Current Courses

Archive of Past Courses


Spring 2021

  • WWII Day-Long Event: Envisioning peace- former allies jockey in a postwar world
  • Tristan: A love story for the ages
  • Hiding in Plain Sight: New England’s complicity in the Atlantic world slave economy
  • Regenerative Farming: Sustainable agriculture and its ties to global well-being
  • Fiction Writing Workshop: Engaging the great outdoors
  • Mary Cassatt: American artist, modern woman
  • “Hope! Not optimism, Hope"
  • Guilford Architectural & History Tour: At a crossroads in time
  • Shining a Light on the ‘Dark’ Ages: Uncovering early European culture & history
  • A River Runs through It: Exploring the many facets of the Connecticut River & environs

  • Spring 2020 - CANCELED Due to COVID-19

  • Up from the Smoke and Ash of War: Examining the Sequel to Global Conflict, 1944–1956
  • The Great Migration: Seasonal Birds Arrive in New England
  • Shakespeare’s Sonnets: Poems for Every Time, Place, and Season
  • Reality, Morality & Madness: Psychological Perspectives on Hamlet
  • Read All about It! Literature that Changed the World
  • Wolfram von Eschenbach: Parzival or the Quest for the Grail
  • “Once Upon a Time”: Timeless Fairy Tales Retold
  • When the Story Is Yours: Reading and Writing the Memoir Essay
  • Majestic Repose: Classical Antiquity and Renaissance Sculpture at Connecticut's Slater Memorial Museum
  • Click - Digital Photography for Beginners

  • Fall 2020

  • Visual Magicians: The Power of American Realist Painters
  • Up from the Smoke and Ash of War: Examining the Sequel to Global Conflict, 1944–1956
  • Read All about It! The Search for Utopia
  • A Hero’s Journey: Parzival or the Quest for the Grail
  • Mirrors, Masks, Lies, and Secrets: The Psychology of Human Predictability
  • Majestic Repose: Classical Antiquity and Renaissance Sculpture at Connecticut's Slater Memorial Museum
  • Henry David Thoreau: Listening to a Different Drummer
  • Reality, Mortality, & Madness: Psychological Perspectives on Hamlet
  • Ego Integrity: Self-Actualization in a Disarrayed World

  • Spring 2019

  • Your Turn at the Wheel, Introduction to the Ceramic Arts
  • The Sound of Music, Birding by Ear
  • The Frick Collection, An American Industrialists Money Meets European Masters
  • Stem Cells, From Bench to Bedside
  • Romancing the Throne
  • Njals Saga, Life, Love and Feuds in Medieval Icelandic Society
  • Lights, Camera, Action, There's a Monster in the House
  • Henrik Ibsen and the Theater of Modernism
  • At Play in the Fields of the Lord
  • Buried Alive, The Poetry, Prose, and Essays of Edgar Allan Poe

  • Fall 2019

  • The World of Spirits
  • The Book of Job: Exploring the Human Condition through the Eyes of the Divine
  • Read All about It! Books that Changed the Course of History
  • Raptors Ahead: Avian Hunters in New England Skies
  • Raising the Roof: 1950's Architecture and the Postwar Housing Boom
  • No Conflict, No Drama: Shaw's Way with a Play
  • Listening to the Parables of Jesus- Anew: Ancient Stories for Contemporary Times
  • DUCK: Water Fowl in New England Ponds and Marshes
  • Dark and Stormy Nights: Monsters and Machines in Modernist Art, Literature and Music
  • Code of Silence: Voices of the African Enslaved in 19th Century Connecticut
  • A Passion for Dance: Goodspeed Opera House's Billy Elliot

  • Spring 2018

  • Russian Theater on the Eve of Revolution
  • Romantic Landscapes of Constable and Turner: Common Goals, Contrasting Outcomes
  • Once Upon a Time: Short Stories in Pairs
  • Meet me at Les Deux Magots: The Lost Generation in 1920's Paris
  • Maybe it's My Imagination: Writing Memoir and Fiction
  • Masterminds and Martyrs: Women in Ancient Greek Drama
  • Geoffrey Chaucer: The Canterbury Tales
  • Be Amused by the Muse of Classic American Humor
  • A Shakespearean Romance, The Winter's Tale

  • Fall 2018

  • When the Story is Yours, Reading and Writing the Memoir Essay
  • Waka, Haiku, and Tanka, Japanese Aesthetics through Poetry
  • The play’s the thing, Drama and Psychological Depth
  • Shooting From The Heart, Finding Passion and Purpose in Your Life and Relationships
  • Civil Rights, Civil Wrongs, Minorities and the American Dream, 1935-1968)
  • Birds of a Feather
  • Are you an aspiring oenophile
  • A Tour of the Universe and How We Got Here

  • Spring 2017

  • Three Places in New England
  • The Clown and the Camera
  • Passing by the Dragon II
  • Odysseus, the Trickster Hero
  • Mythmaker: The Poetry of William Butler Yeats
  • Dante: Commedia
  • Connecticut House
  • How Did Base Ball Become Baseball?
  • A Tour of the Universe and How We Got Here

  • Fall 2017

  • Understanding Islam, Introduction to a Misunderstood Faith
  • Ukulele Workshop with Jumpin' Jim Beloff
  • Rise of the Right
  • New York City in the 1940's
  • Inside the Criminal Justice System, Law and Order and Your Constitutional Rights
  • From Saint Domingue to Haiti, The Revolution that Shook the Atlantic World, 1791 to 1804
  • Exploring the Experience of Commoners through the Lens of Woodblock Prints in the Edo Period of Japan
  • Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, and Edsel Ford: Two Communists and a Titan of Capitalism Confront the Realities of the Modern Industrial Workplace and Make Great Art
  • American Material Culture

  • Spring 2016

  • Three Great Myths: Oedipus, Persephone, and Dionysus
  • Thomas Jefferson: Integrity in the Individual Life adn the Meaning of "Greatness"
  • The Epic of Gilgamesh
  • Knowing and Enjoying the Connecticut River
  • Geologic Resources and the Evolution of Societies in Western Europe
  • From Freud to Facebook: 100 Years of Psychotherapy in America
  • Birth of the Modern: Paris, New York and the Age of Abstraction (1848-1948)

  • Fall 2016

  • The Science and Art of Meditation
  • The Great War to End all Wars
  • The Enduring Book: From Medieval Manuscripts to Artists’ Books
  • Revolutionaries in 19th-Century Paris: Manet, Monet, and the Impressionists
  • Ode on an Oyster: A Cultural Odyssey
  • Murder with Malice in Mind
  • In the Belly of the Whale and Other True Stories: A Writers’ Workshop
  • Emily Dickinson and the Poetry of Presence
  • Connecticut Civil War Soldiers Tell Their Stories

  • Spring 2015

  • Psyche and Science: Conversations about Parallel Roads to the Mysteries of Life, Time, and the Cosmos
  • A Perfect Omelet
  • Inventing America: How Art and Literature Shaped American Identity
  • The Sewing Machine and the Typewriter: A Very Short History of Work in America
  • Happily Ever After
  • Three Operatic Femmes Fatales: Carmen, Dalila, Salome
  • Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: Faust, Parts I and II
  • Due Process of Law
  • All Aboard! The Romance of Trains

  • Fall 2015

  • Notes from the Field: A Writer's Workshop
  • Waka, Haiku, and Tanka: Japan’s Minimalist Poetry, Old and New
  • Picasso and Truth
  • The Mystery Novel: A Captivating Read
  • The Science and Art of Meditation
  • Connecticut Impressionism, Florence Griswold Museum
  • Passing by the Dragon: Four Stories by Flannery O’Connor

  • Spring 2014

  • Exploring the Natural History of the Lower Connecticut River
  • Return Journeys: Second-Generation Americans Explore "Home" and Identity
  • Retirement as Reinvention
  • The Poetry of Memory: A Reading and Writing Workshop
  • The Nibelungenlied (Song of the Nibelungs) of Love and Death and Heroes
  • Clarifying the Mysteries of the Self
  • How to Get Into Print and Get the Most Out of It: A Freelancer's Guide to Publishing
  • Parsing Camille, the Heroine Harlot, from Life to Stage, Song and Film

  • Fall 2014

  • Travel with a Geologist: Hephaestus' Realm, Poseidon's Trench, and Apollo's Temple
  • Exploring the Challenges of Personal Finance
  • "Painting for the People": Lithography in France in the 19th Century
  • Hyphenated Americans: Contemporary Stories of Lives Lived Between Two Cultures
  • Henri Matisse: From Fauve to Modernist Art
  • Keeping your Nerve: A Fiction-Writing Course
  • Epidemics: Past and Present
  • Crime and Punishment: A Mystery Tour
  • All About Food: Healthy Cooking

  • Spring 2013

  • Adventures in Opinion Writing
  • The Issue of Succession: Shakespeare's History Plays-Kingship under Elizabeth I
  • Exploring the Challenges of Personal Finance
  • The Housatonic Valley
  • The Cycle of Life - A Rite de Passage for the Elder Passage
  • Middletown's Architectural Heritage

  • Fall 2013

  • Appreciating and Writing Travel Literature
  • Science and the Currents of Modernism
  • Mystery Thursdays: Five Characters in Search of a Culprit
  • The First Amendment
  • Film Studies at Wesleyan: Definition and Demonstration
  • Degas and Toulouse-Lautrec
  • The Art and Science of Meditation
  • From Abstraction to Post-Modernism: American Prints, 1950's -1980's
  • All About Food: Ethnic Cuisine

  • Spring 2012

  • The Book of Job
  • The Saturday Institute for Lifelong Learning: Rolling on the Connecticut River
  • Machiavelli Revisited: Arch Villian, Immoral Politician, Father of Political Science?
  • Legacies in Words: An Introduction to Memoir Writing
  • Happily Ever After
  • Germs Are Us
  • Exploring the Challenges of Personal Finance

  • Fall 2012

  • The Paintings of Paul Cezanne 1839-1906: Classicism Rejected and Renewed
  • Taiwan: The Crisis of Identity and Ownership
  • Positive Psychology
  • Picturing America: Highlights of 20th-Century Photography
  • Murder Under the Midnight Sun
  • King Lear
  • All About Food: Enlightened Eating

  • Spring 2011

  • Positive Psychology
  • Life's Great Transitions and Four Essential Dialogues
  • Life Is But a Dream
  • Legacies in Words: An Introduction to Memoir Writing
  • Germs Are Us
  • Exploring the Mysteries of Finance
  • Brownstone Stories: Quarries and Dinosaurs

  • Fall 2011

  • The Paintings of Vincent van Gogh: Images for Life
  • Shakespeare’s Cleopatra, Egypt’s Harlot Queen?
  • " People don't do such things!"-Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler
  • I Love a Mystery
  • Dürer, Rembrandt, Picasso: Reconsidering the Masters at the Davison Art Center
  • Civil War Narratives Come Alive
  • Art and Geology of Old Volcanic Massifs in Connecticut

  • Fall 2010

  • Middletown History Day
  • The Infectious Microbe
  • The "Home Front" in Revolutionary Connecticut
  • Hamlet’s Soliloquies: Method and Madness
  • Geology and Art
  • Food, Culture, and Identity
  • Deciphering Gauguin