Course Descriptions - Spring 2020

Video-conferencing of Spring 2020 courses: Of the courses listed below, thirteen continued using Zoom video-conferencing - to view, click here. The others were canceled, but some may be given in the Fall.

Course Descriptions - Spring 2020

Course descriptions are presented in alphabetical order by Course Leader (CL) last name.

Course Day and Time:  To find out when a course is being given, click on Course Schedule here or at the end of any course description.

Course codes also contain the day, period and course length information:

  • 1Tue, 2Wed, 3Thu designate the day the course is given (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, respectively);
  • In the middle field, 1, 2 or 3 stands for the period in which the course is given on that day;
  • In the rightmost field, 10, 8 and 5 stand for the course length in weeks; 5a or 5b means that the 5-week course is given in the first or second half of the semester, respectively.

Printable files of the Course List and Course Descriptions

For a printable file of the list of course leaders and titles, click here (2 pages).
For a printable file of all the course descriptions, click here (32 pages).


Course Descriptions: n the course-list table below, click on the CL name to go to that course description.

Course Leader
Course Title
 Course Code
Barbara Apstein
Hamlet: Prequels and Continuations
3Thu-2E-10
Suzanne Art
Luminaries: Five Superstars of the Art World
3Thu-1A-10
Bob Berlin
The World of Our Grandchildren: Can It Be Saved?
1Tue-3D-10
Donald Bermont
Brave New Worlds - Miracles, Wonders, and Uncertainties
1Tue-1C-5b
Jessica Bethoney
21 Lessons for the 21st Century
2Wed-2C-5b
James Boyd
Tai Chi: History, Philosophy, Practice and Benefits
1Tue-3B-5a
Victor Carrabino
The Human Quest Through Philosophy and Art
1Tue-2B-10
Arthur Finstein
Why Sing Plays? An Exploration of the Craft of Musical Theater
2Wed-1B-10
Alice Freedman
Selected Novellas: The Short and Sweet or Not So Sweet!
2Wed-2D-5a
Sandy Grasfield & Dana Kaplan
Robber Barons or Captains of Industry? Portraits from the Gilded Age
3Thu-2A-10
Margret Krakauer
Drawing For All
3Thu-2B-10
Margalit Lai
Who's Afraid of Atheism?
3Thu-3B-5b
Claire Levovsky Are Books and Movies Apples and Oranges?
 1Tue-3E-8
Carole Levy and Len Glassman
Great Decisions 2020: US Foreign Policy
3Thu-3A-8
Sheldon Lowenthal
World of Wine:  From Grape to Glass
1Tue-3C-5b
Sheldon Lowenthal
Waves of Technology and Human Outcomes
1Tue-2C-10
Richard Mansfield and Joe Bongiardina
Hot Button Issues in Policy and Politics
3Thu-1B-10
Carole and Mark McNamee
Unexpected Collusion: Modern Art and the Brain
1Tue-1B-5b
William Miniscalco
Democracy: Tumultuous Past, Dysfunctional Present, Uncertain Future
2Wed-2B-5a
David Mirsky  My Five Psychiatric Obsessions
3Thu-3C-5a
Martin Moser
Taking Photos with an iPhone
1Tue-2D-5a
Martin Nichols
American Dream or American Nightmare? Short Stories by George Saunders
1Tue-2A-10
Lois Novotny
Jane Austen Goes to the Movies
(2-period class on film-showing days, 1-period class on book discussion days)
2Wed-1A-8
Rabbi Bob Orkand
The Beginnings of Judaism
1Tue-3A-7b
Phillip Radoff
A Guided Tour of Mozart's Don Giovanni
3Thu-1C-5a
Myrna Rybczyk
Memoir Writing: One Story At A Time
2Wed-1C-10
Sandy Sherizen
Leading Issues in Crime and Criminal Justice
1Tue-1A-10
Marvin Snider
Richard Nixon - A Man Divided
3Thu-2C-10
Dorie Weintraub
"The Moderns" in Architecture, Interior and Furniture Design from 1925-1960
2Wed-2E-5b
Lane Williamson
The Remarkable History of Color
1Tue-1D-10
Maryann Wyner
LILAC Players   (No course fee) 2Wed-2F-5b
Lois Ziegelman
The 19th Century French Novel:  The Antihero
3Thu-2D-10


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3Thu-2E-10: Hamlet: Prequels and Continuations

Course Leader: Barbara Apstein

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

Since it was first performed around 1600, Hamlet has enthralled audiences and stimulated volumes of debate and commentary.  Shakespeare’s best-known tragedy has also inspired generations of writers, artists and filmmakers.  After exploring the medieval stories from which Shakespeare derived the plot, we’ll read excerpts from the play.  Then we’ll examine the work of writers who take the Hamlet drama of murder and revenge to new and fascinating creative paths.  In Gertrude and Claudius, John Updike re-images the central adulterous couple; Tom Stoppard’s play, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, sees the action through the eyes of two peripheral characters, and Ian McEwan’s witty Nutshell gives us a perspective like no other.

Most of the class will be devoted to discussion.  Approximately 2-3 hours of reading per week.

Books and Other Resources:

Shakespeare, Hamlet (any edition that includes line numbers)
John Updike, Gertrude and Claudius
Tom Stoppard, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead
Ian McEwan, Nutshell

Biography:

As a Professor of English at Bridgewater State University for 35 years, I taught a variety of authors, ranging from Chaucer to Jane Austen and Virginia Woolf, to undergraduates.  Now that I’m retired, I enjoy exploring new literary territory with adults, who bring so many insights gained from life experience to their reading.


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3Thu-1A-10: Luminaries: Five Superstars of the Art World

Course Leader: Suzanne Art

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

Every significant art movement has its share of superstars. I have chosen five luminaries from the 16th and 17th centuries: Raphael, Albrecht Durer, Caravaggio, Diego Velázquez and Rembrandt. Each of these artists reflects the highest aspirations of a particular artistic movement: Raphael: the High Italian Renaissance; Durer: the Northern Renaissance; Caravaggio: the early Baroque; Velázquez: the Spanish Golden Age; and Rembrandt: the Dutch Golden Age. 

In this course, we will explore the lives of each of these artists and the period in which he lived. We will examine their major works and discover how these reflect not only the contemporary artistic trends but also the social, economic, and political currents of the times. We will discuss the application of various types of artistic media, and we will note how one major artistic movement gradually evolves into another. We will also trace the influence of a given artist upon the works of those who came later. 

There will be a combination of presentation and class discussion.  Approximately 1.5 hours of preparation time expected.

Books and Other Resources:

All assignments will be online. These will include brief biographical articles as well as videos on specific works of art.

Biography:

I have always loved art and history. My favorite pastime is “experiencing” the paintings in art museums. I have a BA in History, an MA in the French Language and Literature, and an MA in Teaching. I taught history for 16 years at a private school. During that time, I also wrote a series of twelve history books, a major feature of which is the study of art in a given culture. I have taught six art history courses at LLAIC.


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1Tue-3D-10: The World of Our Grandchildren: Can It Be Saved?

Course Leader: Bob Berlin

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 3

Course Description:

Three of the growing environmental dangers that will drastically alter life in the future are:
  • Climate change brought about by human activity.
  • Unmanaged disposal of high volumes of domestic, industrial, and agricultural wastes and chemicals, and the resultant contamination of air, water, and land.
  • Loss of biodiversity and species migration and extinction.
  • The threat to mankind’s future stems not only from the changes induced by each of these dangers individually, but also through the cascading effects of their interaction. Failure on the part of nations to address these issues accelerates the potential irreversible damage that future generations will face.
We will start with the evidence of worldwide climate variations from their historical patterns and how these changes relate to both human activity and natural causes. We will consider man-made causes of climate variation, especially the sources and impacts of greenhouse gases. We will examine the now-observable effects of climate change and what the future will bring. In addition, we will discuss the status of promising developments in alternatives to the use of fossil fuels, including renewables and other clean energy sources.

The second part of the course will focus on the growing, world-wide problem of the safe disposal of waste material --including the lack of availability of sites for municipal waste, the pollution of our oceans with plastics and other contaminants, the danger of storing hazardous wastes in surface impoundments, and the impact of industrial and farm operations on the environment. We will consider the status of ongoing programs to clean up sites of past contamination.

We will then turn to the accelerating destabilization and extermination of critical species, the impact of species migration on native biota, and the causes and potential mitigating measures.  In addition to the environmental impacts, we will also consider the geopolitical, economic, and demographic effects of these dangers.

Each class will begin with a look at relevant material from the week’s news. The class format will combine facilitator presentations with class participation. Weekly preparation should take an hour or less.

Books and Other Resources:

There are no required books. The Course Leader will provide participants with a set of notes.

Biography:

I was originally trained as an engineer, developing advanced energy systems.  My work became environmentally oriented after I obtained a doctorate in public health.  I worked in the environmental and energy fields for over 50 years, both in the private and government sectors, and also taught these subjects at the undergraduate and graduate levels. I am a licensed professional engineer, health physicist, reactor operator, and the coauthor of Radioactive Waste Management.


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1Tue-1C-5b: Brave New Worlds - Miracles, Wonders, and Uncertainties

Course Leader: Donald Bermont

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on April 14

Course Description:

I enjoyed leading this course last fall.  I expect that by April, everything will be different.  What will life be like here in beautiful Massachusetts in the Spring of 2025, 2030, 2040?  What changes will occur in the fields of medicine, technology, agriculture, and space exploration?  We will examine the possible changes in our climate, world trade, immigration and governments.  The class will look at what many experts are predicting, and we will discuss how likely it is that these things will really happen.  Is this what we want?  What can we do to cope with the changes?  What kind of lives will our children and grandchildren lead?  What skills will they need to survive and flourish?  What can we be doing now for ourselves?  Much of what is coming seems marvelous and exciting.  Some of it seems frightening and uncontrolled.  Can we anticipate some of the unexpected consequences?

The format will include both lecture and discussion.  Approximately 2 hours of reading articles outside of class is expected.   (Since the course will contain new material, students who took the course previously are also welcome to sign up.)

Books and Other Resources:

Students will need to be able to access links to articles, and receive and send emails.

Biography:

I taught this course this fall and I found that the discussions were provocative and enlightening. I expect that this time may supersede that.

 I became interested in these topics during the last ten of my thirty-five years working as a Psychologist in Lowell.  I became frustrated with the lack of progress in the efficiency and effectiveness of psychological treatments.  I did research and delivered a few papers about how the use of Artificial Intelligence and other technologies could be used to greatly assist in the discovering, diagnosing and treating mental health issues. I was pleased, but not surprised, by the strong degree of resistance I was met with.  Change is difficult, even for Psychologists.


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2Wed-2C-5b: 21 Lessons for the 21st Century

Course Leader: Jessica Bethony

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on April 22

Course Description:

How do we live in an age when the old political and religious stories that shape our reality have collapsed?  How do we deal with a future that portends ecological disaster, technological disruption, and brave-new-world biotechnology?  These are the challenges that Yuval Harari, author of the global best seller, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, provocatively and insightfully grapples with in his latest book, 21 Lessons for the 21st Century.

During our five-week class we will explore some specific tensions that Harari poses (technological and political challenges, despair and hope, truth and post-truth, and resilience and meaning).  We will discuss how humanity, and each of us personally, might confront these disconcerting and disorienting changes.

Weekly preparation should take about 2 hours.

Books and Other Resources:

21 Lessons for the 21st Century,  by Yuval Harari.  Penguin/Random House, 2018

Biography:

I am a professor at Bunker Hill Community College, and have two masters’ degrees – one in intellectual history from Brandeis University and the other from Tufts University in counseling psychology.  Though officially retired from my full-time position, I continue to teach culturally related honors seminars at Bunker Hill Community.  I have also taught courses at lifelong learning programs at Brandeis and Regis. One of my prior courses focused on evolutionary anthropology using Yuval Harari’s book, Sapiens, as the text.


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1Tue-3B-5a: Tai Chi: History, Philosophy, Practice and Benefits

Course Leader: James Boyd

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on March 3

Course Description:

This class is presented as an introduction to the history, philosophy, practice, and benefits of Tai Chi We will cover its earliest formulations as passed down from the classics of Chinese literature and history to the elusive master Zhang SanFeng of the Song dynasty.  In the early 19th century, the Chen family of HeNan province had refined the ancient martial art into a style of exercises for self-defense and they tried to keep it secret.  From these seeds, the secret art that was passed on to the Chinese people and the world become known as TaiJiQuan.  

Each class will introduce a series of Tai Chi exercises designed to open energy paths in the body and stimulate the flow of Qi.  These exercises will allow participants to experience some of the benefits of daily Tai Chi practice.

No preparation is required, but students may choose to practice some of the exercises at home.

Books and Other Resources:

None

Biography:

I was the Dean of Faculty at Franklin Institute of Boston for 20 years.  In 1971 I began TaiJi and learned the main form. After practicing meditation and yoga, in 2002 I resumed my study of TaiJi with SiFu Chu JinSoon.  I have found that daily TaiJi/QiGong practice has produced profound physical and psychological effects, especially calm and strength for my body and mind and an overall feeling of wellness.


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1Tue-2B-10: The Human Quest Through Philosophy and Art

Course Leader: Victor Carrabino

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 3

Course Description:

As a result of the French Revolution, a new artistic and intellectual revolution took place, which welcomed a desire for freedom and liberalism as opposed to the constraint of rules and regulations from the past.   This course will serve as an introduction to the western intellectual and artistic output from the Romantic era to the present.   We will consider the ideas of key intellectual figures from this period, alongside concurrent developments in literature, music and art. 

We will leave the world of reason and enter the world of emotions and individualism.  As we juxtapose the philosophical vision of Voltaire with that of Rousseau, we will put aside the world of objectivity and enter the world of subjectivity.  

Starting with Romanticism, we will trace the various stages of man’s cultural heritage that underscore the meaning of “humanities.”  Among the key figures we will briefly encounter are: the philosophers Voltaire, Kant, Marx, and Sartre; the artists: Constable, Turner, Monet, Renoir, Picasso, and Henri Moore; the writers Wordsworth, Keats, Dickinson, and Camus; and the musicians Verdi, Debussy and Ravel.  We will also explore existentialism, a philosophical movement often misunderstood and erroneously quoted.  

The class will consist of lectures and discussions.  Weekly preparation should take about 2 hours.

Books and Other Resources:

The Course Leader will provide notes and other materials.

Biography:

I am an Emeritus Professor of The Florida State University where I taught throughout my teaching career.  I earned my PhD in French from the University of Massachusetts Five-College-PhD-Program, where I taught French language and literature and Humanities.  I was appointed Resident Director of the Florida State University Study Abroad Program in Florence, Italy, my native country.  During twenty years of residency in Florence, my study of humanities was strengthened by the rich artistic surrounding Florence offers.  While living in Florence, I also taught Humanities courses for Pepperdine University and New York University.  My publications are indicative of my interest in finding the golden thread that runs through any artistic expression.          


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2Wed-1B-10: Why Sing Plays? An Exploration of the Craft of Musical Theater

Course Leader: Arthur Finstein

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 4

Course Description:

Great musical theater can move you to your core!  In this class, we will focus on three major American musicals:  My Fair Lady, Fiddler on the Roof, and Into the Woods.  Each of these masterpieces musicalizes its subject matter differently.  All three rely on bedrock compositional principles established long ago in the world of opera and operetta.  After learning about the basic tenets of musical storytelling, we will examine each show by focusing on the purposes, placement, structures, and styles of its songs.  We will discover how the creators' musical choices sharpen characters and plot and deepen the play's impact. 

The class will consist of presentations by the leader and group listening/viewing, discussion, and reading. There will be no student reports, and no musical or theatrical skills are expected.  

Books and Other Resources:

Scripts / recordings of My Fair Lady and Shaw's Pygmalion are widely available in public libraries.  Any edition is acceptable.
Fiddler... is similarly widely accessible, and available in paperback for very modest amounts through Amazon or other booksellers.
Into the Woods is published by the Theatre Communications Group and is available through the Minuteman Library system of Massachusetts (minlib.net) as well as on Amazon and other mass sellers, and I will very likely provide at least relevant excerpts from it via email attachments. 
Other resources will be suggested in class communications, but not required.
The Course Leader will provide other readings as needed via email.

Biography:

I’ve loved, performed, and studied musical theater for nearly my entire life.  Having received BA and MFA degrees in Music from Brandeis, I’ve spent 32 years as a Massachusetts Music Educator.  I’ve music-directed more than 200 productions in the greater Boston scholastic, community, and professional theater circuits for over 45+ years.  Presenting at statewide, regional, and national conferences on Music and Theater Education, I’m a passionate advocate for increased support for the creative arts, especially for music and musical theater.


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2Wed-2D-5a: Selected Novellas:  The Short and Sweet or Not So Sweet!

Course Leader: Alice Freedman

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on March 4

Course Description:

A world-class chess player, a person taking on another’s identity, a man who howls like a wolf, a person facing his demise, and a man who won’t stop at anything to get a new coat – these are the topics of our selected readings. The novella, usually about 150 pages long, is a form of fiction that is shorter than a novel and longer than a short story and has only one plot line.  We will read five novellas - a mixture of classical and contemporary works.  By examining the themes, characters, plots, writing styles, tone, and language, we will gain greater understanding and appreciation of each author’s writing skill.  In addition, we will relate the ideas expressed in each novella to our individual lives and today’s societal challenges. 

The class formats will include a combination of presentation and discussion. Weekly preparation will take several hours, depending on reading speed.

Books and Other Resources:
  • The Overcoat, by Nicolai Gogol
  • The Tenth Man, by Graham Greene
  • Train Dreams, by Denis Johnson
  • The Death of Ivan Ilyich, by Leo Tolstoy
  • The Chess Story, by Stefan Zweig
Biography:

I am a LLAIC board member and course leader. I have twice taught a course on the selected works of Ian McEwan.  After starting my career as a high school English teacher, I became a specialist in Organizational Development and Learning at Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates.  I have a B.A. in English Literature from Boston University and an M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Boston College.  Discussing literature with other readers and finding its relevance to today’s world brings me much joy.


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3Thu-2A-10: Robber Barons or Captains of Industry? Portraits from the Gilded Age

Course Leader: Sandy Grasfield & Dana Kaplan

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

How much can change in 35 years? If you look at the US from 1865-1900, the period known as the Gilded Age, almost everything. America transformed from a war-ravaged federation of states into the most powerful country in the world. The world we live in now—for better or worse—was shaped during this period of astonishing growth and productivity. How did this happen? More importantly, who were the “movers and shakers?” What did we gain and what did we lose?
While the course will look at economics, politics, and technology, we will bring the focus down to a more human scale, by looking at some of the key individuals who created the history. In a series of “portraits,” we will profile some of the famous “robber barons,” like Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller and J. P. Morgan, who drove the industrial expansion and left their mark on America’s cities and towns, most particularly New York.

But we will also discuss artists and writers, socialites, suffragettes, and a few notable villains. We will explore the world of immigrants as well as the gilded world and conspicuous consumption of the super-rich.

The course will feature a combination of lectures, biographical sketches, and group discussion, with audio-visual support, including slides and YouTube videos. Each week participants will receive suggested readings (online or as pdfs) and recommended videos.

1 to 1-1/2 hours of suggested readings and/or viewing of videos will be expected.

Books and Other Resources:

PDFs or Word documents of book excerpts will be provided, and URLs for on-line readings and videos

Biography:

Sandy Grasfield: I was a middle school librarian and media specialist for thirty years. I have taught several courses at LLAIC and elsewhere, including The History and Politics of Food, The Plays and Memoirs of Lillian Hellman, and Great Photographs and Photographers of the Depression Era

Dana and I have presented two successful courses focused on mystery novels. We also ran a monthly summer book group, “Food and Memories,” focused on culinary memoirs.

Dana Kaplan: I had a varied career as a marketing and sales promotional writer and manager of creative teams. My focus was business-to-business. Among the companies I worked for were Honeywell, Digital Equipment Corporation, Duke Energy and PricewaterhouseCoopers. My greatest regret is not studying a history curriculum at university, and I have been making up for it since then.


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3Thu-2B-10: Drawing For All

Course Leader: Margret Krakauer

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

In a world of technology and electronic media, drawing remains a unique and wonderful activity.  If you’ve ever wondered if you can draw, or even if you have previously experimented with it, "Drawing for All” be the class for you.  Learning to draw begins with seeing in a new and more focused way. With the aid of simple tools and through a series of exercises, our hands can learn to express what we see.  This class is for beginners, but it is also open to anyone who has had previous experience.  Throughout the semester, students will explore the various principles and techniques of drawing, starting with basic lines and shapes and moving on to more complex drawings that reflect volume and mood.  There will also be time to work on long-term individual projects. 

For the most part, drawing materials are inexpensive, and students will work with a set of graded graphite pencils, erasers, and good quality paper.  I will buy materials for those students who are beginners and do not have any supplies, which should cost about $30.  Because of limitations of available and appropriate space, students cannot use any medium that is messy, such as charcoal, pastels, and paints. 

Books and Other Resources:

None

Biography:

I have advanced degrees in biology and social work, but started painting almost 40 years ago when my children were quite young.  Most of my study was with the late world-renowned Wayland artist George Dergalis. I have been teaching privately and publicly through the Wayland Recreation Department for 30 years.  For 15 years, I taught drawing courses for children at a summer Arts Workshop with potter Phyllis Biegun. 


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3Thu-3B-5b: Who's Afraid of Atheism?

Course Leader: Margalit Lai

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on April 16

Course Description:

Today many people -- about 30% of Americans – are turning away from formal religion, are unaffiliated, or consider themselves atheists.   What is it about atheism that causes people to distrust atheists?  What makes people believe in the unbelievable?  Why are there so many religions all of which are convinced they have the answers?  This course is designed for both believers and nonbelievers who will have the opportunity to participate in respectful discussions on the most fundamental questions of our existence such as “Is there a God?”.   We’ll read Richard Dawkins’ book, The God Delusion.

The course will be mainly discussion.   Reading approximately 70 pages per week is expected.

Books and Other Resources:

The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2006. Available on Amazon

Biography:

I grew up in Israel in an atheist family.  My only nephew became a born-again Jew in his late twenties. He lives his life strictly by the book, and we don’t agree on anything related to religion. Yet, we have a close and good relationship and love to debate issues related to religion. We both know deep down that we will not be able to change each other’s ingrained beliefs but that does not stop us from trying and having a good time doing so.


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1Tue-3E-8: Are Books and Movies Apples and Oranges?


Course Leader: Claire Levovsky

Course Length/Start: 8 weeks starting on March 3

Course Description:

Stories are an essential part of every human culture; they help us to make meaning and to understand ourselves, each other, and our place in the world.  The means by which these stories are told — whether they are written, spoken, or acted on stage or screen — influences the way we approach and interpret them.  Film, while it may be influenced by written work, should always be considered an entirely unique piece of art for the purposes of critique and analysis.  This course explores the complex interplay between film and literature.  Selected novels are analyzed in relation to film versions of the same works in order to gain an understanding of the possibilities — and problems.

During this eight-week course, we will deal with the following books and films:

    Defending Jacob by William Landay;       “Defending Jacob”
    My Abandonment by Peter Rock;            “Leave No Trace”
    Winter’s Bone by Daniel Woodrell;          “Winter’s Bone”
    Call Me by Your Name by Andre Aciman; “Call Me by Your Name"

Books and Other Resources:
  • William Landay, Defending Jacob, Delacorte Press, 2012
  • Peter Rock, My Abandonment, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009
  • Daniel Woodrell, Winter’s Bone, Little Brown & Co., 2006
  • Andre Aciman, Call Me by Your Name, Farrar, Strauss & Giroux, 2007
Biography:

I taught at Fisher College from 1992 - 2015, at the Taunton, New Bedford, and Brockton Hospital School of Nursing campuses.  I have taught Expository Writing, Literature and the Critical Essay, Children’s Literature, Literature and Film, Ethics, The American Short Story, The American Novel, Introduction to Psychology, Business Communication, and Public Speaking.  I am Certified as a Rehabilitation Counselor and as a Secondary School Instructor.


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3Thu-3A-8: Great Decisions 2020: US Foreign Policy

Course Leader: Carole Levy and Len Glassman

Course Length/Start: 8 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

The Great Decisions course, taught throughout the United States in various venues, is prepared by the Foreign Policy Association.  It includes eight topics of current concern and interest to the conduct of US foreign policy. The association prepares a reading booklet (which each course participant will purchase) and a DVD (provided by the leaders) of interviews and explanations of the subject given by foreign policy experts.  Each class will begin with a 25-minute video, followed by discussion.  We will augment the provided materials with relevant current events as they appear in our media and any personal knowledge of or experience.  The topics this year will include Climate Change and the Global Order, Red Sea Security, and Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking.  (You can look at the Foreign Policy Association’s website to see all the topics.)  If you are an avid follower of international news and foreign policy, this is a course you will greatly enjoy!

The format includes videos, lecture, and discussion.

Books and Other Resources:

Foreign Policy Association publication: Great Decisions Topics 2020
Order online or contact sales at 1 (800) 477-5836 or sales@fpa.org

Biography:

Carol Levy:  After a career as an educator teaching high school English and History, I now have the opportunity to expand my learning and share my interests by being active in lifelong learning for adults.  I enjoy the study of history and literature and have led several courses on literature and on Israel where I lived from 1970 to 1983.  This is the second time I will lead the Great Decisions at LLAIC (each year the topics change).  I have a B.A. from Penn State University and an MBA in management of not-for-profit organizations from the Heller School at Brandeis University.  I enjoy reading, tennis, biking, travel, yoga and spending time with my six grandchildren.

Len Glassman:  I am a native-born Bostonian and graduated with a B.S. from Northeastern University. As a fifty-year manufacturer and distributor of automobile and truck parts, I was president and co-owner of Hampton Sales Corporation.  My wife and I presently own and run Big Fish Products which sells our unique design tee shirts and baseball caps.  We donate all proceeds to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s disease research. I am a lifelong history and political buff.


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1Tue-3C-5b: World of Wine:  From Grape to Glass

Course Leader: Sheldon Lowenthal

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on April 14

Course Description:

Explore the world of wine from ancient history to modern times! Discover the processes used to create dry, sweet, fortified, and sparkling wine. Get an understanding of terroir, and how it affects wine production around the world. From the comfort of our chairs we’ll take virtual visits to wineries, learning where to travel locally and how to plan a wine vacation. You’ll discover why some varietals thrive only in certain areas while others can be grown throughout the world. Each session we’ll learn how to taste and describe the characteristics of different wines, comparing different grape varietals and different producers of the same varietals. We’ll get to taste wine with different flavors of food to see how its taste is affected, and how the combination is better than its parts. You’ll leave with a better appreciation of wine, the ability to select an appropriate wine for your menu, and the tools for developing your own value system for rating wine quality.

Please bring $30 in cash to the first session to cover the cost of variety of wines you’ll be tasting during the course. Tastings will consist of six or seven different bottles and different grape varietals.  No weekly preparation is needed.

Books and Other Resources:

None

Biography:

I have degrees in Electrical Engineering from MIT and RPI and have been developing products and managing large teams until 2015. I created and delivered classes to my managers to ensure high performance and to customers at trade shows. My wife and I have spent the last 19 years learning and appreciating great wine, visiting wineries around the world, and collecting wines. I would like to share his love of wine with the community.


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1Tue-2C-10: Waves of Technology and Human Outcomes

Course Leader: Sheldon Lowenthal

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 3

Course Description:

Technology continues to improve the lives of humans.  It has changed the lives of our ancestors, from low life expectancy and lives of drudgery to the highest life expectancy, with leisure taking most of our time.  Topics will include advances in language and communication, agriculture, transportation, energy, and medicine.  We will explore how humans managed to go from hunting, gathering, and feeding a very small population in good times to feeding 7.5 billion people and their animals.  We will follow human wandering and dragging belongings to the discovery of the wheel, seafaring, and mechanical machinery that allowed rapid movement.  

The class will be a mix of lecture and discussion, based on materials presented and questions. No computer skills are needed; no preparation time is required.

Books and Other Resources:

None are required.

Biography:

I have degrees in Electrical Engineering from MIT and RPI and have developed computer products until 2015.  I have created and delivered classes to my managers to ensure high performance and to customers at trade shows.  I have always enjoyed reading about technology and have personally experienced the waves of technology in my work life.  I have previously offered this course at the Tufts Osher and LLAIC lifelong learning programs.


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3Thu-1B-10: Hot Button Issues in Policy and Politics

Course Leader: Richard Mansfield and Joe Bongiardina

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

For each session we will select an issue in foreign or domestic policy or in political strategy and assign several essays analyzing the issue from different points of view. We will select topics that are likely to arise in debates leading up to the 2020 election. The topics and essays will be largely the same as those used in this course in the Fall of 2019, and will likely include: the Democratic candidates, America’s Polarized Politics, Immigration, Identity Politics, the Future of Democracy, Race in American politics, U.S. Foreign Policy, and Policy Toward North Korea, and Threats from the Internet and Social Media.

This course will enable you to become a knowledgeable conversationalist about policy and politics in the months leading up to the 2020 election. For each class we will assign three to five recent articles drawn from magazines such as Foreign Affairs, The Atlantic Monthly, Commentary, and The New Republic, as well as major newspapers such as the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal.  In each class session, one of the facilitators will summarize an article’s key points, pose questions for class discussion, and repeat this process for the other articles.

Books and Other Resources:

The course leaders will provide articles from magazines and newspapers.

Biography:

Joe Bongiardina: I have long been interested in political science and affairs.  My first career was in the US Army in the Adjutant General’s Corps; I then moved to Wang Laboratories in human resource management and organizational consulting.  After that, I worked 13 years as an independent management and human resource development consultant.  I developed HR systems, such as performance management and succession planning and was heavily engaged in improving organization effectiveness through management and executive development, quality improvement, job search and selection training for managers.

Richard Mansfield: I have co-taught several LLAIC courses on contemporary issues. I have co-taught other LLAIC courses on topics in psychology, sociology and education. For 40 years I have been a consultant specializing in the assessment of organizations, leaders and job requirements. In my first professional career l taught human development, educational psychology and statistics at Temple University. 


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1Tue-1B-5b: Unexpected Collusion: Modern Art and the Brain

Course Leader: Carole and Mark McNamee

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on April 14

Course Description:

Modern art and brain science surprisingly use a common strategy —reductionism— to translate visual images into meaningful experiences.   Reductionism is the process of breaking down complex phenomena into discrete elements, each of which can be analyzed and understood in detail and then re-assembled into a meaningful whole.  

In this 5-week course, an artist and a neuroscientist will each show how closely the elements of abstract modern art, featuring lines, shapes, color, texture, and movement, map onto the process by which the brain breaks down all visual images (whether “real” or “abstract”) into the same elements before reassembling them into a coherent perception. The brain also draws on memories and emotions when re-assembling each image, thus enabling each individual to have a unique reaction to realistic or abstract visual images.  

This course is inspired by Nobel Prize-winning neuroscientist Eric Kandel’s book, Reductionism in Art and Brain Science.   In addition to his research on learning and memory, Kandel is an avid art collector and a student of art history. He provides a vivid example of how closely the arts and the sciences can converge to bridge the two cultures. 

Topics to be covered through lectures, demonstrations, and discussion include the history and emergence of modern abstract art, the reductionist elements exploited by artists, the neurobiology of visual processing, the role of memory and emotions in enriching visual perceptions, and the next frontiers of brain science and the arts.  

This course does not presume any prior study of either brain science or abstract art and no outside reading is required.   

Books and Other Resources:

No book required, but the Kandel book is recommended

Kandel E. R.  Reductionism in Art and Brain Science: Bridging the Two Cultures, Columbia University Press, New York, 2016.

Biography:

Carole McNamee:  I am a practicing artist with a focus on mixed-media abstract art and book arts.  Having a Ph.D. in both Computer Science and Marriage and Family Therapy, I am a former university professor of computer science and a retired practitioner and research professor focused on the use of the expressive arts as a therapeutic modality. 

Mark McNamee:  I am a Ph. D. neuroscientist and former university professor and administrator.  My research focuses on the role of nerve and muscle proteins involved in the transmission of nerve signals.

We have both taken and taught courses at LLAIC.  We will be teaching this course for the second time this spring.


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2Wed-2B-5a: Democracy: Tumultuous Past, Dysfunctional Present, Uncertain Future

Course Leader: William Miniscalco

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on March 4

Course Description:

In the past decade democracies around the world have been weakening or failing due to a loss of faith in democratic institutions that leads to an upsurge in populism and a drift towards authoritarianism.  Is this the result of unavoidable external circumstances such as large-scale immigration and economic forces, or has democracy been oversold as the optimum political system?  Is democracy a durable form of government or just a hothouse flower that can thrive only in a special environment?  Has there ever been a true democracy?

We will examine what democracy means to different people and how it has evolved over the millennia.  What are the reasons (some) people believe that it is a good form of government and under what circumstances does it work?  We will look at problems with democracy in the US, including an electorate that is largely ignorant of how the government operates and the policy issues being addressed.  Lastly, we will consider the reasons democracies are unraveling around the world and what can be done to save it.

The course will consist of lectures, slides, videos, and class discussion.

Books and Other Resources:

Relevant articles for each class will be emailed to students.

Biography:

I am a retired physical scientist with a broad range of non-scientific interests.  Even when engaged in scientific research and development I pursued numerous “personal projects” that involved studies of literature, history, psychology, and major human-generated concepts such as religion.  I classify myself as a professional dilettante.


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3Thu-3C-5a: My Five Psychiatric Obsessions

Course Leader: David Mirsky

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

This course will focus on five topics that have captivated my professional energy. The topics for the first three sessions are psychiatric diagnoses that continue to generate concern and controversy despite advances in their treatment.

  • Autism and its less serious relative, Asperger’s syndrome, may involve mild to serious problems in interpersonal functioning.
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) can afflict many bright and gifted people and limit their ability to contribute to their fullest potential. An ADHD diagnosis may rescue a child from stigmatizing, punitive responses but leave lifelong problems unaddressed.
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been attracting media interest and more federal money because of long overdue attention to the psychological scars of veterans of recent wars, but scarring trauma is an element of daily life for countless others in domestic “battlefields,” generating major mental health problems.
The topics for the last two sessions are social problems of interest to me and many other psychiatrists.
  • Adolescence - the period when biological and societal imperatives collide, and an individual’s lifelong course will be determined
  • Asylum and “The Other”-The history of the treatment of the mentally ill is a painful metaphor for the plight of excluded groups throughout history and the popular (often tragic) ”solutions” such as eugenics and related immigration restrictions”
The class will consist of both lectures and discussion.  Approximately 1-2 hours of preparation time per week expected.

Books and Other Resources:

Look me in the Eye, by John Robison. In addition, the CL may provide copies of several articles

Biography:

A product of the South Bronx (see Ogden Nash; “The Bronx; No Thonks”) and educated at Bard College and Western Reserve School of Medicine, I pursued (an aborted) residency in neurology in New York and then spent two years in England, working for the National Health Service in two innovative psychiatric hospitals (Claybury and the Marlborough Day). As a medical student, I spent two summers at Charenton Hospital, the Parisian equivalent of Bellevue, but with a long history of humane care for the “aliénés,“ as patients were called, and the last refuge of the Marquis de Sade (see Peter Brooks’ play, “The Marat Sade”). I completed my adult and child psychiatry training in Boston and have spent the subsequent decades working in community mental health programs in Massachusetts and teaching in medical and nursing schools.  Mentors, colleagues and patients have illuminated my path, along with the insights of Sigmund Freud, Dante Alighieri, Marcel Proust, Michel de Montaigne and, most recently, Bill Griffith (“Zippy” in the Boston Globe) -- “outsiders” all, and exemplars of the compassionate life.


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1Tue-2D-5a: Taking Photos with an iPhone

Course Leader: Martin Moser

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on March 3

Course Description:

As long as you have your iPhone, you can take a picture and see it immediately.  Photos are instantly stored on your phone where they can be organized by date, person, pet, and place.  The goal of this course is for participants to develop the skills and confidence to take photographs with an iPhone.

We will begin by reviewing the photography features of the phone.  Next, participants will learn how to evaluate a photo.  We will cover composition, lighting, cropping, coloration, focusing, converting to black and white, portraiture, etc.  Finally, participants will learn how to improve their photos by using photo editing tools.

During the week, participants will practice taking pictures which we will share and discuss in class.

Preparation involves 2-3 hours per week, taking and editing photos on an iPhone and watching instructional videos on the web

Books and Other Resources:

An iPhone

Biography:

I am a retired business professor from the University of Massachusetts and an amateur photographer.  I only use my iPhone for my photography.  My photographs have won several awards, including photo of the year at the Gateway Camera Club in Framingham.  It’s exciting for me to use 21st century technology and teach others how to do the same!


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1Tue-2A-10: American Dream or American Nightmare? Short Stories by George Saunders

Course Leader: Martin Nichols

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 3

Course Description:

George Saunders surveys modern-day America and finds a dark underbelly to the American Dream.  His stories are surreal, disturbing and very funny.  This author includes amongst those who have influenced his writing the great Russian authors of the 19th and 20th centuries and Groucho Marx, George Carlin and Monty Python. He asks why we have become a country that is so harsh to those who are losing and cares so little if someone fails.  Saunders has won numerous short story awards, a MacArthur “genius” Fellowship, and the Man Booker Prize.  This will not be a lecture course; class members will be expected to participate in lively discussions facilitated by the class leader. Our focus will be on the effectiveness of the stories as both literature and social commentary.  I invite you to experience and discuss this ferocious but humane voice in contemporary American fiction. 


Approximately 2-2.5 hours of reading per week. 
Consumer Warning  Some of the stories may result in the urge to mix a very tall, stiff drink.

Books and Other Resources:

CivilWarLand in Bad Decline      
In Persuasion Nation
Pastoralia
Tenth of December

The above George Saunders’ story collections are all available through the Minuteman Library System.  Any edition will be fine.  I have arranged the sequence of readings to make it easy to borrow each book with a single visit to the library. 
Used copies of the books are available on Amazon for approximately $6 each, including shipping.  Since we will be reading only one story in CivilWarLand in Bad Decline, I am prepared to send an electronic copy of this story as an Adobe acrobat document attachment via email to anyone who requests it.

For half of the classes, I will send links via email to internet websites for supplementary readings.  These will be considered optional reading for those who have the time and interest.

Biography:

I did my undergraduate study at Yale and received my graduate dental degree from Harvard.  I was an Army dentist for two years and then had a private practice in suburban Boston.  I have been involved with lifetime learning programs for over 20 years as a student, a member of various committees, and as a class leader.  I have led courses and discussion groups on contemporary short fiction and national and international affairs.  This will be my sixth course for LLAIC.


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2Wed-1A-8: Jane Austen Goes to the Movies

Course Leader: Lois Novotny

Course Length/Start: 8 weeks starting on March 4
(2-period class on film-showing days, 1-period class on book discussion days)

Course Description:

Jane Austen’s novels have proved irresistible to film makers.  This course will look at four of her novels—Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Emma, and Persuasion in both the original novel and film versions to see how and what changed in the transition from book to screen.  

The format of the course will be a single period to discuss the book; the following week will be a double period to view the movie.  If there is time, we may be able to look at portions of the wonderful multi-part TV adaptations of some of the novels. Since the movies are generally little more than two hours, there should be time to discuss our reactions to how the novel has been adapted for the screen.  

Time to read the four novels over eight weeks will depend on each person’s reading pace.

Books and Other Resources:

Jane Austen Books:  Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Emma, and Persuasion.  (Any version of the books).

Biography:

Although I have taught music-related courses at LLAIC, my background is in the general humanities with an undergraduate degree in English Literature.  I have long been a fan of Jane Austen, both her books and the film versions, and look forward to exploring how the movies adapted, perhaps changed, the novels.


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1Tue-3A-7b: The Beginnings of Judaism

Course Leader: Rabbi Bob Orkand

Course Length/Start: 7 weeks starting on March 24 (fourth week of the semester)

Course Description:

How did Judaism develop from its biblical roots to the highly developed system we know today? What has changed—and what has remained constant? 

The roots of Judaism reach back to the Hebrew Bible—also known as the Old Testament by Christians. For thousands of years, Jews have looked to these scriptures for their origins, and have located in them the tenets of their faith. Though Jews of every generation have recognized and cherished the Bible as the ultimate source of all Jewish existence, much of what is recognized today as Judaism does not appear in the Bible.

In this course, participants will explore how the Jewish faith struggled to continually redefine itself during the first thousand years after the completion of the last books of the Hebrew Bible, tenaciously clinging to existence through circumstances that might logically have marked its end. This course explores the evolution of an ancient faith into a system of beliefs, practices, and laws recognizable today as Judaism. 

The class format will be lecture with opportunities for questions.

Books and Other Resources:

There are no required readings, but a bibliography of suggested readings will be provided.

Biography:

I retired from the pulpit rabbinate in 2013 after a career spanning more than 40 years, with the last 31 in Westport, CT.  I also served congregations in Florida and Illinois.  I have taught adult learning courses at LLAIC, Temple Beth Elohim in Wellesley, and Temple Beth Shalom in Needham.


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3Thu-1C-5a: A Guided Tour of Mozart's Don Giovanni

Course Leader: Phillip Radoff

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

This course will provide a comprehensive guide to Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni, one of the greatest of all operas.  We will cover it from the overture to the final curtain and discuss the opera’s origins, Mozart’s music and the libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte.

The course is intended to provide a first acquaintance with one of the greatest operas ever composed to students unfamiliar with the opera, and also to afford a greater appreciation of the opera for students already familiar with it. Much of the class time will be spent watching and listening to recordings of the opera as augmented by the CL's comments, discussing the libretto, and developing an appreciation for Mozart’s genius in writing music that both enhances the libretto and illuminates the personalities and motivations of the characters. The opera is about three hours long, and we will watch and listen to all of it over the five-week period. We will begin with an overview of the early sources of the Don Juan legend that Lorenzo Da Ponte drew upon in writing the libretto, the circumstances under which the opera was composed, and the changes that Mozart and Da Ponte made to the score and the libretto between its opening in Prague and its later performances in Vienna. We will also take note of the sometimes contradictory commentary on the opera by composers and music scholars over the years.  

I will provide written questions before each class period to focus the students’ preparation and to provoke discussion.   Approximately 2 hours of pre-class preparation.

Books and Other Resources:

Any audio or video recording will do except the Peter Sellars version from the mid-80s.  A useful book that includes an accurate translation of the libretto is Ellen Bleiler’s “Don Giovanni” (1964) in the Dover Opera Guide and Librettos Series.  At last check, copies were available from online sources at modest cost.  The Minuteman Library network has numerous versions of the recording and the libretto; at last check, a copy of the opera with English titles and the libretto is available on YouTube.

Biography:

I have undergraduate and graduate degrees in physics but spent most of my professional career as a lawyer.  I sing in a community chorus, write short stories, and have had a lifelong interest in opera.  At LLAIC I have led previous opera courses and have given several lunchtime opera presentations.


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2Wed-1C-10: Memoir Writing: One Story At A Time

Course Leader: Myrna Rybczyk

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 4

Course Description:

Has a family member or friend ever said; "You should write these stories down.  Your memories are so interesting and you ought to share them!"  An autobiography is writing about your life; a memoir is writing from your life.  We all have stories to tell, but the hardest part seems to be getting started and in-class writing activities are helpful for that purpose.  Using the concept of a “theme circle,” we will be crafting the stories of your life writing in a short form. Writing from life can bring both tears of joy and sadness, puzzlement, resolve, and many other feelings as you touch upon significant memories. Writings are shared in a confidential supportive atmosphere. We will focus on finding one's voice and will not be making grammar or structural suggestions. We listen with acceptance, speak from experience and maintain confidentiality in a safe environment.

In each class, stories will be read and open to comment if the writer wishes. There will be a ten-minute write at the beginning of each session.  Approximately 2 hours per week will probably be needed for writing.

Books and Other Resources:

William Ainsser, Writing About Yourself, Da Capo Press, 2004

Biography:

I have taught this class three times for LLAIC, Co-leading with Carole McNamee for two sessions. I also teach this class at Church of Christ UCC in Millis where we are into our twentieth month. 

My background is in Music Therapy. I graduated from New England Conservatory of Music with a Bachelor’s Degree in Music and a Major in Music Therapy. I have worked as a Visiting Therapist for four and one half years at The McLean Hospital. During part of that time I was Assistant Director of Orchard Home for Girls, a branch of New England Home for Little Wanderers.  I taught high school chorus and band at Monadnock Regional High School and then worked for four years at Medfield State Hospital (MA) as Head Music Therapist. 

Since 1970, I have taught piano, guitar and voice in my studio – Millis Music Studio, in my hometown and am Director of Music at Church of Christ Congregational UCC in Millis.


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1Tue-1A-10: Leading Issues in Crime and Criminal Justice

Course Leader: Sandy Sherizen

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 3

Course Description:

Why is there so much crime?  We will examine various important questions on what causes crime, who does it and why, how the criminal justice system functions, and crime control strategies.  Our examination will include crimes against people and property, cyber crime and cyber security, and the uniqueness of white-collar crimes. 

The classes will be highly interactive.  Questions will be given to everyone prior to each class. The class leader will start with an overview of the major issues, followed by discussion and Q and A. 

Readings for the class will take several hours per week.

Books and Other Resources:

The course leader will put together a set of readings.  $20 will be charged to cover the cost of printing.

Biography:

Trained as a sociologist, I then went bad and became a criminologist and then really bad by becoming a computer security and privacy consultant and speaker.  I have taught at various universities, led seminars and given speeches in many domestic and
international settings, and was a frequent commentator about crime on major media sources. Flunking retirement, I taught ESL to adult immigrants as a volunteer. Currently I’m involved with immigrant rights, serve as a community member on a patient research ethics and safety board at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and am active in my synagogue.  At several lifelong learning programs, I have taught courses on Your Privacy is at Risk, The Sociology of “Deviant” Behaviors, the Inquisition and Marranos/Crypto Jews/ Conversos, and The Invisible Forms of Manipulation.


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3Thu-2C-10: Richard Nixon - A Man Divided

Course Leader: Marvin Snider

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

This course will focus on the life and presidency of Richard Nixon who was forced to resign as a result of Watergate.  We will see how his lifelong insecurity evolved from a childhood devoid of affection, riddled with abuse, and rife with disappointments.  These experiences set the foundation for his lifelong paranoia in his political relationships and with the press.  We will also evaluate his accomplishments, such as concluding the Vietnam war, ending military draft, creating detente with China, and signing the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty with the Soviet Union.  His other accomplishments include enforced desegregation of Southern schools, the development of the Environmental Protection Agency, and supporting Israel’s losses from the Yom Kippur War that led to the oil crisis.  We will also see his compassionate side, guided by his Quaker background, in his ability to help those in need.  The Watergate scandal, triggered by his belief that some political enemies were out to get him, was the event that brought his presidency to an end.  As the thirty-seventh president, he’s left a fascinating history that begs examination and discussion.

Each class will involve discussion of assigned readings and supplemental material. Approximately 2-3 hours per week of reading.

Books and Other Resources:

Being Nixon by Evan Thomas, Random House, 2015

Biography:

I have a PhD in psychology and have practiced both as a clinician and an organizational consultant. I’ve led many courses at the Harvard Life Learning Program and LLAIC, including International Hotspots, Innovators of Political Thought, Cults, Elections, and the lives of George Washington, Lincoln, Benjamin Franklin, Teddy Roosevelt, Hamilton, Truman, and Johnson.  When teaching, I stress understanding the presidents’ personalities and accomplishments.  I encourage participants to analyze each president’s achievements and the impact these had on the country.


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2Wed-2E-5b: "The Moderns" in Architecture, Interior and Furniture Design from 1925-1960

Course Leader: Dorie Weintraub

Course Length/Start: 5 weeks starting on April 22

Course Description:

The Moderns, not to be confused with today’s Contemporary Designers, have a special place in history.  The Modern Movement started in Europe as a reaction to the Beaux Arts and Neo-Classicism periods.  Remnants of the “Moderns” can be seen today.

In this course, we will explore the roots of Modernism and the various architects and designers who made the movement famous and lasting.   These are famous and less famous architects from Europe, South America, and North America including:  Gropius, Mies Van de Rohe, Alvar Alto, Rossi, Niemeyer, I M Pei, Frank Lloyd Wright, and others whose influence is apparent today.  We will also explore the furniture and interior design modality called the Mid-century Modern style.  This might be the furniture that you bought as newlyweds.  Examples are in any copy of the “Design within Reach” catalogue.

The format will include lectures and discussion.  No preparation time is required.

Books and Other Resources:

A link to a useful website.
https://dengarden.com/interior-design/A-Pocket-Guide-to-Mid-Century-Modern-Style

Biography:

I am a lifelong observer of the architecturally constructed environment and was introduced to Boston’s beautiful streets, the Charles River, and varied neighborhoods as a college student having moved to the Boston area from Rochester, NY.  After an early career designing software for IBM, I returned to school in my 40’s to study Architecture at the Boston Architectural College in Back Bay.   I worked at various Architectural firms including Dyer/Brown, ARC, DRA, and Margulies Perruzzi Architects, before starting my own firm, Weintraub Designs in 2009.  I am now retired.  Designing a building is a lot like designing software since similar principles apply.
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1Tue-1D-10: The Remarkable History of Color

Course Leader: Lane Williamson

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 3
This is a two-period course spanning first and second periods

Course Description:

What’s purple in the earth, red in the jar and yellow on the table?  Take the course and find out.  For many people color matters enormously: it has symbolic value, design value, marketing, scientific, and visual value. We’re not particularly interested in any of that in this course - we’re fascinated with the natural history of yellow - several yellows - and blues, and violets. How were they made? How are they being made now? What if any difference does it make when you see them, mix them, use them on palette and canvas - does it matter how they’re made - maybe -  even when you think about them? Join us to explore the natural history of colors and its impact.

This studio-based course will look at the natural history of color for artmaking.  We will explore how pigments have been sourced, brewed, created, and used throughout history.  We will experiment using pigments suspended in water, in egg, in oil, in resins, and in plastic.  Students will work on paper and on canvas.  The course will meet at the Course Leader’s studio in Sudbury, about a ten-minute drive from Temple Shir Tikva. In addition to the course fee, there will be a materials fee of $50. No previous experience with painting is needed; indeed, having no experience could be an advantage.

Books and Other Resources:

Finlay, Victoria. Color: A Natural History of the Palette.
Jennings, Simon. Artist’s Color Manual. Chronicle Books, 2003.

Biography:

I am a painter. I have exhibited in the New England states for over three decades.  My work is held in private and corporate collections. I have taught drawing & painting in school and privately for many years. I have taught at the secondary level and in three universities where I brought art and therapy together.  I have used art for healing with at-risk adolescents as well as with victims of domestic violence and their children. My website is www.lanebwilliamson.com


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2Wed-2F-5b: LILAC Players   (No course fee)

Course Leader: Maryann Wyner

Course Length/Start: 6 weeks Wednesdays 1:30 - 3:00: Rehearsals starting on April 22; Performance on May 27

Course Description:

Dust off your acting chops and come join us for an online Lilac Players 5-week class as we rehearse Arsenic and Old Lace for an online performance at the end of classes. The class is limited to 12. If you already signed up, you are all set. 

We will meet on Zoom video-conferencing, have 5 rehearsals on a regular schedule, and then present for all those who want to join our Zoom performance. Come, join our adventure!

Books and Other Resources:

Scripts will be provided.

Biography:

I have been involved in theater since high school, as an actor, stage manager, and properties manager.  After one short time on stage at Clark University as a corpse, I waited until my teaching days to get involved.  After receiving a BA from Clark, I went on, while teaching, to get an MA in English at Simmons College.  At Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall in Waltham, I served as the assistant director and occasional actor for over 30 high school performances.  After retiring from teaching, opportunities arose at Temple Shir Tikva where I performed in Fiddler on the Roof, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, The Megillah According to Grease and Little Shop of Horrors.  For several years I worked at Dover-Sherborn Middle School as a library assistant and served as a substitute teacher and tutor.  I have taught several courses at LLAIC.  As a teacher, acting was always part of my job, so getting involved in the LILAC Players allowed me to delve into something that has always made me smile.


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3Thu-2D-10: The 19th Century French Novel:  The Antihero

Course Leader: Lois Ziegelman

Course Length/Start: 10 weeks starting on March 5

Course Description:

For years the traditional novel relied on the stereotype of the handsome, valiant hero and the beautiful, virtuous heroine. The three novels we will be reading, in defiance of these stereotypes, feature, in turn, an aging young scoundrel, a pitiful, elderly man, and a frustrated woman desperately seeking romantic fulfillment. Interestingly enough, the three authors of these novels demonstrated idiosyncrasies that also defied the stereotypical.

Stendhal, born Marie-Henri Beyle, enjoyed an adventurous and diversified life as a soldier in Napoleon’s army, as a suspected spy, and finally, for many years, as a convict. Meanwhile, under the pseudonym of Baron de Stendhal, he achieved a special notoriety for hectic love affairs, commemorated in his tell-all book, De L’Amour. His novels, however, were not generally appreciated until forty years after his death.

Balzac, when not turning out novels at an amazing pace, chasing about Europe in pursuit of aristocratic ladies who seemed impervious to his advances until after a courtship of about eighteen years, a Russian countess succumbed and married him a few months before his death. 

Flaubert, from his early years on, frequently suffered fits of depression and developed a thoroughly misanthropic view of human nature. Embittered and withdrawn after he was arrested for writing “pornographic literature,” when he lost his beloved mother – his “support system” --- he became almost a recluse and ultimately died of apoplexy.

WELCOME TO THE WORLD OF THE ANTI-HERO.

The class formats will include presentations about the novelists and the novels, along with plenty of class discussion.

Books and Other Resources:

    •    Stendhal, The Red and the Black, translated by R. Scott Moncrieff.
    •    Balzac, Pere Goriot, translated by Henry Reed
    •    Flaubert, Madame Bovary. Translated by Paul De Man

Biography:

I did my Ph.D. at Brandeis and am a Professor Emerita from Framingham State College, where I taught world literature and drama for 31 years. A recipient of five fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, I have studied, taught and performed works ranging from Classical Antiquity through the 20th Century. At LLAIC I have most recently taught courses on Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina, Chekhov’s plays, and on the protest play.


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Updated May 20, 2020

Ċ
Peter Schmidt,
Dec 29, 2019, 6:37 AM
Ċ
Peter Schmidt,
Dec 29, 2019, 6:37 AM
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