“Reading Walt Whitman in Tehran”
Christopher Merrill will discuss the University of Iowa’s first MOOC (Massive Open Online Course), which he co-developed with Whitman scholar and Roy J. Carver Professor of English Ed Folsom. The course covered Walt Whitman’s famous poem, Song of Myself, and ran for six weeks. In addition, Christopher is an ambitious world traveler, and has conducted cultural diplomacy missions in over 40 countries. He enjoys spreading and sharing the wisdom of Walt Whitman. Christopher Merrill is the Director of the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa. He is the author of multiple works of nonfiction, several edited volumes, and six collections of poetry. He led the initiative which resulted in Iowa City becoming a UNESCO City of Literature. He serves on the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO. In 2012, President Barack Obama appointed Merrill to the National Council on the Humanities.