• About HS

    Humanities Spring is

    • A not-for-profit Italian arts and educational institute with home-base in Assisi, Italy, founded in 1991.
    • travel-study programs in Italy, The USA, and Great Britain
    • cooperative and collaborative learning
    • In-depth, site-specific experiential learning where art and literature, from classical to contemporary, come to life for students and become a part of their lives forever
    • a place where students read texts in their original language (Greek, Latin, English, and Italian) with the help of HS faculty and other students
    • a place where students learn to connect individually and constructively with great works of art and literature, from Homer and Giotto to Walt Whitman and the Brooklyn Bridge to Turner and Virgina Woolf.
    • a place where students learn to use nature and the great works of art and literature of the past and the present as a spring board for poems, sketches, journal entries, mini-compositions, and their own personal development
    • At HS we believe that great art and literature make students’ lives happier and more complete, help them to solve problems and to understand themselves better.

    Humanities Spring Home-Bases

    Humanities Spring home-bases include a schoolhouse in the hills outside Assisi, Italy, a villa in Paestum, Italy, the 92nd street “Y” in NYC, USA, and the Palmer’s Lodge Hostel in London, the Burtharlyp Howe Hostel in Grasmere, and the Old Schoolhouse Hostel Apartments in Edinburgh.

    Who we Are

    We are a not-for-profit cultural cooperative with a core group of teachers who sometimes teach in Assisi, sometimes in New York, sometimes London.  Last year, our Assisi staff, for example,  included Marinella Caputo, art historian and curator, Alessandra Pantella, archaeologist, Norman Maclean, painter and Classics-in-Translation and Art History teacher, and Marianna Costi, architect and photographer. Our teachers often wear different hats. Norman, for example, co-taught the Greek and Latin classes and did the landscape painting afternoon activity — a great success! Marianna, on the other hand (a former HSNY student), helped students with on-site sketching and photography last summer, and gave them a mini-course on architecture and how to read buildings, wherever we went.

    Our director, Jane R. Oliensis, got her degrees at Harvard and at Columbia in Classics and English, and has lectured on literary and classical subjects on both sides of the Atlantic. Ms. Oliensis is also a poet, and her poems have been published in both English and Italian.

    We are also all our wonderful students, many of whom eventually come back as staff. All our faculty is committed to the ongoing Humanities Spring conversation, which is brave enough to be critical and kind enough to be tolerant and which animates and opens up what we have read, seen, and experienced together.