Oberlin in London, Spring 2020

There will be two separate curricular tracks this semester. Roughly half the students will enroll in courses in British Modernism and the London stage (taught by David Walker), as well as a class in the history of London (taught by Katy Layton-Jones). The other students will take courses on social class in Britain (taught by Marc Blecher), as well as a class in theater and politics (team-taught by Donna Vinter and Marc Blecher).

Click here for: Course descriptions | Calendar

The Faculty:

Marc Blecher

Marc Blecher, Politics

London has become my second home, thanks to the opportunities I've had to teach on the London Program in 1993, 1998, 2003, and 2012. So I can't wait to turn a new group of Obies on to my favorite city. All its thrilling cosmopolitan sophistication aside, London has also profoundly shaped my work as a social scientist and citizen, offering fresh perspectives on politics, society, economics, and international affairs that provide invaluable antidotes to many conventional American nostrums. My research specialty is Chinese politics (focusing especially on workers), but my teaching spans wider questions of class power and inequalities. London is, for me, a natural setting to explore those issues, since so many Brits actually still think and talk about them.

David Walker


David Walker, English

This will be my seventh time teaching on the London Program, and I’m excited about the chance to introduce another group of Oberlin students to a city I know well and love. My teaching interests center on twentieth-century literature, drama, and creative writing. In Oberlin I regularly offer courses on modernist fiction, Shakespeare, contemporary poetry and drama, and playwriting. I also have considerable experience with theater as an actor, director, and frequent playgoer, including leading groups of Oberlin alums on London theater study tours every other summer for the last 20 years. The first time I taught on the London Program, I felt as though it was the sort of teaching I was born to do, and I’m no less passionate about it now.



Resident London Program Faculty:

Donna Vinter (Staging Politics)

Katy Layton-Jones (A History of London)


Application: The application process is online, via the Study Away website.

1. To find the London Program in the portal, go to the Programs menu, search for "London," and the Oberlin-in-London Program will appear in the list.
2. You will not need to apply for an Academic Leave of Absence. You do need to complete the Approval Form (see #3 below), but your application will not need to be approved by the Off Campus Study Committee, nor will you be on an ALOA while studying on the program.
3. Note that you will need your advisor's signature on the Application Approval Form (downloadable from the portal), so don't wait until the last minute to make an appointment with them. (Note: if you have two advisors, then both need to sign.)
4. Be sure to ask a faculty member if they're willing to write you a recommendation before entering their name in the application, since doing so will trigger an immediate email request to them, and you wouldn't want that to come as a surprise.
5. If you have any questions about the online application, you can ask for help in the Study Away office, Carnegie 124.