Perry Wallace’s pioneering story as the first African American basketball player at Vanderbilt, a look behind the scenes of Romeo and Juliet, and the relationship between 20th-century art and politics are among the diverse topics for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Vanderbilt winter 2017 term.
A Blair School of Music professor will offer a six-part series about Nashville as the new Tin Pan Alley with its employment of more working musicians than any global city. Other classes will focus on creative writing, knowing the basics and beyond about wine, and performing island music in the Osher Steel Drum Band.
“Many of our students say they value the camaraderie of attending classes with other lifelong learners during the winter, when it’s often too cold for outside activities,” says Norma Clippard, director of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Vanderbilt. “[lquote]We strive to provide intellectually rigorous courses in a relaxed, supportive environment[/lquote].”
The noncredit classes are open to all those 50 and older.
The following classes are offered for the winter term:
“Osher Steel Drum Band”
Taught by Mat Britain, director, and Alli Puglisi, assistant director, of the Vanderbilt Steel Drum Band program. The class will meet for seven Sundays beginning Jan. 15, from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at the Blair School of Music.
“Food for a New Century: Developing an Ecological Understanding of the U.S. Food System through a Local Lens”
Led by Ursula King, owner and principal consultant of Regenerative Community. The class, scheduled for six Mondays beginning Jan. 16, will provide a systems-thinking approach to considering the myriad effects of the U.S. food system on the environment, food insecurity, health and economy. Students will meet from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at St. George’s Episcopal Church.
“Creative Writing Workshop”
Taught by Kate Myers Hanson, former writing faculty member and literary magazine editor at Northern Michigan University. Hanson earned her M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. The course is scheduled for 12 Mondays, starting Jan. 16, from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. at St. George’s Episcopal Church.
“Nashville: The New Tin Pan Alley”
Taught by Mitchell Korn, adjunct professor of music and community at the Blair School of Music. He will explore the Vienna/New York/Nashville history from Beethoven and Gershwin to Nashville’s Allison Krause, Bela Fleck, Edgar Meyer and Jeff Coffin. The class will meet for six Tuesdays beginning Jan. 17, from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. at The Temple.
With each class session delivered by a different faculty member noted in his or her field, this course—featuring literature, music, history and science—continues to be one of the most popular within the Vanderbilt Osher curriculum. The class will meet for six Tuesdays beginning Jan. 17, from 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. at The Temple.
“World of Wine”
Led by certified sommelier and Nashville Scene columnist Pete Holland. The curriculum focuses on the basics for selecting and consuming various types of white and red wine. Students will meet for four Tuesdays starting Jan. 17, from 2 to 3:15 p.m. at the University Club.
“World of Wine: Beyond the Basics”
Also to be taught by Holland. The course will cover tasting technique, sparkling wine, and the major wine styles of France and California. The class will meet for four Tuesdays starting Jan. 17, from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m. at the University Club.
“Strong Inside: Perry Wallace and the Collision of Race and Sports in the South”
Taught by Andrew Maraniss, best-selling author and Vanderbilt alumnus. He will focus on the major themes of Strong Inside, Maraniss’ biography of Wallace, the first African American varsity basketball player to play with an athletic scholarship in the Southeastern Conference. The class meets for six Wednesdays beginning Jan. 18, from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. at The Commons Center.
“Life’s Too Short to Pretend You’re Not Religious”
Taught by David Dark, author and assistant professor at Belmont University, who earned his doctorate at Vanderbilt. The course will encourage conversation about religion in the context of other societal issues, including politics. The class will meet for six Wednesdays beginning Jan. 18, from 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. at The Commons Center.
“20th Century Art and Politics”
Taught by Leonard Folgarait, Distinguished Professor of History of Art. Painting, sculpture, architecture, photography and cinema will be studied to investigate the rich and complex relationship between art and politics in the 20th and 21st centuries. The class will meet at The Commons Center for six Thursdays beginning Jan. 19, from 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
“The Pen and the Sword: Literary Representations of War”
Taught by Elizabeth Covington, senior lecturer in English. The course is a survey of outstanding pieces of war literature, with works by Home, Shakespeare, Tolstoy, Tennyson, and others to be studied. The class will meet at The Commons Center for six Thursdays beginning Jan. 19, from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m.
“Cuba and the United States”
Taught by W. Frank Robinson, assistant professor of history. The histories of Cuba and the United States have been deeply intertwined, especially since Fidel Castro’s rise to power in 1959. Robinson will trace the complex political, cultural and economic ties between the two nations with an eye to assessing the current normalization of relations between the U.S. and Cuba. The class will meet for six Fridays starting Jan. 20, from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. at the Lentz Public Health Center.
“Exercise: The Fight Against Aging”
Led by Dino Nowak, founder of Renu Health and Fitness and a certified personal trainer. Students will explore the positive impact of physical activity and exercise on the aging process during class, which has six weekly sessions starting Jan. 20. The class will meet from 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. at the Lentz Public Health Center.
“OLLI at the Shakespeare Festival”
The class will explore Romeo and Juliet with two preparatory lectures before students attend a matinee performance of the Nashville Shakespeare Festival‘s winter production. The lecturers are Denice Hicks, artistic director of the festival; Santiago Sosa, director of the production; and Marcia McDonald, Shakespeare scholar and professor of English at Belmont University. The lectures will be Jan. 23 and Jan. 25 from 1 to 3 p.m., with the performance at 10 a.m. Jan. 27. Students will gather at Belmont’s Troutt Theatre.