LLARC Study Groups At a Glance - Spring 2017

9:15AM - 10:45AM
9:15AM - 10:45AM
9:15AM - 10:45AM
9:15AM - 10:45AM

Creative Writing Work­shop

The Age of Jackson-CLOSED


The Story Behind the Mexican War   CLOSED

Turmoil in the Arab World * CLOSED

Three Weddings, No Funerals, and Man Turned into an Ass: A Midsummer Nights Dream*

Constitutional Law; The Amendments CLOSED

Current Issues in Government and Society*


Staying Afloat in the 21st Century*

Astronomy: Get a Grip on the Universe

11:00AM - 12:30PM
11:00AM - 12:45PM
11:00AM - 12:30PM
11:00AM - 12:30PM

Opera for Everyone!*  CLOSED

How on Earth: The Amazing Story of New England Geology* 


Discovering the Cosmos, Discovering Ourselves *

Great Gatsby CLOSED

Lunch Listen and Learn Lecture Series

The Women's Rights Story in Film and Modern Media


The Poetry Mystique

Sports and Film



Mysteries Part V

Income Inequality in the United States; What's Happening and Why?*



1:00PM - 2:30PM
1:00PM - 2:30PM
1:00PM - 2:30PM
1:00PM - 2:30PM

The O. Henry Prize Stories of 2015

¡¡Hab­lemos Español!!*

The House of Medici CLOSED

Play Reading*

My Life, My Stories

Power and Principle

Sports and Film (continued)

Learn to Read Artwork for a Better Museum Experience CLOSED



The World's Greatest Masterpieces CLOSED


*Denotes a Mini Course - Please see course description for dates.

General Information

Most study groups meet for 10 weeks, mini courses meet for 5 or 6 weeks. Please note the specific meeting dates given for each course. Locations of classes will be announced shortly before classes begin. Study groups are typically "led" rather than "taught"— all by volunteers. Most use a seminar format, emphasizing discussion, usually with preparatory reading. There are variables, however, such as the amount and nature of weekly preparation, the opportunity or expectation for class members to give presentations, and the extent to which material is presented by the leader. Please read descriptions carefully for these details. Also note costs for materials provided (other than texts, which students should buy independently.)


Classes fill up! Apply early for best chances of getting into the study groups you want. Enrollments continue thereafter on a first-come, first-served basis.

  1. Who may join. LLARC welcomes mature men and women of all faiths and backgrounds.
  2. Register by mail using the enrollment form in this brochure, or go to our Web site for a printable enrollment form (print extras for friends!) See
  3. Choose from two levels of participation. (1) Basic annual membership, including the Lunch, Listen & Learn program; or (2) Basic annual membership plus enrollment for the current semester in one or more seminars.
  4. You must be a member to enroll in courses and enjoy other benefits of membership. The membership fee is annual and is valid from September 1, 2016 to August 31, 2017.
  5. The flat tuition rate covers all your study groups for the semester. Space is limited in all classes, however, so enrollment is not guaranteed. (Also, a study group may be cancelled if enrollment is insufficient.) We strongly encourage you to make alternate selections in case your top choices are filled. Don’t forget to indicate the total number of study groups in which you wish to be enrolled.
  6. Registrations will be processed beginning on January 8. All applications submitted by that date will be regarded equally for purposes of assigning places in each study group. Applications may be submitted early (and this is encouraged) but they will not be acted upon before January 8. On that date, if any study group is oversubscribed, enrollment will be by lottery. Anyone not enrolled will be placed on a waiting list.
  7. Confirmations will be mailed out weekly beginning January 15. We will confirm you initially for up to two study groups, if space is available. If we are then able to enroll you in an additional selection, we will telephone you and send you a supplemental confirmation. Study group leaders will communicate any preparation necessary for the first class meeting.
  8. Additional costs. you are responsible for the cost of books and other materials. Typically, you are expected to obtain books on your own and to buy other materials from the leader in class.

LLARC Study Group Course Descriptions

Spring 2017

#2501 Creative Writing Workshop

In this writing group, the creative talents of the participants will be encouraged by their peers. Members are invited to write in any genre:memoir, poetry, fiction, non-fiction, essay, humor or play. Handouts will be provided to stimulate writing. Participants are given time to share their writings with classmates if they choose. Sometimes in talking about someone else’s writing, we are able to clarify our own thoughts and abilities;and this group is wonderfully encouraging, supportive and safe.

Leader: Virginia Slep holds a BA and an MA in English, and taught high school English for 35 years before her retirement. She has been teaching this writing class at LLARC since 2008. She writes a regular column for the North Reading Transcript. Virginia has a PhD in Clinical Hypnosis, and has a private practice in Wayland.

Class Meetings: Ten Mondays; February 27 – May 8; No classes on April 17 (Patriots Day); 9:15 – 10:45am


#2502 The Age of Jackson CLOSED

Americans struggled among themselves over the meaning of the American Revolution, over the Constitution, over republicanism vs. democracy. Despite his contradictions Jackson came to be regarded as the embodiment of the democratic ideal. He feared that the British and their American allies and imitators — defiant Indians, bloated financiers, sectional extremists — threatened to undo the American Revolution and Constitution. He aligned himself with the forces of change rather than order, on the side of equalitarianism and against privilege. He said, “I was born for a storm and a calm does not suit me.” Class preparation would be one to two hours. The class format will be discussion enhanced by PowerPoint presentations and relevant media. No reports will be required but class participation will be encouraged and expected.

Reading: American Lion, by John Meacham, Pbk, $12.24, ISBN 978-0-8129-7346-4

Leader: Bernie Shuster earned a BA in history and a LLD at Boston University School of Law. He practiced law for several years as a partner in a Boston firm and then founded and served as COO of a financial services firm. He has led several courses at LLARC and HILR.

Class Meetings: Ten Mondays; February 27 – May 8; No classes on April 17 (Patriots Day); 9:15 – 10:45am


#2503 Opera for Everyone! CLOSED

This course will concentrate on three pre-HD performances: Antonín Dvorak’s Rusalka, (HD Encore on January 25, 2017 at 6:30pm), Giuseppe Verdi’s popular La Traviata (in HD on March 11 at 1:00pm), Peter Tchaikovky’s Eugene Onegin (in HD on April 22 at 1:00pm), and Charles Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette as well as Giuseppe Verdi’s Macbeth, both based on Shakespeare plays.

Leader: Erika Reitshamer, born and raised in Germany, is an engaging teacher, whose knowledge and love of opera will inspire all, and her open style and sense of humor are irresistible. She has lectured on opera and great singers of opera for many years and was active in the formation of the Boston Lyric Opera Company more than 40 years ago. She is the former VP of the Boston Wagner Society and teacher of opera appreciation for WISE at Assumption College and Sherborn Lifelong Learning. She illustrates her lectures with DVDs, slides and audio CDs. This is her 4th year of teaching for LLARC.

Class Meetings: Five Mondays; February 27 – March 27; 11:00am – 12:30pm*


#2504 How on Earth; The Amazing History of New England Geology CLOSED

Did you know? There have been at least four mountain-building events in New England that have created mountains as high as the Alps. Sediment underlying the Boston area was deposited by glaciers at the South Pole! Bedrock under eastern Massachusetts is more closely related to that of Africa than to the bedrock of Worcester! The New England climate in the past was tropical and the landscape was equatorial swampland! And we can see it all around us if we know where to look. From volcanoes to earthquakes; from glacial lakes to distorted rocks, we have it all! Join us for an engaging and fun look at the New England landscape.

Leader: Frank Villa has a lifelong interest in the natural sciences. He is a natural teacher who finds great joy in explaining complex principles and processes and bringing the latest quests and discoveries of science to a general audience. He has developed curricula and taught courses in many settings on topics as diverse as the formation of the universe, alternative energy sources and human genetics.

Class Meetings: Five Mondays; February 27 – March 27; 11:00am – 12:30pm*


#2505 Discovering the Cosmos, Discovering Ourselves; A Historical Approach to Science and the History of Western Thought CLOSED

From the watchtowers of ancient Babylon to the Hubble Space telescope; from Incan priests to Albert Einstein, new discoveries about the cosmos have changed the human experience. Our ancestors probed the mysteries of the universe to discover their place in it, to answer profound questions about origins and survival. Even modern scientists speak of “knowing the mind of God”. This course will trace the history of these discoveries as they unfolded and discuss how they affected the ways we think about religion, the search for knowledge, and the meaning of human existence.

Leader: Frank Villa has a lifelong interest in the natural sciences. He is a natural teacher who finds great joy in explaining complex principles and processes and bringing the latest quests and discoveries of science to a general audience. He has developed curricula and taught courses in many settings on topics as diverse as the formation of the universe, alternative energy sources and human genetics.

Class Meetings: Five Mondays; April 3 – May 8; No classes on April 17 (Patriots Day); 11:00am – 12:30pm*


#2506 Great Gatsby: What Was Gatsby's Dream? Does it Seem Familiar a Century Later? CLOSED

In the 1920's, F. Scott Fitzgerald set out to write the "great American novel", and many would agree that he succeeded.  What were the values his novel reflected? Why have his prose and the “green light” endured in almost mythic form? Why do some claim the novel is “all about the billboard!”? Dust off your old copy of Gatsby or read it for the first time and join in a critical reading of this remarkable work, accompanied by selections from varied film versions of the novel and the author’s recorded sensibilities of why he believed it was a true reflection of his times.

Leader: Diane Proctor has been a writer and a teacher of both literature and writing throughout her professional life. She has taught at Milton Academy, the Hotchkiss School, and the Middlesex School. She has taught several classes at Regis College’s Lifelong Learning Program.

Class Meetings: Five Mondays; April 3 – May 8; No classes on April 17(Patriots Day); 11:00am – 12:30pm*


#2507 The O. Henry Prize Stories of 2015 CLOSED

short fiction. The prize winning stories in this collection were chosen by Laura Furman, Series Editor, from thousands published in literary magazines. These stories span the globe — from an Eastern European shtetl to a tiny village in Thailand. Their characters are universally recognizable and utterly compelling, whether they are migrant workers crossing the Mexican border or Armenian immigrants on the rough streets of East Hollywood. Authors include Russell Banks, Lydia Davis, Thomas Pierce and Elizabeth Strout. We will read stories found in The O’Henry Prize Stories of 2015 which can be ordered on Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

Participants will be assigned one story each week. We have found it is helpful to read the story at least twice.

Leader: Joan Parrish is an experienced group leader with a master’s degree in Adult-Education from Boston University and a master’s in Theology from Episcopal Divinity School. She has taught courses for adults and children in a variety of settings, including short story courses for LLARC.

Class Meetings: Ten Mondays; February 27 – May 8; No classes on April 17 (Patriots Day); 1:00 – 2:30pm


#2508 ¡¡Hablemos Español!!*

Spanish is fast becoming a second language in the U.S. This small, informal class is designed to enhance speaking skills and improve grammar. It will be conducted at an intermediate rather than beginner level. We also read literature, preferably short stories, and discuss their contents. Therefore it will be necessary to buy some books. In addition, a Spanish-English dictionary will be very helpful.

Leader: Aida Dudelson was born and grew up in Montevideo, Uruguay. She received a BA in liberal arts at the University of Montevideo. Shortly after moving to the United States with her family, she worked in the foreign department of a Boston bank. She then volunteered at New England Medical Center, translating for Spanish-speaking patients. She has taught at Wellesley High School as a short- and long-term substitute and has tutored privately for the past 26 years.

Class Meetings: Six Mondays; March 27– May 8; No classes on April 17 (Patriots Day); 1:00 – 2:30pm


#2509 Turmoil in the Arab World CLOSED

We will explore the recent events relative to turmoil in the Arab world (governments, organizations and the “street”), its intermediate term viability, and reaction both in the Arab world and in the West. We will also discuss how the continuation of indigenous organizations have affected the Arab world; what the West is doing/not doing relative to threats to civilized norms and our personal sense of security.

Reading: TBA

Leader: Jack Miller is a retired engineer with teaching experience in engineering, mathematics, business, and LLARC history classes. Jack’s lifelong interest in world history focuses this class on recent events relative to ISIS and how the existence of ISIS has affected the Arab Spring and our own lives.

Class Meetings: Five Tuesdays; April 4 – May 2; 9:15 – 10:45am*


#2510 The Story Behind the Mexican War CLOSED

The Mexican War provided Americans with the ability to use the phrase “From sea to shining sea” but at what cost? While we won’t be studying the battles of the war we will be delving into Mexican History. What was this country to the south and why is it so different from the USA? What role did Polk play in the war? How does a country that had just received its independence from Spain a mere 25 years earlier react when their neighbors to the North begin an invasion of their territory? Utilizing a DVD and PowerPoint programs, these questions and more will be answered as we work our way through the history of the War. Access to a computer to receive emails and view YouTube videos will be necessary for successful completion of the course.

Reading: A Glorious Defeat: Mexico and Its War with the United States by Timothy J. Henderson, 2007, Hill and Wang

Leader: Mary Egan is an experienced study group leader who has offered previous courses dealing with the First Ladies: from Martha Washington through Bess Truman. A retired principal with 34 years of experience on the elementary and secondary level, she has nurtured a lifelong interest in history and enjoys cultivating and sharing her knowledge. Her last search for knowledge led her to the Mexican War and she is eager to share what she has learned.

Class Meetings: Ten Tuesdays; February 28 – May 2; 9:00 – 10:45am (Please note the early start time)


#2511 Three Weddings, No Funerals and Man Turned into an Ass: A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare

One of Shakespeare’s most charming plays features embattled lovers, a love potion gone wrong, fairies, enchantments, and the longest, funniest “death” scene ever. We’ll see how Shakespeare weaves multiple story lines together to create an alternately serious and light-hearted look at love as he, eventually, guides three couples to the altar. There will be an option of attending a performance of the play by the Actor’s Shakespeare Project.

Leader: Ann Berman is a former special education teacher who, while still working part time, is happy to be able to spend more time reading, seeing, and teaching about Shakespeare’s works.

Class Meetings: Five Tuesdays; April 25 – May 23; Please note the dates; 9:15 – 10:45am*


#2512 The House of Medici CLOSED

Learn about the fascinating era of intrigue, mystery, usury, murder, assassinations, incest, fraud, villains, poison rings, mistresses, etc. The time of the Renaissance and its familiar figures such as Michelangelo and da Vinci. The era of Brunelleschi’s Dome and the existence of three popes at the same time. The House of Medici which once was the wealthiest family in the world was outwardly or subliminally involved with all of the above. They ruled Florence, had control of the papacy and the family produced four Popes. The Medici originated the Medici Bank which became the largest in Europe and was the forerunner of international banking and accounting. This was an extraordinary family that directly influenced the Renaissance as well as the policies of an entire continent from their base in Florence, Rome and Tuscany. We will also touch on “the very evil Borgia family” and Martin Luther’s Protestant Reformation.

The format will consist of class discussions of weekly readings from Hibbert’s text, handouts and DVDs.

Reading: The House of Medici: Its Rise and Fall by Christopher Hibbert

Leader: Bill Brady has a BS from Boston College, a MSPH from the University of Massachusetts and a DDS from the University of Maryland. He has been a member of BCLIR and LLARC for the past 16 years. He has been a SGL at LLARC for the past six years.

Class Meetings: Ten Tuesdays; February 28 – May 2; 1:00 – 3:00pm


#2513 My Life, My Stories

We humans have been telling stories about ourselves since our very early ancestors painted theirs on the walls and ceilings of caves, retelling the hunts of bison and other large animals. And although it’s a long distance from ochre dabbling to writing memoir, we’re still at it. We’ve never stopped explaining ourselves, our aspirations, our disappointments, whether in tribal tales, biblical allegories, fairy tales or classical mythology. So what are those stories we tell; what are they really about; how do they influence (or not) the way we’ve lived our lives? Not entirely different from writing creative memoir, however, this class’s emphasis will be on the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves and the stories we tell others about ourselves. What are the theme-songs of our lives: what are their origins: do we live according to those self-beliefs, do they become self-fulfilling? The structure of the class will remain, as usual, writing at home, reading in class and group critiquing.

Class size limited to ten.

Leader: Mimi Aarens has been facilitating creative memoir workshops for more than ten years, with groups at Boston College and Tufts University and Regis Lifelong Learning Centers. In addition, she has facilitated workshops at senior and local adult education centers and the Rowe Conference Center in western Massachusetts. In addition to her writing classes, Mimi works in mosaic art.

Class Meetings: Ten Tuesdays; February 28 – May 2; 1:00 – 2:30pm


#2514 Power and Principle

We will examine the issues of power and principle as they are presented in these works. When a person of conscience comes up against the powers that be and has to decide whether or not to stand up against them, the struggle can be difficult and can cost them a lot — sometimes even their lives. Often the principle of moderation is the first thing to go. Sometimes, however, the sides of good and evil are not as clear as they might first seem. What happens when two “goods” clash? The answers are not always obvious, as we examine the thorny moral issues that these works raise. Participants will be expected to find the texts on their own and do the weekly reading/viewing (approximately one work a week, with two weeks for Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar).

List of Materials:  Sophocles’ Antigone, Anouilh’s Antigone, Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, Bolt’s A Man for All Seasons, Ibsen’s Enemy of the People, Shulberg’s On the Waterfront, Miller’s The Crucible, Shanley’s Doubt: A Parable, and a documentary entitled, Edward Snowden - Terminal F.

Leader: Ronna Frick retired after teaching high school English for 40 years, the last nine also serving as the English Department Head at Wellesley High School. Having previously been a SGL for numerous LLARC courses including ones on Jane Austen, the Bible as Literature, Comedy & Tragedy, Novellas, Multi-Cultural short stories as well as other topics, she looks forward to another meaningful and fun experience with other lifelong learners!

Class Meetings: Ten Tuesdays; February 28 – May 2; 1:00 – 2:30pm 


#2515 Playreading

Enter the exciting world of Drama! We will explore/dissect some of the greatest plays ever written. From Aristophanes to Albee come feel the emotions of fear, anger, revenge, hope and love. This six week course will focus on three plays. Plays will be announced before the first session.

Leader: John Archer is a trained singer, actor, musician and veteran of straight and musical theater productions for many different companies in New England. John runs a business in Beverly and is an active civic leader and philanthropist for several arts organizations. He has led play reading courses at North Shore community venues and study groups for LLARC since 2005.

Class Meetings: Six Tuesdays; March 28 – May 2; 1:00 – 2:30pm*


#2516 Constitutional Law; The Amendments CLOSED

The more we understand the U.S. Constitution’s contents, the more we come to recognize how It affects our daily activities. This class will deepen appreciation of the 225-year-old document through examination/discussion of its amendments. Topics Include: Bill of Rights, course corrections, due process/equal protection, progressive era. A free copy of the Constitution is provided.

Leader: Steve Lowe is a former Wayland High School teacher and radio producer. He has presented writing workshops for students and teachers throughout New England. He is the author of three published books. In retirement he continues to share what he’s learned about aspects of the U.S. Constitution.

Class Meetings: Ten Wednesdays; March 1 – May 3; 9:15 – 10:45am


#2517 Current Issues in Government and Society

The election season of 2016 produced a number of issues that many of us wanted to talk about with others, from charter schools to the role of the President. This study group will give us an opportunity to research and discuss a variety of political, economic, social, and ethical subjects. Each class session will begin with a review and discussion of current events as reported weekly by the media. Participants are invited to bring at least one current issue topic to class for this open discussion each week. During the remainder of each session, individual participants will be asked to deliver a 5- to 10-minute presentation on a current issue previously chosen. Three to four topics will be presented and discussed every week.

Each participant is expected to make at least one presentation during the course.

Leaders: Glenn Strehle has previously led three mini-courses and one intersession course. He is retired as Treasurer Emeritus of MIT and continues to serve on pubic, charitable, and foundation boards. Katherine Strehle has previously co-led two mini courses. She has been involved with LLARC since its founding and has served as an elected member of the Weston School Committee.

Class Meetings: Five Wednesdays; April 5 – May 3; 9:15 – 10:45am*


#2518 Sports and Film

Why are there so many award-winning movies about sports? They are inspirational, funny and make us think. Many of these movies have received Academy Award nominations and Oscars. The course will highlight ten of these movies. We will watch the movie and have a discussion after each one is shown. A few of the films we may watch are: The Pride of the Yankees, Chariots of Fire, Moneyball, Brian’s Song, Hoosiers, Breaking Away and Field of Dreams. You will be supplied readings and discussion questions prior to the movie by email. The course will run for two consecutive time periods. Readings should take approximately an hour per week.

Leader: Irwin Silver received a Bachelor of Science Degree from Northeastern University. After 46 years in the investment industry, he retired as a First Vice President-Investments from a national investment firm. He was also an adjunct professor at Northeastern University. Irwin has taught film classes at LLARC as well as at other lifelong learning programs.

Class Meetings: Ten Wednesdays; March 1 – May 3; 11:00 – 2:30pm

(The class will meet for two time periods, taking a break for lunch.)

#2519 The Poetry Mystique

This course will explore several questions that arise concerning poetry. These include but are not limited to: “Why does one poem speak to one’s soul while another leaves one cold?” “Why is one poem or poet considered part of the canon of literature while another poem or poet is not?” Participants will bring in poems to share and discuss each week, as will the instructor. These need not be confined to poems we love, but ones that are perhaps confusing or ones that are disliked but are critically acclaimed.  Participants are responsible for bringing enough copies for the entire class

Leader: Pam Kyrka is a recently retired high school English teacher with years of experience teaching literature and writing in Lexington, Natick, and Mendon-Upton. She also writes children’s literature, including picture books and both middle grade and young adult fiction.

Class Meetings: Five Wednesdays; April 5 – May 3; 11:00 – 12:30pm*


#2520 The Women's Rights Story in Film and Modern Media CLOSED

Our study group will consider the history of the Women’s Rights movement in America as portrayed in modern media, including television, film, and internet sites. We will critique written, oral and visual works about the women themselves, and about their movement towards equal rights. Using both visual and printed materials, voluntary reports and discussion, we will broaden our knowledge about the history of particular groups and individual women and their contributions to the movement, including the historical achievements of women in the 2012 election and the successes and failures of the 2016 election.

Readings: (suggested, but not mandatory) Not for Ourselves Alone by Geoffrey C. Ward and Ken Burns; and The Ladies of Seneca Falls by Miriam Gurko. A basic overview can be found in Rightfully Ours: How Women Won the Vote by Kerrie Logan Hollihan.

Leader: Mary Nowak has an AB and an MA in American History from Boston University and was a teacher of American history and US and World Geography in Brookline. She has previously led LLARC study groups: Northern and Southern Women in the Civil War, The Women’s Rights Movement, Women and Children in the Labor Movement, and Japanese Internment in World War II.

Class Meetings: Ten Wednesdays; March 1 – May 3; 11:00 – 12:30pm


#2521 Learn to Read Artwork for a Better Museum Experience CLOSED

What does this painting mean? Why is this in a museum? Ever have these questions in an art exhibit? In this course you will learn to read paintings and other artworks by exploring subject, form and content components. We’ll study elements of art and principles of design through extensive projected art examples and discussions, covering several topics each week. Readings about artists (to be found online), will be assigned each week, adding art historical context to the net class’s discussion. Participants will learn to form a personal Interpretation of artwork and develop tools to maximize their enjoyment of a wide variety of artworks and to prepare themselves for a better experience when visiting an art museum.

Leader: Judith Scott has been a guide at the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum for 10 years and a docent at Danforth Art Museum and School for 15 years. She has conducted numerous tours and taught a significant portion of the Danforth New Docent class for more than 5 years. She is a lifelong amateur painter and a retired senior manager in the computer industry.

Class Meetings: Ten Wednesdays; March 1 – May 3; 1:00 – 2:30pm


#2522 Staying Afloat in the 21st Century

Our culture is changing so rapidly that it is difficult to keep up and feel connected. Social media shows itself in new forms every day: email, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc. A high percentage of long-term relationships are made online through dating sites and phone apps; families live miles apart; face to face communication is at an all-time low. Books are giving way to digital media and reality is becoming “virtual”. How do we cope? Where and what are the positives? Hopefully, this course will explore ways to generate “awe” and happiness in our everyday lives while developing a better   understanding of the world we live in.

Leader: A native Los Angeline, Nan Feldon brought to the East Coast her passionate love of film and books, and a mind and heart open to diversity. She also brought with her a BA in English and a lifelong secondary teaching credential from UCLA. She has taught high school in inner city LA and in Newton, MA. All her life she has facilitated learning, and has led Mothers and Daughters in Perspective, India; The Blind Man and the Elephant, and other literature course at LLARC.

Class Meetings: Five Thursdays; April 6 – May 4; 9:15 – 10:45am*


#2523 Astronomy: Get a Grip on the Universe

The course will focus on answering “How do we know that?” on many topics including: how astrology becomes astronomy and the awe and wonder that started it all; How far away? The solar system and beyond; feeling small? stars, galaxies, clusters, and more; light, squeezing information from this speedy messenger; birth to death, the long life of stars; the galactic zoo, Ripley would not believe it; Exobiology, anybody home? Do they speak English? and Cosmology. We hope to have one or two evenings of telescope viewing as well!

Readings: Suggested readings and websites from the internet and a bibliography of magazine articles and books for those interested in further education.

Leader: Jim McLaren is a retired science teacher and department head at Newton South High School. He taught all subjects but primarily biology. Jim authored a high school biology textbook for D.C. Heath Publishing. He is a lifelong amateur astronomer and general science nerd.

Class Meetings: Ten Thursdays; March 2 – May 4; 9:15 – 10:45am


#2524 Mysteries Part V

This session will continue a look at mysteries set in or written by authors in other countries. We will also look at characters kept ‘alive’ by current writers using them, mysteries set in religious settings and some short stories. Reading list will be available as soon as registration takes place. Read ahead and take notes!

Leader: Karen Mallozzi is an avid reader. She holds a BA from the University of Rhode Island (1981) and a master’s in religious studies concentrating in religion and the arts from Andover-Newton Theological School (2010). She constantly reads and is delighted to be doing another round of mysteries for LLARC as well as other topics and literary works. Karen is currently the Director of Parish Ministries at St. Bridget Parish in Framingham.

Class Meetings: Ten Thursdays; March 2 – May 4; 11:00am – 12:30pm


#2525 Income Inequality in the United States; What's Happening and Why? CLOSED

In this course, we will look at how income trends over the last 40 years differ from past experience and compare with those in other countries. We will examine commonly proposed explanations for these patterns, including technological change, trade and the decline in unionization. We will zero in on why the top one percent has prospered so much, as well as factors holding back those at the bottom. We will discuss what might be done about increased inequality and the implications for overall growth.

Leader: Lynn Browne was Executive Vice President and Economic Advisor at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. As an economist, she focused on New England and economic crises. She has taught LLARC courses on the Federal Reserve and New England’s economic history.

Class Meetings: Five Thursdays; March 2 – March 30; 11:00am – 12:30pm*


#2526 The Worlds' Greatest Masterpieces CLOSED

They’re the images and words we can’t forget: “Mona Lisa,” “Casablanca,” “David,” Fallingwater, “It was the best of times…,” “I have a dream…”. Masterpieces all. Each week you will see masterpieces from one of the arts: painting, sculpture, the decorative arts, architecture, film, product design, graphic art, the written word and the spoken word. Learn what makes them the best of the best — why a speech inspires us, a tower captivates us, or a sculpture moves us. See how six words brought a nation to its feet, how light and color were the unsung stars of “The Godfather,” and how a design masterpiece was created in a taxi. And, tell us what you think. What do you like? Why do you like it?

Leader: Steve Kendall is the retired president of an advertising and public relations agency; the mentor of women and teens who are starting businesses; a trainer of art museum tour guides; and the leader of more than 400 tours at the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum and the Danforth Museum. His tours are inquiry-based, eliciting the responses of visitors as they view art in more depth than ever before. This is his fourth LLARC course.

Class Meetings: Ten Thursdays; March 2 – May 4; 1:00 – 2:45pm (Please note dates and end time.)



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