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Honors: The Bloomsbury Group and Intellectual Life in early 20th-Century London


London, England

Program Description

The Bloomsbury Group is a celebrated and extraordinarily productive group of intellectuals, artists and public figures who were friends and lived in or near the Bloomsbury district of London in the early 20th century. It includes well-known figures such as Virginia Woolf and E.M. Forster (literature), Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant (art), Leonard Woolf (politics), and John Maynard Keynes (economics).

The Bloomsbury Group Seminar will begin with class meetings on the JMU campus during the spring semester of 2016 to become acquainted with the principal figures of the Bloomsbury Group and their contributions to their respective fields. During this period students will also get to know one another and the instructors as they prepare for three weeks in London beginning May 12, 2016.

During these three weeks abroad the program will continue with weekday seminars on the accomplishments and personalities of the Bloomsbury Group to be normally followed by a London outing. Coursework will include readings, written responses to some of the readings, and the completion of a research project in addition to participation in class and the class outings.

Location Description

Students and the instructors will stay in a hotel in the Bloomsbury district of London where classes will be held weekday mornings, normally followed by an outing to a local attraction. The hotel is within walking distance of central London and offers easy access to the city's excellent subway and bus system.

The program includes a day in Cambridge to see the University, Trinity and Kings’ Colleges, and even “punt” on the River Cam. A second day trip visits Sussex to see the country homes of Virginia Woolf (Monk’s House) and Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant (Charleston Farmhouse). Several group dinners, high tea, and an evening at a London theater will be provided. The schedule will include free time for personal explorations of London as well as a three-day weekend giving students the opportunity to travel around the British Isles, to Europe, or elsewhere in and around the London area.


Siân White | | English
S. Kirk Elwood | | Economics


Students will stay at the Ridgemount Hotel, a small hotel located in London's Bloomsbury District and within walking distance of many of the city's prime attractions. The hotel provides daily breakfast and classroom space.

· Students will be allocated a weekly meal stipend to cover lunch and dinner on their own.

· Breakfast will be provided daily by the hotel.

· There will be occasional group lunches and dinners.

Additional Items to Consider

The Bloomsbury Group Seminar will complete the Honors Seminar requirement for (Track I and Track II) Honors Scholars.

Students will arrange and pay for their own air travel to and from London. They are responsible for their own passports. No books will need to be purchased. Program fees will cover at least: transportation to/from airport, hotel lodging (including daily full breakfast), weekly meal stipends, cell phones, bus/subway passes, costs and fees related to required events and venues, and group dinners, high tea, and a London theatre performance.

This program is only for first and second year honors students.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 3.25 and be a member of the JMU Honors Program.

First and second year students are eligible to apply. (At the time of program participation, students will be rising sophomores and rising juniors.)

All majors are welcome.

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($25 fee)
  • Short essay 
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU and first semester transfer students.

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in. 

apply now Closed for 2016

Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


HON 200: Special Topics in Honors: The Bloomsbury Group and Intellectual Life in early 20th-Century London (6 credits)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.