2014 Course Offerings

Each Three-Week Course is $40. All courses meet in the Kaul Hall Forum Classroom. Classes will not meet the week of April 14, 2014 due to the Easter holiday.

Emerson and His Times | John Heffner

Tuesdays, March 4, 11 and 18 | 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Ralph Waldo Emerson has much to teach us that we miss if we only know his essay Self-Reliance. We will examine it together with some of his main ideas drawn from other essays, and we will also look at his life and background and his influence as abolitionist, public speaker, and key voice in New England Transcendentalism. Relevant material will be introduced in class. 

Nine Scorpions in a Bottle | Joseph Hylan

Thursdays, March 6, 13 and 20 | 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

The course will consider those decisions of the United States Supreme Court that have had the greatest impact – for good or ill – on the history of the American Republic. By examining the circumstances – political, social, and economic – surrounding the decisions, the course will, as it were, approach American history through its back door. The decisions: Marbury v Madison, Scott v Sanford, Ex Parte Milligan. Lochner v New York, United States v Abrams, United States v Carolene Products, West Coast Hotel v Parrish, California v Adamson, Brown v Board of Education, Gideon v Wainwright, Roe v Wade, and Bush v Gore.

Mysterious Offerings: International Mystery | Meredith Baird

Tuesdays, March 25, April 1 and 8 | 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

The field of international mystery fiction offers a unique insight into the police procedures, laws and social issues facing detectives in different cultures.  The addition of foreign settings provides a strong atmospheric element to each story.

Join us as we read and discuss three character-driven novels featuring mystery series detectives set in Canada, France and Sweden.

Please note: Because this course will be heavily discussion-based, the class size will be limited to 25.   

Book Discussion List:
  • March 25: “The Crypt Thief” by Mark Pryor
  • April 1: “Borkmann’s Point” by Hakan Nesser
  • April 8: “Still Life” by Louise Penny 

The Universal Shapes and How to Use Them | Carolyn Guss

Wednesdays, March 26, April 2 and 9 | 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Carl Jung wrote that "The mechanism that moves energy is the symbol." Discover your process of inner growth and development through the Five Universal Shapes, a system devised and practiced by cultural anthropologist Angeles Arrien. We will explore the forms of circle, square, triangle, cross, and spiral: five symbols that appear in the art of all cultures and have distinct psychological associations for humanity. Learn how these shapes help determine your current position on your life path and how to use these tools to enhance your future choices and direction. We will also discuss the societal and cultural influence of the symbols as they appear in ancient and modern forms such as art, architecture, and advertising.


The Media and American Politics | Walter Fox

Thursdays, March 27, April 3 and 10| 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

This course will explore the close relationship between the media and the American political system from the active participation of the press in the War for Independence to today’s mass media coverage of presidential campaigns. Special emphasis will be placed on whether the press is fulfilling its role as envisioned by the First Amendment: to empower the citizens of a democratic society.

The Artist As a Reflector of Culture | Helen McDevitt-Smith

Tuesdays, April 22, 29, and May 6 | 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

In addition to having aesthetic merit, many paintings communicate obvious and sometimes subtle social and/or political messages. Great artists are able to elicit emotional and intellectual reactions to the statements they make in their creative expressions. During these three sessions we will view, analyze, and discuss the way that artists have reflected themes of justice and peace in their paintings and at times influenced changes in their respective cultures.

Three Popes: Two New Saints and the Man Who Chose Them | Sr. Marie Michele Donnelly


Thursdays, April 24, May 1 and 8 | 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

In the spring of 2014 the Catholic Church will have two new canonized saints, Pope John XXIII and Pope John Paul II. Many see these two men as very different. Join us as we explore that question and the contributions of each of them and why Pope Francis deems them worthy of canonization. We will also consider Pope Francis himself and what he is bringing to the Catholic Church and to the world at large.

A Mystical Key for Self-Transformation | Tiziana DeStephanis Murray

Thursdays, May 15, 22 and 29 | 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Based on N.Y. Times bestselling author Carolyn Myss's book "Sacred Contracts," this class will explore modern life through the lens of archetypes, mystical symbols and spiritual change agents. This fascinating system is a combination of psychology and astrology that brings to light the inner energies through which you can interpret the world and your place in it. Come and learn about this unique way of understanding yourself and others.