Feeling at Home

By Jamie Brian

My first day on the JiangAn campus was a whirlwind of excitement.  I may not have liked the idea of catching a bus in the morning, but an early wake up call was well worth the opportunity that followed.I had the opportunity to attend a World Literature class taught by a professor from Spain.  I find translation to be very interesting, and I enjoyed learning about the theories involved in making a book available to an international audience.  In spite of country or language, there are common themes that unite all human beings: love, fear, power and friendship.  This was an interesting thought to consider sitting in a classroom with students from around the world. We may first read a book in different languages, but language barriers cannot divide us.  I made friends with many Chinese students in this class.  While they may not be fluent in English and I may not know much Mandarin, we still care about the same things. I connected with one girl because we both love movies and music, and something as simple as this brought us together.  I found myself applying the information I learned in the classroom to my own life.  I did much more in this seminar than just read “The Epic of Gilgamesh.”  I felt more at home in a foreign country because stories bridge differences between people.

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