Death Comes for the Archbishop: Living the Book Literature

Living the Book

“In New Mexico, he always awoke a young man, not until he arose and began to shave did he realize that he was growing older. His first consciousness was a sense of the light dry wind blowing in through the windows, with the fragrance of hot sun and sage-brush and sweet clover; a wind that made one’s body feel light and one’s heart cry ‘To-day, to-day,’ like a child’s.”

Willa Cather, Death Comes for the Archbishop

In today’s anxious and hectic world, it’s hard to find quiet, and it’s easy to lose touch with our center. The fast pace of our individual lives and tumult of the greater world so often works against our ability to slow down and take care of ourselves. For centuries, New Mexico has been a place of healing, where writers, artists, and everyday people have ventured to find that slower pace and that present moment. In Death Comes for the Archbishop: Living the Book, we will seek that quiet place by exploring Willa Cather’s novel in community and with an exploration of the places where it actually happened. We will venture to many of the specific settings in the novel, walking in the characters’ footsteps as we discuss Cather’s prose, experience New Mexico’s dynamic culture and sweeping landscapes, and focus in on what it means to live an authentic life.

Open to educators of all disciplines, Death Comes for the Archbishop: Living the Book is a great course for those interested in exploring experiential education, place-based learning, historical and cultural context, and mindfulness practices.

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Course Faculty

Liz Friary

Liz Friary is an Upper School English teacher and Dean of Students at Santa Fe Prep. A native of Western Massachusetts, she earned her bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing at Trinity College and her master’s degree in Writing and the Teaching of Writing at Middlebury College’s Bread Loaf School of English. It was through Bread…

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