As the excitement of the holidays slips into history and winter settles in, it's easy to slump into “brain hibernation.” But Sherborn's Lifetime Learning can come to the rescue with its winter/spring program of provocative and informative short courses; they can keep participants stimulated and engaged until the tulips bloom again.
Editor’s Note: The following was submitted by Sherborn Lifetime Learning.
Sherborn’s Lifetime Learning is offering its winter/spring program of provocative and informative short courses; they can keep participants stimulated and engaged until the tulips bloom again.
Descriptions of the courses follow along with registration information.
Chaos, Chaos, Everywhere!
Six lectures about issues that matter to all Americans and the opportunity to ask questions of our expert political analyst, Alan Schechter. The topics are: (1) The First Year of President Trump: “You’ll all be tired of winning,” (2) Bannon, Breitbart, and the Civil War in the Republican Party, (3) Hate Speech, Trigger Warnings, and the Threat to Free Speech on College Campuses, (4) The Opioid Epidemic, (5) The Forgotten Americans: Appalachia in Crisis, (6) What Happens Next: Can Democrats Recover?
Presenter: Alan Schechter is professor emeritus at Wellesley College, where he taught American politics and Constitutional law. He is a sought-after lecturer, author of numerous articles and newspaper columns as well as books on international administrative law and contemporary constitutional issues.
Classes will be held on Thursdays, 10 a.m.-noon, March 22, 29, April 5, 12, 19, and 26 in Sherborn Town Hall, Room 204A.
The Story of Swing
From 1910 into the 1950s, dance bands left an amazing imprint on American culture. During the “swing era,” band leaders developed their own theme or signature songs and singers emerged as superstars. Learn how technology allowed singers to become more prominent and the big role that radio played in the swing era.
1927-1930 Crooners Emerge featuring Wayne King, Cab Calloway, Louis Armstrong, Glen Gray, Rudy Vallee, Pee Wee Hunt, Russ Columbo, Betty Grable and others.
1931-1933 Broadcast Era featuring Eddy Duchin, Fats Waller, Xavier Cugat, Ruby Newman, Pinky Tomlin, Kay Starr, Arlene Francis, Ted Straeter and others.
Presenter: For many years Jack Craig has entertained and enlightened people all over New England about the music of the 20th century. His encyclopedic knowledge and engaging presentations make him a draw for everyone, but especially those who grew up mid-century and remember.
Classes will be held on Fridays, 1:30-3 p.m., April 27 and May 4 in Woodhaven Community Room.
Jane Austen’s Troublemaking Heroines
Most of Jane Austen's heroines are easy to love, but two in particular have created difficulties for her admirers. In “Emma,” Austen set herself the challenge of generating sympathetic interest in the fate of the “handsome, clever and rich” Emma Woodhouse, whose failures of self-awareness cause considerable trouble to those around her. And in “Mansfield Park,” Austen gives us a recessive and quiet heroine, Fanny Price, who many readers have found a charmless disappointment. Devoting two discussion sessions to each of these two novels, we will reckon sympathetically and seriously with Austen's complex intentions.
Presenter: Tim Peltason is professor of English and Class of 1949 Professor in Ethics at Wellesley College. A specialist in Victorian literature, he has also taught and written about Shakespeare and a variety of 19th and 20th century English and American writers. He is currently at work on a series of essays about Jane Austen.
Classes will be held on Wednesdays, Feb. 21, 28, March 7 and 14, 1:30-3 p.m., in the Pilgrim Church.
From Selfish to Self-Help: Hobbes and Rousseau in the Modern World
Thomas Hobbes in the 17th century and Jean-Jacques Rousseau in the 18th have been credited with the moral and political foundations of capitalism, communism, and the way we live now. Is this truly what they had to say? We will look at their writings in the light of the apparent contemporary decline of civility, the persistence of aggression and war, and the uneasy teetering of democracy.
Presenter: Maud Chaplin is professor emerita in the Philosophy Department of Wellesley College where she taught for 40 years. The wide scope of her knowledge and ability to engender discussion around philosophical ideas make her classes both informative and thought provoking.
Classes will be held on Mondays, April 2, 9, 23 and 30, 10:30 a.m.-noon, in Pilgrim Church, 25 South Main St., Sherborn.
There are three ways to register: the fastest is online. Go to Sherbornma.org/council-aging. Click on Lifetime Learning. An electronic confirmation will guarantee your enrollment. Or use the registration form on a Lifetime Learning brochure (available at the COA office and at many venues around town) and mail it with your check, made out to the Town of Sherborn, to the Collector’s Office, Sherborn Town Hall, 19 Washington St., Sherborn 01770. Or call the COA (508-651-7858) to get your name on the list and send your check, made out to Town of Sherborn, to the Collector’s Office.
Early registration is recommended; some classes fill up rapidly, others might be cancelled because of low enrollment.