Online registration for spring 2022 will open January 14 at 9 a.m. EST. An email with additional information has been sent to all current members.


Spring 2022

All spring 2022 LLARC courses will be conducted via Zoom.

Most study groups meet for 10 weeks, although several meet for five or six weeks. Please note the specific meeting dates given for each group.

Study groups are typically "led" rather than "taught" - by volunteers or select Regis faculty. 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 group 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 and/or texts, which students should buy independently.

Details

Study groups fill up fast! Register as soon as you can after registration opens for the best chance of getting into the study groups you want.

  1. Who may join? LLARC welcomes mature men and women of all faiths and backgrounds.
  2. Choose from two levels of participation:
    1. Basic annual membership, including the Lunch, Listen and Learn program
    2. Basic annual membership plus enrollment for the current semester in one or more study groups.
  3. 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, 2021 to August 31, 2022.
  4. 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. You may select up to four study groups. If a study group is filled, you will be placed on a waiting list.
  5. After registering, students will receive further instructions about the payment process.
  6. Study group leaders will communicate any preparation necessary for the first class meeting.
  7. Additional costs. You are responsible for the cost of books and other materials.

3201 Creative Writing for Fun - CLOSED

Study Group Leader: Virginia Slep

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Mondays, 9:15 a.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: February 28

End Date: May 9

No Class: April 18 (Patriot’s Day)

Course Description: In this writing-for-fun group, the creative talents of participants will be encouraged by their peers. Members are encouraged to write in any genre: memoir, fiction, non-fiction, poetry, essay or play. Participants are given time each week to share their writing with classmates. This is a light-hearted, supportive, welcoming group whose members enjoy writing for the fun of it. Enrollment is limited to 10 people.

Enrollment Note: No spaces are available for spring 2022. Members may still select the class and will be added to a waitlist.

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.

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3252 Our First Civil War

Study Group Leader: Bernie Shuster

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Thursday, 9:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 3

End Date: May 5

Course Description: Patriots and Loyalists in the American Revolution. The American Revolution wasn’t just a conflict between colonists and redcoats. It was an unforgiving brawl between neighbors. Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Thomas Hutchinson's house in Boston was destroyed by a mob. Benjamin Franklin's son William was imprisoned for political reasons and wasn't allowed to visit his dying wife. Grace Growden Galloway, a prominent Philadelphian, was forcibly evicted from her home when it was confiscated because of her husband's beliefs.

Who were the miscreants who beleaguered these upstanding citizens? In all three cases, they were supporters of American independence from Britain—the very people we now think of as Patriots. Britain’s endeavors to recoup its war debts by taxing the colonists, the passage of the Intolerable Acts, and “a continued disregard for American rights” helped push Washington and Franklin to call for independence.

Required Reading: Our First Civil War by H.W. Brands (ISBN: 9780385546515)

Leader: Bernie Shuster was a history major in undergraduate school where he received a BA degree. He then earned an LLD degree at Boston University School of Law. Bernie practiced law as a partner in a Boston law firm. He later was the founder and CEO of a financial services company. He was a member of Harvard Institute for Learning in Retirement for several years and has led over forty classes at LLARC.

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3253 Women Reformers of the Progressive Era: Their Work, Organizations, Influence, and Legacy

Study Group Leader: Mary Nowak

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Mondays, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: February 28

End Date: May 9

No Class: April 18 (Patriots Day)

Course Description: Most books about the Progressive Era focus on the roles and achievements of men… but many women of this exciting era fought for and implemented great changes! Determined to create a better, kinder world, these women demanded their voices and concerns be heard and heeded. In a time of sweeping and sometimes bewildering progress, these women were attempting to solve big problems of society, implementing new ideas such as settlement houses, insisting upon welfare reforms, demanding protections for industrial workers, improving the juvenile justice system, and improving public health and sanitation.

Required Reading: The study group leader will share reading materials ahead of time.

Leader: Mary Nowak has a BA and MA in American history from Boston University. She taught American history and U.S. and world geography in Brookline. She has led several study groups for LLARC on three of her favorite subjects: women’s history, the roles of women on both sides of the Civil War, women and children in the Labor Movement, and the Japanese Internment by and within the U.S. during WWII.

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3232 Mysteries, Continued

Study Group Leader: Karen Mallozzi

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Wednesdays, 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 2

End Date: May 4

Course Description: Participants will read one book per week with plenty of lead time before the semester begins to get started. Note taking is encouraged and each person must estimate their own reading speed. The book list is provided, and books are in the Minuteman Library system, sometimes on Hoopla and other downloadable sites, or available for purchase secondhand online. Discussion questions will be provided before each class.

Leader: Karen is pleased to be continuing the Mystery Book sessions. She holds a BA from the University of RI 1981, and an MA in religious studies from Andover-Newton Theological School 2012. Along with her gardening, Karen reads constantly and volunteers at the Natick Food Pantry and at Elm Bank.

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3240 Dante's Inferno

Study Group Leader: Kreg Segall

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Wednesdays, 9:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 9

End Date: May 11

Course Description: In this class we shall go to hell. Study the first book of Dante's great medieval masterpiece in English translation: The Inferno. Travel along with Dante through increasingly wretched sinners and find your way to salvation through some of the most glorious poetry ever written. We will spend lots of time enjoying and discussing the story and lingering on the fascinating poetic images, with a lot of historical, cultural, and spiritual context on the side.

The readings are not very long, but they are rich in language and references. Expect a few hours of reading a week.

Required Reading(s): Inferno by Dante Alighieri (Translator: Mandelbaum, Bantam Classic Edition - February 1982, ISBN-10: 0553213393, ISBN-13: 978-0553213393)

Leader: Kreg is a Professor of English at Regis College; he teaches courses on medieval and Renaissance literature. This will be his sixth LLARC class.

Minimum class size: None

Maximum class size: None

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3237 Current Events

Study Group Leader: Muriel Stern Riseman

Session Length: Ten weeks

Day and Time: Tuesdays, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 1

End Date: May 3

Course Description: If you are a person who is interested in world events and likes to have a conversation and exchange ideas about them, LLARC has a class for you. If you want to have a place to share your opinions and thoughts about topics in the news, LLARC has a course for you. It's Current Events!

Through a facilitated discussion, classmates can express ideas about recent happenings, while they listen, learn, and understand the basis for others' opinions. The class discussion is facilitated with guidelines, which enable people to feel comfortable participating. Robust exchanges happen within that framework.

Class members are encouraged to give one short presentation during the semester, about a topic of news's interest to him/her. Usually, presentations are at the beginning of the class, while at the end, recent events that have occurred during the previous week, day, or even hour are discussed.

Leader: Muriel Stern Riseman is a retired high school counselor, and, when working, she particularly enjoyed facilitating conversations between young people and adults. Muriel continued this interest after retirement by leading community support groups. Muriel is also a major "news junkie" and like to absorb as much information as she can about what is happening in the world, share her perceptions, and hear/understand other points of view. For the past four years or so, Muriel has had a wonderful opportunity to promote discussions as a Study Group Leader in Current Events classes.

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3254 Diverse Directors: Visions of America

Student Group Leader: Ronna Frick

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Tuesdays, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 1

End Date: May 3

Course Description: In this 10-week course, we will examine American directors from diverse backgrounds and their movies which give us a vision of America and American values. How do the directors’ race, ethnicity, and/or gender influence their view of the topic? How is diversity represented in the film? Is a sub-culture represented and is there a clash between the dominant culture’s values and the values of the sub-culture? How does the cultural milieu of the time the film was made influence its depiction of the topic? How does the film’s genre (i.e., a comedy vs. drama, for example) change its depiction and its impact? What is the vision of America that the director presents? Each week before we view the film, I will send out a guide to the film, including background information on the director. The films will be streamed on Zoom in the first part of the class, and then after a short break we will discuss the film (on Zoom) through the lens of the questions listed above and on the study guide.

The directors and films we will discuss are: Mira Nair: Mississippi Masala/ The Namesake; Barry Jenkins: Moonlight/If Beale Street Could Talk; Chloe Zhao; The Rider/ Nomadland; Chris Eyre: Smoke Signals; Ang Lee: The Wedding Banquet; Patricia Cardoso: Real Women Have Curves; and Lee Isaac Chung: Minari.

Required Reading: Weekly study guide provided by the group leader.

Leader: Ronna Frick retired after teaching high school English for over 40 years, as well as serving nine years as department chair at Wellesley High School. Having taught many courses at LLARC in literature and in film, she looks forward to another meaningful and fun experience with other lifelong learners in this course, too.

Minimum Class Size: 10

Maximum Class Size: 45

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3255 Gender and Communication

Study Group Leader: Colleen Malachowski

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Tuesdays, 9:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 1

End Date: May 3

Course Description: This learning group will explore the study of communication and gender. Learners will examine how communicative practices contribute to or resist the cultural construction of gender stereotypes. earners will investigate the impact of gender definitions on several relationships through discussion of social, biological, linguistic, and cultural influences. Additionally, learners will study communication behavior similarities and differences between the sexes. Class time will be spent discussing and debating current events relating to gender. Thirty minutes of reading will be required each week before each class reading. No additional costs will be required, as readings will be provided as PDF’s in advance.

Required Reading: Thirty minutes of reading will be required each week before each class reading. No additional costs will be required, as readings will be provided as PDF’s in advance.

Leader: Colleen Malachowski is an associate professor of communication at Regis College.

Minimum Class Size: Eight

Maximum Class Size: 20

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3256 The Origins and Impacts of WWI

Study Group Leader: Bill Koehler

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Fridays, 9:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 4

End Date: May 6

Course Description: The First World War claimed over 20 million lives, redrew maps on three continents, and ushered in world-wide political, cultural, economic, and social upheaval. Through mini-lectures, discussions, readings, and “what-if” exercises, we will explore the numerous, intertwined causes of “The Great War”, briefly review the war years (1914 to 1918), and analyze its cataclysmic global impacts. We will read both current and contemporary accounts of the war and its discontents.

Required Reading: About 30 to 45 minutes of reading will be required each week before every class meeting. No additional costs will be incurred, as readings will be provided as PDF’s in advance.

Leader: Bill Koehler, Dean of the Sloane School of Business and Communication at Regis College, holds a PhD in Modern European History from Brandeis University.

Minimum Class Size: Five

Maximum Class Size: 50

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3257 Pioneer First Ladies

Study Group Leader: Mary Egan

Session Length: 10 sessions

Day and Time: Friday, noon to 1:45 p.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 4

End Date: May 6

Course Description: Join us as we review American history with an added look at the influence of the First Ladies from Martha Washington to Harriet Lane. Utilizing the zoom platform, we will look at the history of the early American Presidencies and the assistance they had from their wives or the women who served as first ladies. It was the women learned the importance of easing communications between opposite sides through an active social life within Washington’s society. You should spend some time before each class researching the individual first ladies online to gain some knowledge about each of them.

Leader: Mary Egan is an experienced study group leader who has developed courses dealing with the First Ladies from Martha Washington through Barbara Bush, The Story Behind the Mexican War and Difficulty Conversations with a Black Man. An educator with 34 years' experience on the elementary and secondary level, she has nurtured a lifelong interest in history and enjoys cultivating and sharing her knowledge of the First Ladies and their husbands.

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3258 Earth, Sea and Sky: The Naturescape of New England

Study Group Leader: Frank Villa

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Wednesdays, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 2

End Date: May 4

Course Description: New England is a special place with wonderful gifts of nature. Vibrant seasons bring delightful sunshine, colorful fall foliage, even fierce winter storms. We live on land shaped by volcanoes and vast glaciers, and we share a partnership with the ocean, its wildlife, and the special ways it affects our existence. In this 10-week course we’ll explore the New England natural world in three parts: the amazing geological history of the land under our feet; the science behind sky vistas shaped in daytime by clouds and weather, and at night by stars and moonlight; and our coastal waters and some of the great animals that live there. As we study the naturescape of the world around us, we learn to appreciate the beauty in our small corner of an amazing planet.

Minimum Class Size: None

Maximum Class Size: Unlimited

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3233 The Short Story

Study Group Leader: Pam Kyrka

Session Length: Five weeks

Day and Time: Tuesdays, 9:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 1

End Date: March 29

Course Description: Novels seem to get more press, but short stories have their own charm. The short story is a snapshot in time, a moment in the main character's life that has some significance for that person. During this five-week class, participants will read and discuss two stories each week for a total of 10 short stories, available on an American Literature web site or online. (To be provided to the participants) Participants should come to class each week prepared to discuss the stories. While the stories vary in length, completion of two per week should be doable.

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.

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3259 Asian Films

Study Group Leader: J. Adrian Zimmer

Session Length: Six weeks

Day and Time: Wednesdays, 9:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 2

End Date: April 6

Course Description: This six-week class covers one feature film from each of Japan, Korea, China, Vietnam, India, and Tibet, zeroing in on culture, cinematography, and human nature. SGMs are expected to watch the films and read two online articles beforehand. Class discussions will be enhanced with video clips. All films are available online -- total cost estimated at $30. In the event a film becomes unavailable online other arrangements will be made. See jazimmer.net for more details.

Leader: J. Adrian Zimmer, who has lived on three continents but not in any of the countries covered in this class, is a former computer science prof and author with a lifelong interest in foreign films. This will be his 6th film class offered in the Boston area.

Minimum Class Size: Seven

Maximum Class Size: 24

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3260 The Beginnings of Judaism Part 2

Study Group Leader: Robert Orkand

Session Length: 10 weeks

Day and Time: Thursdays, 9:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: March 3

End Date: May 5

Course Description: This course will be a continuation of that taught in fall 2021, though participation in that class is not a requirement for this one. In this class we will explore the Dead Sea Scrolls and what they tell us about early Judaism, the development of Judaism during the critical days after the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem in 70 CE and the ways in which the ancient rabbis reconstructed the Jewish faith, and how Judaism developed in the Diaspora. There will be no required reading and there will be plenty of time for questions and discussion.

Leader: Rabbi Orkand retired from the pulpit rabbinate in 2013 and then moved to the Boston area. He has taught for LLARC and several other adult learning programs.

Minimum Class Size: None

Maximum Class Size: None

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3261 Freedom of Speech: Is Speech Truly Free?

Study Group Leader: Rachel Alpert

Session Length: 10 sessions

Day and Time: Monday, 9:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Course Type: On-line via Zoom

Start Date: February 28

End Date: May 9

No Class: April 18 (Patriot’s Day)

Course Description: The 1st Amendment’s proscription, “Congress shall make no law …abridging the freedom of speech” is a fundamental of U.S. political system. But what constitutes “speech?” Is it really “free?” And should there be “no law” limiting speech? In our times of the internet, social media, “fake news,” and the decline of journalism, is “freedom of speech” a feature or a bug? Each week, the class will interactively discuss a facet of “freedom of speech,” including subversive speech, political marches, obscenity, hate speech, politics and money, compelled speech, commercial speech, and campus speech. The readings will be articles available on the internet.

Leader: Rachel Alpert teaches at Suffolk Law School. She has 36 years’ experience as a lawyer. She previously led LLARC study groups on “The Rise of Religion in the Supreme Court,” “Sex, Gender, Bathrooms and the Supreme Court,” “The Regulation of Food in the U.S.” and “James Joyce’s Ulysses” and led this “Freedom of Speech” course in 2018.

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3262 Art Under Attack: Theft, Scams, Outrage and Violence (three sections) - Monday Section CLOSED

Study Group Leader: Steve Kendall

Session Length: 10 sessions

Day and Time:

  • Section One: Monday, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. - CLOSED
  • Section Two: Tuesday, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Section Three: Thursday, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date:

  • Section One: Monday, February 28
  • Section Two: Tuesday, March 1
  • Section Three: Thursday, March 3

End Date:

  • Section One: Monday, May 9
  • Section Two: Tuesday, May 3
  • Section Three: Thursday, May 5

No Class on Monday, April 18 (Patriots Day)

Course Description: We love it—and we hate it. Fine art, more than any of the arts, has been attacked for centuries. In this course, you’ll hear (and see) one fascinating story after another. See how outraged people have tried—and sometimes succeeded—to get great art removed from public and even private view. Learn about forgers who make us wonder if what we’re seeing in museums are originals. Meet violent people who deface and even destroy beloved art. And see some of history’s most daring and fascinating art thefts come to life. Along the way, we’ll discuss together the great art that’s been attacked: from the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to a post office mural in Maine, from 13 Gardner artworks to the Mona Lisa.

Leader: Steve Kendall is the retired president of an advertising and public relations agency and the leader of nearly 1,000 tours at the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum and the Danforth Museum. He is a recipient of the LLARC Bernie Shuster Award for teaching excellence. This is the 16th term he has taught at LLARC.

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3243 Wise Aging

Study Group Leader: Sheila Wolfson

Session Length: Five sessions

Day and Time: Tuesday, 9:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Course Type: Online via Zoom

Start Date: April 5

End Date: May 3

Course Description: Explore in a small group what it means to grow older in our society. This is an opportunity to reflect on and appreciate our lives as gifts of time. Each session includes study and discussion of traditional and contemporary texts, contemplative practice (mindfulness meditation) and reflective conversation to explore challenges, opportunities and wonder of aging. Some topics: life review, revitalizing healthy relationships, our bodies, and cultivating wellbeing with qualities such as gratitude and equanimity.

Enrollment Note: This course is a continuation of Wise Aging from the fall semester.

Required Reading: This course is based on the book Wise Aging: Living with Joy, Resilience and Spirit by Rabbi Rachel Cowan and Dr. Linda Thal. As this is a virtual class, the book is required in order to refer to and discuss particular readings.

Leader: Sheila Wolfson is a retired nutritionist and holistic health counselor. She has been a meditator since 1972. She was trained as a mindfulness meditation teacher and Wise Aging facilitator at the Institute for Jewish Spirituality. Sheila has been leading meditation groups for many years in various settings. She has taught her two LLARC courses, Wise Aging and Mindfulness Meditation in the past.

Minimum Class Size: Five

Maximum Class Size: 12

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