In-Depth Examination of Chicago to Highlight Lifelong Learning Academy

New and Exciting Array of Mini-Courses offered on Diverse Topics

HARTFORD, CT, December 21, 2013 – An all-day seminar, “Chicago: America’s Second City” will highlight the spring2013 catalog of courses offered by Trinity’s Academy of Lifelong Learning, a program designed for adults who want to pursue new interests, expand their intellectual horizons and enrich their lives.

The 11 topics will span the ages, from the prophets and their legacy to the earth’s changing climate.

The Academy is open to adults in Greater Hartford, with the mini-courses primarily taught by current and former Trinity faculty. The Academy’s co-directors are Frank Kirkpatrick, Ellsworth Morton Tracy Lecturer and Professor of Religion, and Patricia A. Bunker, retired head reference librarian. Three classes will be held in the morning, one in the afternoon and the balance are scheduled for late afternoon or early evening. Enrollees have access to many Trinity resources, including the Raether Library. Discounts are provided to Cinestudio, Austin Arts Center and College sporting events.

The prices range from $85 for a four-week mini-course to $125 for the all-day seminar to $300 for the eight-week memoir-writing course. Trinity faculty and staff are eligible for a 10 percent discount. Gift certificates are also available.

Among the exciting new courses that will be offered in the spring of 2013 are:

  •   Chicago: America’s Second City

This daylong program on Saturday, April 6 will meet from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a one-hour break for lunch at noon. Two sessions will be held in the morning and two in the afternoon. “Inventing and Reinventing The City of Big Shoulders: From Carl Sandburg to Barack Obama” will be taught by Richard Hornung, a faculty member at Eastern Connecticut State University; “Goin’ to Chicago: The Great Migration and Urban Life in the Black Metropolis” will be taught by Davarian Baldwin, Paul E. Raether Distinguished Professor of American Studies; “Chicago’s Architecture and the Making of the Modern Metropolis” will be taught by Kathleen Curran, professor of fine arts; and “The University of Chicago: Does Fun Really Go There to Die?” will be taught by David Cruz-Uribe, professor of mathematics.

  •   The Art of Healing in Native Cultures

This five-week course will be taught by Ellison Findly, professor of religion and Asian studies, on February 6, 13, 20 and 27 and March 6 from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the The Heights at Avery Heights, 705 New Britain Avenue, Hartford. The course will explore the art of healing in indigenous cultures in Southeast Asia. Using images and stories from Findly’s research in Vietnam and Laos, the class will look at why the healing arts of the shaman are often chosen over the healing techniques of Buddhist monks and western doctors. Areas that will be studied include techniques of diagnosing an illness, the use of special clothing and material objects, healing rituals, interviews and trance experiences.

  •   The Prophets and Their Legacy

This five-week course will be taught by John A. Gettier, professor of religion emeritus, on March 14 and 21 and April 4, 11 and 18 from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the Lucy Robbins Welles Library, 95 Cedar Street, Newington. The prophets of ancient Israel represent a remarkable phenomenon in the history of religions. This course will examine the specific prophets of the Hebrew Bible as well as the prophetic movement itself, the literature it inspired, and the impact of both upon Israel’s evolving tradition and the emergency of Christianity. 

  •   The Emergence of Modern Europe: From the Age of Faith to the Age of Reason

This four-week course will be taught by Borden Painter, president emeritus of Trinity and a former dean of the faculty, on January 22, 19 and February 5 and 12 from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. at The McAuley, 275 Steele Road, West Hartford. From the 13th to the 18 centuries, Europe underwent major changes that transformed society in unexpected and unintended ways. The course will survey the period and discuss the debates that these and labels such as Renaissance, Reformation and Enlightenment have engendered.

  •   The Women of Ancient Israel

This four-week course will be taught by John Gettier, professor of religion emeritus, on February 5, 12, 19 and 26 from 10:30 a.m. to noon at The McLean Home, 75 Great Pond Road, Simsbury. The Hebrew Bible presents a rich and varied portrayal of women in multiple roles and activities, from the mothers of Israel to the warrior-like Deborah and Judith to the sirens and seducers. The course will explore the Biblical stories in their rich detail to bring these women alive and demonstrate the respect and significance accorded them in historical memory. 

  •   The Earth’s Changing Climate

This six-week course will be taught by Christoph Geiss, associate professor of physics and environmental science, on January 29, February 5, 12, 19 and 26 and March 5 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Heat waves in Europe, freak storms on the East Coast of the United States, and prolonged droughts in large parts of the U.S. have caught our attention over the past few years. The class will learn about the processes that influence climate, study the Earth’s climate, collect data to determine the nature of climate change, and discuss its potential impact on society.

  •   Memoir Writing: Tell Your Own Story

This eight-week course will be taught by Hank Herman, a columnist and blogger for the Westport News, on Feb. 27, March 6, 13 and 20 and April 3, 10, 17 and 24 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Part of the human condition is the desire to set down on paper the most memorable events of one’s life. That’s why almost every celebrity has at some point tried his or her hand at writing a memoir. Whether your motivation is to have a neatly packaged memoir to pass down to your children or a keepsake to enjoy or to make it onto the best-seller list, this course will help you do it. This course is limited to eight students and the fee is $300.

  •   Burst of Light: Caravaggio and his Legacy

This two-week course will be taught by Jean Cadogan, professor of fine arts, on February 28 on the Trinity campus from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and March 7 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Wadsworth Atheneum. The artist, Michalengelo Merisi da Caravaggio, transformed picture making in the late 16th century through his dramatic use of light and his psychological interpretation of narrative. The first lecture will present an overview of Caravaggio’s life and art, and the second session will consist of a gallery talk. The Atheneum’s exhibition includes five works by Caravaggio.

  •   Lady Day and Her Sisters in Jazz

This five-week course will be taught by Andrew De Rocco, a former dean of the faculty, on March 6, 13 and 20 and April 3 and 10 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Of the women whose voices have made an essential contribution to the evolution of jazz, Billie Holiday holds a special place, and her influence is evident in her most recent musical descendants. Class members will listen to the women whose voices take the songs beyond the melody and the lyric, either by the rendition or with an added improvisation akin to an instrumentalist. 

  •   The World of the Gawain Poet

This six-week course will be taught by Sheila Fisher, associate academic dean and professor of English, on March 12 and 26 and April 2, 9, 16 and 23 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. One of the finest writers of the English medieval literary tradition was a poet whose name we don’t know and whose five poems survive in one single manuscript. He is called “the Gawain poet” after his most famous work, the beautifully structured romance, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. The Gawain poet writes in a variety of genres. Class members will discuss the texts in relation to their medieval context and try to imagine who their creator might have been.

  •   Euripides: Tradition-Challenger, Part Two

This six-week course will be taught by John Williams, Hobart Professor Emeritus of Classics, on March 25 and April 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Part One of this course is not a prerequisite. The same themes, issues and concerns, which were presented in Part One, will be discovered in Part Two. Euripides’ themes and literary devices will be combined and come to fruition, especially in his last and greatest tragedy, the Bacchae, written in self-imposed exile. Euripides, the third of the great 5th-century Athenian tragedians, portrayed humans as they are and presented the human condition as it is or as he saw it. He was especially talented when it came to exploring the human psyche. War, the role of women, political institutions, traditional myths, and the function of the gods were some of the subjects of his scrutiny, but he gives no answers or resolutions. The audience is expected to come to its own conclusion. The first session assignment will be to read Iphigenia in Tauris and Electra.

For more information about the Academy, call 860-297-2125 or email​