below - 3 CR
 Intersession Honors Independent Study course with Dr. Donovan - 1, 2, or 3 CR
● Summer 2017 Honors Independent Study course with Dr. Donovan - 1, 2, or 3 CR
● Graduate credit possible through English or Comparative Literature Independent Study course with Dr. Donovan - 1, 2, or 3 CR
 No credit participation options also may be also possible after consultation with Dr. Donovan

Spring 2017 - 2nd 8 weeks term - 3 CR
(UHON 498.002, CRN: 44360)

UNM students to produce an in-depth project related some aspect of the life or works of J. R. R. Tolkien. The course and project will culminate in a 10-day study abroad program in Birmingham, England, where Tolkien grew up and which formed much of his adult imagination. This field study component of the course will occur immediately following the close of the spring semester from about May 16-26. Through preparatory research while at UNM and later in-country fieldwork, students enrolled in Tolkien Field Experience will develop a topic of their own that investigates two or more of these overarching concepts: people (biography), space (geography), culture (group identity), and time (history). These concepts will provide lenses allowing us to focus our understanding of the literary corpus and achievement for which Tolkien has become so famous. Prior to the study abroad component, the course will be conducted on an Arranged basis, meaning that students will not meet together as a group every week.

While in Birmingham, students will not only explore firsthand the sites important to Tolkien’s childhood, youth, and early adulthood in their international setting, but will also produce an original, interdisciplinary research project that they design for themselves. Students in this course must have a strong, prior understanding of at least one of Tolkien’s written works.
Moseley Bog

Readings and Texts
Readings will be provided online and will include, among others: Research from archival sources; readings and materials on research practices in the humanities; materials documenting the Tolkien Trail in Birmingham, England; materials from the Tolkien Society’s fan archives.

Course Fee
$2,000.00 (some financial aid is available; request info from the instructor): The course fee covers all lodging, ground transportation in while in Great Britain, admission fees for museums and other historical sites, lectures and workshops conducted by local experts, and some meals. Students must purchase their own airfare separately as well as some meals.

Course Requirements
Attentive and careful reading, responsible attendance, active class participation, short weekly exercises (1-2 pages) both at UNM and in Birmingham, 1 field study proposal (8 pages minimum), 1 final interdisciplinary research paper (15 pages minimum).

All students must acquire the instructor’s permission to enroll. 

This site provides information about the 2017 Tolkien Field Experience program taught in the Honors College at the University of New Mexico by Leslie Donovan and Megan Abrahamson.