Registration begins March 5
First session is April 4
Spring, 2019 ADVENTURES
4 Wednesdays, 1 – 3:30 p.m., April 10 – May 1
The basic elements of drawing will be introduced in this beginner class using a variety of drawing materials. Some of the subjects for the course include portraits and landscapes. Bring a drawing pad, pencil set, eraser, charcoal pencil and set of colored pencils to the first class. Class limit: 10
Cynthia Dias is a watercolor artist who has taught art and historically based classes for a number of years. In addition to her art work that features scenes of Maine and England, she creates textiles that are handwoven at her home in Newcastle. She has worked as a curator and director of various museums and illustrated a museum cookbook.
The History of Television Sitcoms
3 Mondays, 9:30 – Noon, May 13 – June 3, No class May 27
Have TV sitcoms ever been anything more than 30 minutes of idle entertainment? This course will make the case that some have been much more than that. From their very inception, sitcoms reflected American society writ large and influenced our behavior and attitudes. In the early 1950s and into the 1960s, shows like “Father Knows Best” and “Leave It to Beaver” were important moral guideposts and simultaneously sales agents for the middle-class way of life. Later, others such as “All in the Family” and “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” became expressions of, if not catalysts for, social change. As America moved further and further away from stay-at-home moms and omnipotent fathers, sitcoms chronicled our becoming a more harried, cynical and self-indulgent nation. Groundbreaking programs like “Married with Children” and “Seinfeld”— the latter facetiously called the show about nothing — were a cringeworthy look at ourselves in the mirror. This course will include lots of film and video clips and will make you think as well as laugh. Class limit: 50
Peter Imber is a former television news producer. For most of his 28-year career he was based in Los Angeles covering national and international stories for ABC News broadcasts including World News with Peter Jennings and Nightline. He is the recipient of a National News Emmy, a DuPont-Columbia Award and a National Press Club Award. In 2010 he retired to Camden with his Rockland-born wife, Jo Dondis. She grew up watching movies at the Strand Theatre in Maine while Peter spent many happy hours in front of a television set in Pennsylvania watching “Ozzie and Harriet.” He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television. He recently completed two years as president of the Camden Conference.
Grounded Poets: Robert Frost and Seamus Heaney
Damariscotta 6 Thursdays, 1:30 – 3:30 April 11 – May 16
Profound, but not obscure; formally neat, but not precious; popular, but never commonplace – Frost and Heaney are worth reading again and again. Read together, the qualities of one illuminate the qualities of the other. Read aloud, their poems make sense to the ear immediately. Studied on the page, their craft is evident and beautiful. It would be useful to bring Heaney’s Opened Ground and Frost’s Complete Poems (Holt) to class, although their poems are available on the internet. Class limit: 20
John Ward has been professor and chair of Kenyon College (Gambier OH) English Department and has served as Dean of Centre College (Danville KY). He earned his B.A. from Amherst College and Ph.D. from the University of Virginia and has taught courses in 18th and 19th century British literature and the history of the British novel. He has published on 18th and 19th century British works as well as those of Vachel Lindsay and Robert Lowell. He has recently served as an instructor for Augusta’s Senior College.
Editing Techniques: How to Cut & Prune Your Writing
6 Wednesdays, 3:00 – 5:00, April 24 – June 5, No class May 15
According to Nancy Thayer, “It’s never too late…in life or in fiction…to revise.” Given honest and constructive feedback, students will learn to “cut and prune” stories as they organize a kaleidoscope of random recollections. Memoir writings and supportive ways to deliver and receive constructive criticism will be discussed. Each participant will bring a completed story to class. The group will respond to the story, discussing memorable “hot spots” as well as places that could be stronger, funnier or more real. No prior writing experience is necessary, just the desire to strengthen the impact of your writing. Class limit: 9
Caroline Davis Janover is an award-winning author of four novels and a play for children and young adults. A winner of the New Jersey Governor’s Outstanding Teacher Award, Caroline has spent her professional career working in public and private school education. Caroline has dyslexia and has lectured nationally on the creative strengths and academic challenges of children who grow up with learning and attentional differences. She currently is working (slowly) on a memoir.
6 Fridays, 1:30 – 4:00, April 12 – May 17
This course poses the questions: “How well does the current economic system serve the basic human needs of every member of society, and if it does not, what can we do?” A review of some of the societal factors exposed by the 2016 election confirms longstanding suspicions that the 2009 “Great Recession” was indeed a systemic rather than a financial crisis which had been developing for some time. We will explore the many systemic problems and crises facing us and the latent opportunities for beneficial change many of these problems present. We seek, most of all, to understand the factors that contributed to the predicament we are in. We will explore belief systems, economics, science – both natural and behavioral – as well as history in our search for better answers. It is a disturbing lesson of history that when failing systems are exposed, in the absence of a clear idea of the new world in which we wish to live, a demagogue inevitably fills the idea-vacuum, promising salvation, based on fixing the blame on “the other.” In the end, nature itself seems the most promising model based on which a new and better economic system may be built. Class limit 20
Paul Kando is an engineer who has worked internationally for decades. Paul grew up in Europe and experienced firsthand the authoritarian regimes of Hitler and Stalin. He was educated there as a child of political undesirables under difficult circumstances. Paul became a researcher in textile chemistry, chemical energy storage, solar energy, and building technology, among other fields. Since Paul’s emigration to America some 60 years ago, he has seen monumental changes in the U.S. markets, economy, and society – not always for the better. In expressing his good fortune, Paul is motivated to give back and offer what he has learned, having taught at senior colleges in Augusta, Brunswick, and Belfast.
Dancing with the Daffodils
The Mature Poetry of Wordsworth and Coleridge
6 Thursdays, 10:00–Noon, April 11 – May 16
Daffs are my favorite flowers; they bloom when I need them most. As a scholar and a gardener, no poems speak to me more directly than the mature works of Wordsworth and Coleridge as they explore nature and the power of the imagination. What part does nature play in our lives? How can or do we use nature to live more fully and humanely? How much of what we see depends on our own mood? What role does imagination play in shaping what we see? These were the questions that the two poets discussed as they hiked the Lake District together. As soon as I have a class list, I will send you a syllabus with the names of widely available poems by Wordsworth and Coleridge and when we will be discussing them. I will also give you tips on how to read them with pleasure and without stress. Class Limit: 20
Maryanne Ward is retired after a 40-year career in small college education. She chaired Kenyon College (Gambier OH) Humanities program and served as Academic Dean until moving to Centre College, Danville KY, to become Professor of English and Chair of the Humanities Program. Her area of special interest and scholarship is 19th century British literature. Among other topics, her publications have examined the relationship between literature, landscape and painting.
What’s that Monument in the Town Square
Maine’s Role in the Civil War – Part II
4 Fridays, 10:00 – Noon, April 12 – May 3
An astute observer traveling through Maine will note one thing that almost all towns have in common; a monument in the town square honoring former residents who gave, “…the last full measure of devotion” in the Union cause during the Civil War. The rationale for these monuments becomes even more compelling upon the realization that during the War, Maine supplied the largest number of combatants of any state in the Union in proportion to its population. Our State’s contribution to this epic struggle was not limited to just infantry troops. Historians also point to a Maine link with respect to one of the principal motivational factors for the War itself: the 1852 book Uncle Tom’s Cabin authored by Harriet Beecher Stowe, a Brunswick resident. Maine contributed more than 30 generals to the Union cause, and surprisingly, two to the Confederacy. This Course will address Maine’s important involvement in the Civil War and will focus upon several key Civil War battles in which Maine troops played a major role including Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg. It will also address the part Maine soldiers and commanders played in concluding the struggle and the long-term effects of the War upon the Maine economy and the Nation Note: This course is not a repeat of the Fall 2018 course. Class limit: 45
Dick Mayer lives with his wife and two Labrador retrievers in Damariscotta. He is an amateur historian with a lifelong passion for the Civil War and an active member of the American Battlefield Trust, an organization that has restored and preserved over 50,000 acres of battlefields. Dick has visited and studied virtually every major Civil War battlefield in both the eastern and western theaters of the War. During his 50-year career in domestic and international law enforcement, including serving as the Chief of the Brunswick Police Department, he lectured extensively at the FBI National Academy and National Executive Institute; the University of Maine at Farmington; The Maine Criminal Justice Academy; Southwest Legal Foundation and in many other venues.
Through the Lens of Satire: Gulliver’s Travels
8 Fridays, 1:00 – 3:00, April 12 – May 31
Satire uses humor and wit to reveal the flaws in society, in individuals in society, and in human nature. Although it may hope to engender change and reform, it does not need to propose solutions. The satirist may employ a hodgepodge of styles and devices with a tone ranging from fairly mild humor to brutal irony. It may require the reader to have a strong stomach and it may put the author at considerable risk if it offends those in authority. Satires are both topical (sometimes requiring footnotes for modern readers and audiences) and universal (recognizable to all). The Eighteenth Century in Britain was one of the great ages of satire, and Jonathan Swift was the greatest prose satirist of that era. This discussion class will begin with an introduction to satire and some discussion of early Roman satires and then will focus on Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels (the greatest and most accessible of his satires). We will discuss Swift’s contemporary targets as well as the universal nature of the flaws he reveals, and will consider some of the questions raised about the range of his disillusionment. We will also allow some time to discuss recent exercises in satire and other satirical possibilities. I strongly recommend the Norton Critical edition of Gulliver’s Travels because of its useful footnotes and good background material. If you use another edition please look for an adult version with footnotes. Class limit: 20
Ann Nesslage is a graduate of Vassar with a master’s degree in British literature from Bryn Mawr. Ann retired from Choate Rosemary Hall where she taught different levels of English including British literature and British Studies. She also created electives including a course in early Irish and Welsh literature and mythology. Ann purchased her home in Bremen in early 1970’s and moved there full time in 2008. She is an active gardener, an avid reader, and enjoys writing.
The Rebellious Art of the Dutch Golden Age
8 Thursdays, 10:30 – 12:30, April 4 – June 6, no class May 16 and 23
Dutch painters endeavored to reproduce space, color, volume, and light as faithfully as possible; they sought to capture nature exactly as they found it. While the art in Italy was idealized or courtly, and that of Spain was sorrowful and reverential, Northern art was unvarnished, intense and dispassionate, echoing their temperament. It was about everyday life – essentially pragmatic, neither whimsical nor foreboding; and yet their artistry was equally superb. The Italian art of the 15th century was based on mathematically calculated linear perspective; Dutch art was determined by empirical knowledge. The Dutch rejected the hierarchy of genres, mastered light in its many forms, and made use – long before Leonardo – of aerial and color perspective. They focused on detailed everyday themes that formed the basis for the Golden Age of Dutch Realism; they painted nature as it is, not as it ought to be, and captured, mostly, the jocular side of life. They reproduced the world’s realities through meticulous observation of all things, and they painted exactly what they saw, with shocking, even crude realism. Class limit: 20
Antoinette Pimentel has a degree in biochemistry, but grew up among pigments, easels and brushes, since her father was an artist, a printer, and an engraver. Her travels made her turn to art as science requires a more sedentary life. She attended the Kunsternes hus in Oslo, Norway, and the Volksuniversiteit in Amsterdam, Nederland. She has taught history of art and art appreciation for several years in a variety of settings.
We Know Where You Live: The Surveillance State
6 Tuesdays, 9:30 – Noon, April 9 – May 14
Today, one of the greatest challenges our democracy faces is reconciling our seemingly incompatible values of freedom and privacy. As Americans, we feel very strongly that we have a right to protect our privacy against commercial and government intrusion. At the same time, we expect our government to protect us from internal and external threats and we reluctantly acknowledge that to do so the government must engage in surveillance. As a capitalist-based economy, we give business freedom to market, yet the internet seems to have gone far beyond what many feel is appropriate with respect to collecting and using our personal information. This course examines the scope and methods used by American and foreign governments and commercial interests to obtain our private information and how our courts and legislatures try to balance privacy rights with the need for security and legitimate business interests. We will also look at how Americans are pushing back on what they believe are violations of privacy rights. One teaching goal of this course is to better inform ourselves about the history, issues, and the law of surveillance to the extent one wishes to influence the debate and be an informed citizen. Class limit: 28
Paul Somoza has spent forty years in different aspects of hospital administration, most recently as Director of Education and Organization Development at Maine General Medical Center. Paul has a law degree from Fordham and a masters in health care administration from the University of Pittsburgh. He lives in Newcastle with his wife Kay Ann.
Creating with Collage
6 Tuesdays, 10:00 – 1:00, April 9 – May 14
Collage is the art of cutting paper up and gluing it together to make pictures. It is incredibly fun, and incredibly addictive! Come join us in unleashing and expressing your spirit of play, as we explore the medium by doing a variety of exercises guaranteed to get your creative juices flowing. Creating pieces takes us painlessly into the territory of art basics, such as composition, texture, abstraction, and color vs black and white. In addition to making our own collages, we will play with each others’ by starting a piece, then passing it on to someone else to finish – the results are always a delightful surprise to all. This class is always a relaxing social time, and we always take time to look at and share our thoughts about our work in a supportive, non-judgmental atmosphere. One of the many joys of this medium is that no prior experience is needed to jump in and have success right away. All you need is a pair of scissors, a glue stick, stuff to cut up, and your readiness to play! (I will bring printed material, and you should too.) Class limit: 15
Deborah Stevenson was born in Washington, DC. She grew up in Tokyo, went to high school in Baltimore, and got her BA from Sarah Lawrence College in 1975. She lived for many years on the West Coast, until returning east to live in New York until 2015, when she relocated to Belfast. Deborah’s collage art has been in featured in exhibitions and publications both here and abroad. She has been teaching art for many years, most recently as a guest artist at Shakerag Workshops in Tennessee. With a background in both theatre and art, Deborah has a talent for working with people, putting them at ease and exciting them about their own abilities and strengths.
Aeneas, Hero or Cad?
6 Tuesdays, 10:00 – Noon April 9 – May 14
From the first century until the middle of the twentieth century, the Aeneid was the most important book in the canon read by every educated person. It undergirded the imperial aspirations of Western nations – from imperial Rome to the British Empire and even the aspirations of the United States and its “manifest destiny.” But it is an ambiguous work: “duteous Aeneas” is a less than admirable hero, and it is not clear whether Vergil is presenting an apology for Rome’s imperial aspirations or a critique of them. We will work from Fagels’ translation, available in paperback (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition, ISBN 978-0-14-310513-6). Students should read the first two books for the first session. Class Limit: 13
Byron Stuhlman is a retired Episcopal minister with a doctorate in theology and the author of six books. He was a member of the faculty of Hamilton College and the General Theological Seminary. Prior to moving to Maine, he taught at the Mohawk Valley Institute for Learning in Retirement (Utica, NY). Byron has served as the chair of the CSC board and chair of its curriculum committee as well as teaching a good number of courses.
A Guided Tour of Cosmic Space and Time
6 Thursdays, 10:00 – Noon, April 18 – May 23
Exoplanets, stars, galaxies, black holes, the big bang, dark matter and dark energy: we will explore our universe, its beginning, evolution, our place in it, and our likely fate. In addition to discussing some of the mind-boggling discoveries of modern astronomy, we will explore how we know what we know, and the limits of our knowledge. We will use the book Origins, Fourteen Billion Years of Cosmic Evolution by Neil deGrasse Tyson and Donald Goldsmith as our guide on the voyage. No scientific expertise is required, but an inquiring and expandable mind is a prerequisite. Class limit: 65
Ted Williams is a retired professional astronomer, professor emeritus of physics and astronomy at Rutgers University, former director of the South African Astronomical Observatory, and researcher in observational extra-galactic astronomy and development of astronomical instrumentation.
The Moon Landings – What was the Point?
6 Mondays, 10:00 – Noon, April 8 – May 13
Yes, it was fifty years ago when men first landed on the Moon. Many if not most of us were glued to the television at the time watching the developments, hour by hour. There was a huge sigh of relief when the crew returned safely to Earth, bringing with them the precious rock samples and the iconic images. This course will take us back to revisit why we went on that hazardous journey and ponder why we have not been back since. Are the reasons for going still valid, and if not, are there any new reasons for doing so? This course is at least as much about the people as it is about the missions. What were the thoughts of those who undertook the missions (there were 24 in all) both at the time and subsequently? For the astronauts, going to the Moon must have been the ultimate high, achieved when they were about 40 years old. What can you do with the rest of your life after you have been to the Moon? You’ll find out what subsequently happened to all of these first Moon explorers. These and other matters related to the Apollo missions will be discussed in the course, using period news sources, audios and other memorabilia, as well as personal insights from the instructor’s interactions with 20 of the 24 Moon travelers. The instructor’s book Afterglow – Reflections on the Golden Age of Moon Explorers will be referred to although it is not necessary to obtain a copy. Class limit: 20
Derek Webber is the author of a trilogy of non-fiction books about the space business and exploration, based upon his 50 years of experience in commercial space developments both in the UK and the US. He is a former space engineer and negotiated multi-million-dollar satellite communications contracts before focusing on the marketing and regulatory aspects of the space tourism business. He has been a volunteer docent at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington DC, was vice chair of the judges panel for the Google Lunar XPRIZE, a competition designed to encourage non-governmental attempts to land on the Moon, and is now on the Leadership Board of ForAllMoonkind, a non-profit aimed at obtaining international agreement to protect the Lunar heritage sites.
What’s Up with the Artificial Intelligence explosion?
6 Thursdays, 1:30-3:30, April 25 – May 30
Artificial Intelligence has gone from science fiction to reality. It is starting to profoundly change our way of life. Some see it as a promise, others as a threat. We will look at how philosophers, scientists and other scholars view the phenomenon. To prepare for each session participants may read a recommended article or story, and/or watch some videos. They will be available as links from the study group web page. In class we will discuss the assignment and take up further examples. There are no right or wrong answers. The experts themselves are divided. Please join the discussion. Class limit: 20
Michael Werner is a retired computer science professor from Wentworth Institute of Technology. He has a PhD in computer science from Northeastern University. Michael has long involvement with computers starting in 1963. His recent teaching specialties have been in programming languages and 3D graphics on Android phones. Lately his interests have shifted to the philosophical implications of the computer revolution. Michael taught Exploring the Gift at Instituto Allende’s Life Long Learning program as well as five study groups at Tufts University’s Osher program.