The Academy for Lifelong Learning of Cape Cod, Inc. recently offered a program entitled Writing and Discussing the Greatest Era of Change in History: The 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s & 70s. Participants were asked to write and talk about their perceptions and experiences of this era Their writings and thoughts were shared in class requiring leadership on the part of participants. Writing techniques were also covered in class.

This summer, members of the Academy for Lifelong Learning at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh will be examining An Introduction to the History and Economics of Argentina and the Argentinians. This course is not a travelog. The study leader will provide insight about Argentina and its people through discussions of its history, geography, and economics. Among other things, the class will attempt to understand why this Latin American country believes itself to be part of Europe and why it has the highest percentage of people in psychotherapy in the world.

Members of the Adult Learning Institute at Columbia-Greene Community College in Hudson, New York recently discussed the DaVinci Code in their course People and Books.

Recently, members of the Baylor Institute for Learning in Retirement in Texas were able to study the Dead Sea Scrolls. The course examined the history of the scrolls, the different findings in the caves of Qumran, and the state of current research of the scrolls. It also included reading of relevant texts from these writings, which reflect the way of life, ideology, and theology of the Qumran community.

Lord Tennyson’s Lost Friend was the title of a spring program at the Berkshire Institute for Lifetime Learning in Massachusetts. Tennyson’s long elegy for his friend Arthur Hallam was 16 years in the writing. To better understand the poem, participants considered Victorian memorial arts and the allure of the uncanny. They discussed the British stiff upper-lip vs. “repression,” Freud’s observations on mourning and some thoughts of Heinz Kohut on difficult relationships.

Members of the Community Academy for Lifelong Learning in State College, Pennsylvania recently studied the Appreciation and Interpretation of Early Music. They explored a body of somewhat unrecognized music written between the 12th and 17th centuries. Following musical scores while listening to early music, participants discussed the music and its historical and cultural background in Spain, France, England and Germany.

Members of the ILR at Bluffton University in Ohio recently studied Mr. Chips, Annie Sullivan, and Other Extraordinary Teachers in Film. They explored how time, place, subjects, students, culture and circumstances affect teaching and learning by viewing films that profile various methods of teaching.

Ernie Pyle: World War II’s Most Celebrated Journalist is the title of a course given recently at the ILR at Bradley University in Peoria, IL. Members joined a local actor and radio personality as they explored the life and writings of the man who created the mental image of the American soldier in “the Good War.”

Members of the Learning in Retirement program at Sacred Heart University in Stamford, CT recently studied Dietrich Bonhoeffer: 100th Anniversary Reflections. Led by the pastor of a local church and a Bonhoeffer scholar, members reflected on his life and thoughts, the man and his writings, while examining his values in present social and moral climates.

Members of the Lifelong Learning Institute, Manassas, Virginia recently took a course entitled Science and Religion: The Conflict of Two Different Worlds. They examined two case studies: the Galileo and Scopes trials and what they tell us about the real conflict between religion and science.

Members of the Lifelong Learning program at Coastal Carolina University in South Carolina took part last month in a program entitled The History of Medicine. Four members of Coastal’s Department of History shared their internationally recognized research into several engaging areas of the history of medicine. Brian Nance spoke on How To Save the Lord Treasurer’s Life: Turquet de Mayerne and the Final Illness of Robert Cecil. Eliza Glaze’s topic was The Politics of Bathing in Medieval Italy: Medicine and Power in the Poems of Peter Eboli. Barry Price discussed The Great Flu Epidemic (of 1918) in South Carolina and Ann Pierce discussed The Scottish Experience of the Great Flu Epidemic of 1918.

This spring, members of the L.I.F.E. program at Mount Saint. Mary College in New York studied The Art of Criticism. The terminology of our culture was culled by the writings of Joan Didion, Susan Sontag and Pauline Kael. Members discussed Joan Didion’s Year of Magical Thinking, then compared this to Didion’s novel, Democracy and selected essays from her Political Fictions. Craig Segelman’s Sontag and Kael: Opposites Attract Me introduced the voices of these writers. They then selected several of Sontag’s small gems such as On Photography, Illness as Metaphor or Regarding the Pain of Other.

Icelandic Sagas is the title of a course being given this month at the Lyceum program at Binghamton University in New York. Members will explore the world of the Vikings in an introduction to the most important of the Icelandic sagas, Njal’s Saga.

Humor, Paradoxes, and Insider Jokes in Religions and Philosophies is the title of a course given this month at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. Philosophers and theologians, especially male philosophers and theologians, tend to take themselves very, very seriously. However, whether by accident or intention, there is a lot of wonderful humor in both fields. Some of it is quite ribald and some of it is very subtle. In this class participants will visit all kinds.

The OLLI program at California State University, Channel Islands offered members this past winter a program entitled Language and the Law. Taught by a member of the California Bar, this course looked at questions such as why people can’t understand what lawyers write – what’s behind the growing move to change the language of jury instruction – How does one prove a fact and what is the role of language in determining credibility. Along with other stimulating questions, the participants studied the history behind current practices of language used in the legal world.

The QUEST program in New York City recently gave members a chance to share their Point of View on a wide selection of newspaper account, op-ed pieces, editorials and magazine articles. Class members examined and freely debated the points of view that were expressed in the class.

Shedding Light on Mental Illness is the title of a course given this spring at the Senior College at the University of Maine Hutchinson Center. Participants examined the characteristics of several major mental illnesses and the evidence for the biological basis of mental illness. They also discussed the nature of the psychological experience of mental illness, and the resources that are available for dealing with it.




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