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Creativity Never Retires

Positive Aging

Diane Lang, therapist, author, educator

Life expectancy has improved considerably in recent decades. Most of us look forward to more than twenty years in retirement. How we choose to address our aging bodies and minds during this time is up to us. Our beliefs on aging play a huge role in our happiness and health. We will explore ways to thrive at any age, perspective on the aging process, the truths and myths of aging and cultivate a positive approach to future years and the new possibilities the next stage of life can bring. 3 SESSIONS

Mon, Feb 3-17, 10:30 am-noon
Fee and Code: $65, XPERS 211

History Behind The Headlines

Brooks Susman, history, philosophy instructor and rabbi emeritus

Is the past prologue? Does history repeat itself? Does the arc of history bend toward justice? Sharpen your opinions by examining current events through the lens of history. Each week we will discuss and debate Sunday editorials and news coverage (in both left and right leaning media outlets) with a view to their relevance to history and in our own lives. Knowledge is more than a headline. Napoleon said history is a set of agreed upon lies. Santayana declared that those who forget the past are condemned to relive it. Are they right? 4 SESSIONS

Thurs, Feb 13-Mar 5, 10:30 am-12:30 pm
Fee and Code: $85, XHUMN 107

Defining Moments – Short Stories

Patricia Whitehead, librarian

We’ve all had them. Fleeting moments that have a lasting effect on our lives. We may not always be aware at the time but in retrospect, we realize things were never the same after. These three stories deal with just such moments: A petty theft. An explosive accident. A small act of kindness. Dramatic and tragic, Quiet and undramatic. Innocuous yet profound. One inciting incident, a myriad of rippling and lifetime effects. Stories are: The Piano Teacher’s Pupil by William Trevor, The Stone Boy by Gina Berriault and The Tribute by Jane Gardam. Stories will be emailed. 3 SESSIONS

Tues, Feb 25-Mar 10, 10 am-noon
Fee and Code: $65, XHUML 099

Understanding Opera

John Balme, humanities and piano instructor, Director, Concordia Vocal Academy

For over 400 years both high society and the general public have enjoyed a theatrical phenomenon called ‘opera’ which literally just means ‘work’. We’ll unwrap this theatrical tradition to find out what makes it so intriguing. We’ll explore how different countries have modified this form of theater with their own dramatic traditions, following opera’s ‘invention’ in Florence in the 1590s. We’ll identify what opera lovers in different countries are really looking for in a great opera and a great production and examine opera’s political role, especially in the 19th century, and in the ways its has pushed the boundaries of conventional theater throughout its long turbulent history. And of course we will highlight the big names, composers and singers alike. 3 SESSIONS

Fri, Mar 27-Apr 10, 9-10:30 am
Fee and Code: $65, XHUMM 021

Hot Topics In Baseball: Dispelling Myths

Howard Miller, Brookdale professor

Howard Miller’s baseball blog The Hall of Miller and Eric boasts over 70,000 visitors. We love the game of baseball. There’s a reason it’s called our National Pastime. And we all know a lot about the game we so love. Or at least we think we do. The game’s mythology is such that some of the things we think we know are wrong. They’ve been altered by politics, historians and journalists of the day, and time. Join our lively discussion of some of baseball’s greatest myths, from our misunderstanding of the game’s origins to our misunderstanding of the “Steroid Era” and many other topics in between. 3 SESSIONS

Mon, Mar 23-Apr 6, 12:30-2 pm
Fee and Code: $59, XHUMN 312

20th Century Comedians

Larry Wolfert, instructor

It is said that laughter is the best medicine. So join the fun and learn about the people who made America laugh in the 20th century including Laurel & Hardy, Marx Brothers, Jack Benny, Abbott & Costello, Bob Hope, Martin & Lewis, Lucille Ball, Milton Berle, Sid Caesar, Jackie Gleason and many others. Our focus will be exploring their paths to stardom and their downfalls, as well as a sampling of some of their better known routines and scenes. 3 SESSIONS

Tues, Mar 31-Apr 14, 10-11:30 am
Fee and Code: $65, XPERS 193

Jewish And Christian Scripture, Lifetime Lessons From The Bible: Who Says What It Says?

Christopher Bellitto, PhD, professor of history, Kean University
Brooks Susman, history, philosophy instructor and rabbi emeritus

Welcome Passover and Easter with this Breakfast And Brilliance presentation. Faith traditions depend on “The Word.” But whose word, and who says what words are in and which are out? And who decides what they mean? And can those meanings change? Join Brookdale’s own God Squad for a lively discussion of the history and nagging questions about how Jewish and Christian scripture became Scripture. Full breakfast included.

Mon, Apr 6, 9:30 am-noon
Fee and Code: $59, XPHIL 066

Constitutional Revolution-Examining Executive Power

Bruce Brickman, Esq

Our founders wrote the Constitution with institutional checks and balances to prevent a president from exercising the unlimited power of a despot. Today, the institutional structure of the government envisioned by our founders has radically changed. We have an Executive Branch claiming vast unchecked powers which, generally, has been upheld by the Supreme Court. We will examine the “necessary and proper” clause, what it means to “faithfully execute the law,” and the relationship between the Supreme Court and the Executive Branch. Our discussion will focus on whether 21st century problems validate a strong authoritarian executive as critical to our national security or whether the undermining the 18th century institutional checks limiting executive power forms a
pathway to tyranny. 4 SESSIONS

Tues-Fri, Apr 21-24, 2-4 pm
Fee and Code: $85, XHUMN 333

Human Rights – Where Philosophy Meets Reality

Matt Hershberger, writer, editor, human rights scholar

The philosophy of human rights is grounded in the idea that all human beings are worthy of being treated with dignity and respect. It sounds uncontroversial, so why do human rights seem to be under attack from all sides? We’ll explore where philosophy meets reality, by focusing on three of human rights’ biggest adversaries from the last century: genocide, socialism, and religion. 3 SESSIONS

Wed, Apr 22-May 6, 10 am-noon
Fee and Code: $65, XPHIL 069

String Theory: Ultimate Theory of Everything Or Wildest Goose Chase?

Sarbmeet Kanwal, PhD, physicist

Never has a theory held more promise for providing an answer to our age-old quest to understand everything there is! If string theory is right then we live in a universe with 11 dimensions where everything is made of tiny string-like loops of vibrating energy. But half a century has gone by and there’s still no firm evidence! This course will unravel the mystery of string theory using everyday language and explain why there is a growing consensus among physicists to change course. No
prerequisites. 4 SESSIONS

Fri, Apr 24-May 15, 1:30-3 pm
Fee and Code: $85, XPERS 275

Trump Impeachment – What Happened And Why

Robert Salman, Esq., litigator and former adjunct law professor

Join this examination of the process and the politics of presidential impeachment. Review the recent evolution of the Trump impeachment. We will explore what happened – and why.

Thurs, Apr 30, 10:30 am-noon
Fee and Code: $24, XHUMN 259

Prohibition: On The Jersey Shore

Gregory Caggiano, historian, instructor, blogger

An exploration of the world of prohibition and bootlegging on the Jersey Shore. Times in this country were changing, but were they changing for the better? Politicians played both sides of the field in this turbulent and sometimes confusing era filled with mobsters, smuggling, corruption, and violence. Learn how an area built for religious retreats exploded into a crime underworld and how the banning of alcohol inadvertently shook up societal norms.

Tues, May 5, 10 am-noon
Fee and Code: $29, XHUMN 324

Art History Series

Gina Torello, Brookdale adjunct professor, professional artist

Take a tour through the ages in the world of art history. Journey from ancient Mediterranean civilizations to the centers of Christianity and the Renaissance. Finally, explore the Age of Kings, when monarchs governed as virtual dictators, and their influence dominated social, cultural and artistic affairs of the time as well as political matters. Lectures will include viewing, discussing, and examining art works. Enjoy a hands-on activity at the conclusion of every workshop. 4 SESSIONS

Tues, Jun 9-Jun 30, 6-8:30 pm
Fee and Code: $85, XARTF 164

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