College Life | 5 Courses Which Can Be Taught from Game of...

College Life | 5 Courses Which Can Be Taught from Game of Thrones

Here's a list of course connections from the Game of Thrones, for all students who are streaming and watching GOT online, as part of their college life.

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Imagine this happening at your class, on Monday morning, while you hide your phone and watch the released episode for season 7? (Image: BBC)
Imagine this happening at your class, on Monday morning, while you hide your phone and watch the released episode for season 7? (Image: BBC)

Back in class on Monday next week, on a back bench, secretly watching Game of Thrones online, after the episode drop in the morning? Well, you’re not alone! And if the way Monday mornings are laid out in college generally is – I’m not judging you at all. Few professors (and I don’t hate you either) take the time to ensure that college life is a treasured experience every day, every year.

However, when one of them uses these cues, these daily offerings of time and mind-space which we make at the altars of media and technology (yes I follow American Gods too), it serves two roles. It makes education relevant (or at least, comprehensible and even enjoyable) and ensures that your audience (humble, ‘captive’ students like us) are listening and remembering it.

Studying with Game of Thrones:

Here's how our professors can hook us back up into college life - through Game of Thrones.
Here’s how our professors can hook us back up into college life – through Game of Thrones.

So, here’s a list of doable connections that can be drawn from the Game of Thrones, for the benefit of all of those students who are streaming and watching GOT online or waiting for the next episode to drop to base every Tuesday. Even those who don’t (and those sinfully watching daily Hindi soaps or even Pretty Little Liars) can get the connection fairly well.

Game of Thrones and Political Science:

Reading Machiavelli, re-imagining his words as those from Tywin Lannister will lend it another flavour. (Image: HBO on Tumblr)
Reading Machiavelli, re-imagining his words as those from Tywin Lannister will lend it another flavour. (Image: HBO on Tumblr)

Countless studies have been made connecting the manner of the Game of Thrones narrative to political history, foreign policy, governance and administration (and mis-administration) and the importance of alliances that benefit most.

Instead of going into a lot of depth about the obvious references (on which I can write pages), here is a list of basic events and people and the lessons that can be built from them:

  • Machiavelli’s The Prince and Tywin Lannister
  • Wars for Freedom of Afghanistan, Iraq and Gulf vs Battles of Slavers Bay (Danerys in and around Mereen)
  • Scary Nature of Political Consultants (Varys, Petyr Baelish)
  • Relevance of Religion, caste and class cards in Politics (Melisandre, Sparrows, King’s Brotherhood and Free Folk)
  • Importance of Money in Political Success (Tyrell influence, Lannister gold)
  • Local issues will always dominate political fortunes

Game of Thrones and Creative Writing in English:

Have author-esque ambitions? Here is how you can learn from Game of Thrones. (Image: HBO)
Have author-esque ambitions? Here is how you can learn from Game of Thrones. (Image: HBO)

Creative writing, working on narratives and making the ones that stand-out is all about putting the focus on the most important and basic emotions to put in place. And it’s not greed, lust or fascination for gore – it’s empathy.

You care about the characters, roots for them to succeed without being taken down by their disabilities or disadvantages and are brought low when they lose.

Explore more of this in lesson-planning or writing assignments by taking these creative writing lessons from YouTuber JustWrite.

Other lessons you can learn from the show:

  • Character writing inspired by Game of Thrones
  • Plot building and complex narratives via Game of Thrones
  • Building a complex, complete multiverse

Game of Thrones and Linguistics:

Only a real cool professor can manage this class with ease. Does yours count? (Image: HBO)
Only a real cool professor can manage this class with ease. Does yours count? (Image: HBO)

The series and the book universe came with its own supportive languages – High Valerian and Dothraki. Inventing languages for a living may not be everyone’s cup of coffee, but a day’s lesson in language structure, grammar and etymylogy would suit everyone – from English Hons to foreign languages, linguistics to even programming languages.

Game of Thrones and World History:

Several historical parallels can be found in Game of Thrones.  (The Chive)
Several historical parallels can be found in Game of Thrones.
(The Chive)

Leave aside the obvious time period where the story is currently set (medieval Europe), the Game of Thrones has references ranging from Viking pillagings, Ice Age, Bronze Age, The Black Plague, European history, Mongol raiders, Scottish history and even (spoiler territory) the wars between the English and Spanish Armadas, for dominion over the Atlantic and the Americas.

Here are some of the references can be turned into engaging lessons:

  • The War of the 5 Kings vs War of the Roses
  • Battle of Blackwater vs Second Arab Siege of Byzantine Empire
  • Dothraki hordes and Mongol invaders across South Asia
  • Political marriages in all world history
  • Black Death / Plague vs Bloody Flux / Pale Mare of Mereen
  • American Civil War vs The Battle of The Bastards and Slavers Bay conquests in Mereen

Game of Thrones and Zoology:

Animal sigils in the Game of Thrones. (Image: Pinterest)
Animal sigils in the Game of Thrones. (Image: Pinterest)

Prehistoric references found in Game of Thrones – Dragons and mammoths – were all too real, albeit in different time periods. However, this is not the biggest reference for a good comparison class.

Meet the Direwolves! The adorable wolves of House Stark, each given to a Stark Child at the very beginning of the show series are not just an imagination that George R R Martin created from his brain – though the Direwolf scene is supposed to the first spark he wrote about the series. In real life, it is an extinct prehistoric carnivore, with a much-greater bite force, roaming North American lands nearly 10,000 years ago.

Keen on more college courses that can benefit your weekly GOT binges and GOT S7 watch online search queries? hold the thought for our part 2.

In the meantime, continue on the path of college life. And consider supplementing it with freelance gigs and opportunities, like virtual internships.

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