Learning to Love Language

Dr. Lynn Talbot, professor of Spanish, sees learning as a lifelong mission.

In fact, Talbot spent 10 years researching the lives of English novelist D.H. Lawrence and his wife, Frieda. Talbot was accompanied in this project by her husband, Dr. Michael Squires, emeritus professor of English at Virginia Tech. As a result, they published a double biography, Living at the Edge in 2002.

This love of learning also is evident in Talbot's teaching practices. In May 2001 Talbot taught an Intensive Learning course in northern Spain. Roanoke College students walked 275 miles of a pilgrimage trail while studying relevant literature. Talbot's goal is to combine literature, language, and culture and present it in an accessible manner to the visually-oriented computer generation.

"I want students to see language as living and fun … Learning a language helps move you away from the idea that your way of seeing the world is the only way," says Talbot.

Through a number of grants, Talbot has been able to focus on curriculum development, international study and research. Her work has led to articles in many professional journals as well as inspiring her to work on a Frieda Lawrence book. In addition to her research, Talbot has held leadership posts in organizations such as the Foreign Language Association of Virginia, and she continues to be active in many other professional organizations.