Saturday, June 16, 2012

Louvre, Montmartre, Orsay and Arc de Triomphe

 The course is getting off to a great start this year--despite the rain!

Yesterday, Friday, June 15, we went to the Louvre. Because the museum is so huge, Dr. King and I prepared an activity sheet and we sent the students off to find works of art related to the course. After a few hours at the Louvre, we went up to Montmartre to the Cimetière de Montmartre to visit the first tomb of the French writer and journalist, Emile Zola (tomorrow, we will visit his final resting place at the Panthéon!). Then, it was off to the "Martyrium" where we spent a few minutes reflecting on the origins of the Society of Jesus. Back in 1534, St. Ignatius Loyola and his friends made their first vows at the Martyrium. We also toured the Sacré Coeur Basilica and had some shopping time before dinner.
Paris Course students at Zola's "first" tomb

Basilique Sacré Coeur

Today, we visited the Musée d'Orsay, which houses a famous collection of impressionist paintings and nineteenth-century art; after lunch, our two graduate students gave presentations on the Pont des Arts. Grad students read extra books for the course. Today's presentations were on Emile Zola's novel The Masterpiece. Dena Ebert spoke about the relationship between painting and writing in the novel and Doug Allers discussed the role of the river Seine in the novel. They were great! Thanks to them both for such thought provoking presentations.

Doug Allers gives his presentation

Dena Ebert presenting on the Pont des Arts

Finally, we went to the Champs-Elysées and climbed to the top of the Arc de Triomphe where we had a wonderful view of Paris.

Loyola Paris Course undergrads "spell" Loyola U!

Tomorrow, the Pantheon, the Montparnasse Cemetery, the Luxembourg Gardens and a philosophical discussion at Les Deux Magots, a café that dates back to the 30s and 40s and was an 
existentialist hangout. Stay tuned!

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