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Legacies of Empires: Power and Diversity in Rome, Vienna, Budapest, and Prague

Rome, Vienna, Budapest, and Prague, Italy, Austria, Hungary, and Czech Republic

Term Offered: 

Approximate Dates of Instruction: 
January 4, 2016 to March 11, 2016
Application Deadline: 
May 15, 2015
Info session on Friday, May 8th at 3:30pm in the CHID Lounge

The goal of this program is to reveal how our world of nation states is a very recent and fragile historical phenomenon. For many centuries, vast empires ruled and determined the lives and destinies of diverse peoples. Many of the ideas, ideals, ideologies and policies of the Roman, Byzantine, Hapsburg and Ottoman Empires are still relevant to understanding the often contradictory and unresolved issues of today’s world. This program will allow students to investigate these ideas and relationships in the sites where they once flourished.

As we examine the roots of contemporary issues of religious and cultural tolerance and intolerance, the program will also incorporate a forum for discussion and reflection on the ways in which we imagine and define our own identities - individually and collectively. We will connect with Roma populations – commonly and pejoratively known as 'Gypsies' – who comprise Europe’s largest minority. We will consider the ways in which minority identity is constructed within the power apparatus of society and state, examining the patterns of longstanding systematic discrimination. We will consider what it means to say “we”, and how the circle of the “we” is implicitly or explicitly exclusionary. How do notions of “identity” and “culture” further marginalize Roma populations? We will reflect on the rise of neo-fascism in Europe and we will explore the ways in which Romani people are pushing back against this discourse, especially through art activism.  

  • CHID 471A  - Empires: Cultural and Historical Legacies (5 credits)
  • CHID 471B - Power, Modernity, and Diversity (5 credits)
  • CHID 470 - Roma Identity, Art and Activism (5 credits)
Fulfills Requirements: 
CHID Cultural and Historical Engagement
CHID Power & Difference
I&S Credit
Total Program Fees: 

*Note that the fees stated above do not include some additional costs, including, but not limited to: airfare, Study Abroad Insurance (about $42/month), and personal spending money. Remember that these costs will differ by program. Be sure to read our Fees, Financing, and Withdrawal information for details about the fee structure and payment schedule.