Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Fall 2014 @ Osher - UNM Continuing Education

Great Courses @ Osher:  You know about Osher, right? Although this is the first time that Abq Jew has featured Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, he has often listed Osher courses of Jewish interest on his Learn/FiftyPlus page.

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of New Mexico brings the challenge and excitement of university learning to adults age 50 plus who want to explore stimulating and fascinating subjects. All of the traditional disciplines are offered, as well as new areas of research and study.

Osher at the University of New Mexico offers a wide range of courses, lectures and special events to its members.  Courses and lectures are taught by UNM faculty as well as by qualified members of the community. There are no tests or grades, just learning for the pure joy.

Your membership in Osher means discovering new friends, new knowledge and new ways of bringing meaning and enjoyment to your life. This program is made possible through a generous grant from the Bernard Osher Foundation. The Foundation has funded Institutes from Hawaii to Maine to offer intellectually stimulating learning opportunities for mature adults.

Registration is now open.

This session's courses and instructors include:

The Queen Esther Obsession
Tue 9 September 2014 @ 1:00 pm - #19147
Instructor: Naomi Sandweiss
What It Is: Queen Esther, the biblical heroine, was the subject of intense interest among Christians and Jews during the 15th to 17th centuries. Especially in Italy, images of Esther appeared in artwork, church decorations, and marriage furniture, while books and plays about the biblical heroine also proliferated. Through viewing historical materials and artwork (including paintings by Veronese, Turabouni and others), this illustrated presentation will describe the “Esther Obsession” and explain some of the reasons behind the intense interest.

Our Muslim Neighbors
Tue 10 October Sukkot  / 4 November 2014 @ 2:00 pm - #19817
Instructor: Ned O'Malia
What It Is: Islam is the fastest-growing religion in the world; it may also be the most misunderstood. There are now more Muslims in America than Jews or Presbyterians.  There are over 1400 mosques in the United States. This illustrated lecture will review the Five Pillars of Islam and Mohammed the prophet of Islam. The growth of Islam in America will be traced through  several Black National movements especially Malcolm X and the Black Muslims. A rapid increase in Muslim population came with immigration reforms in 1964. These reforms ushered in a generation of educated, Americanized immigrant Muslims. Demographics, national population statistics and political associations will be discussed. Islam in New Mexico is a special feature. The future of Islam in America is speculated.

The DNA of Christopher Columbus
Fri 17 October Simchat Torah 2014 @ 3:30 pm - #19480
Instructor: Angel R Cervantes, Director, New Mexico DNA Project
What It Is:  The exact ethnic or national origin of Christopher Columbus has been a source of controversy since the 19th century. It is generally agreed upon by many historians that Columbus’ family was from Genoa, Italy. Angel Cervantes will show a documentary on his life and theories on his possible origins. We’ll discuss his DNA markers and what they indicate. The results may surprise you and may change the family history of Columbus.

The Mystery of the Dead Sea Scrolls
Mon 20 & 27 October 2014 @ 3:00 pm - #19830
Instructor: Jane Ellen, Lecturer, Composer, Performing and Recording Artist
What It Is: For more than 60 years, the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls has fascinated the public, while the scrolls themselves have continued to be the subject of endless debate and speculation. Discovered between 1947 and 1956 in caves near the northwestern shore of the Dead Sea, the texts of the Dead Sea Scrolls are of great religious and historical significance. They include some of the only known surviving copies of Biblical documents made before 100 B.C.E. and preserve evidence of late Second Temple Judaism. This class will present an introduction to the history  of the scrolls, an overview of their content, and will examine their significance in the fields of Biblical Archaeology  and Biblical Scholarship. Videos and handouts will help to amplify our study of one of Judaisms most fascinating treasures.

Erich Wolfgang Korngold: King of the Swashbucklers
Tue 4 November 2014 @ 3:00 pm - #19612
Instructor: Bryan Stoneburner
What It Is: The Hungarian-born, Viennese-trained composer, Erich Wolfgang Korngold is best remembered today for his 1930s film scores, especially the Errol Flynn swashbucklers. Like many film composers in cinema’s Golden Age, his rich orchestrations and lush harmonies reflect the Late Romantic tradition of Wagner, Richard Strauss, Puccini and Mahler. It’s just that he did it better. But less well known is that he was also a composer of ‘serious’ compositions which get far less play today. In this class we’ll explore the classic film scores like Captain Blood, The Sea Hawk, Kings Row, and Robin Hood as well as works like the opera Die  Tote Stadt and the Violin Concerto.

A Mobster in the Family: Jewish Outlaws, Gangsters & Bandits
Fri 7 November 2014 @ 10:00 am - #19433
Instructor: Naomi Sandweiss
What It Is: From Meyer Lansky to Bernie Madoff, some Jewish Americans followed illegal paths to the American dream. Meet Jewish gangsters, outlaws and mobsters. Consider the historical/social context of American Jews who pursued criminal careers.

The Bible in Popular Culture: An Introduction
Mon 1 & 8 December 2014 @ 2:00 pm - #19816
Instructor: Jane Ellen, Lecturer, Composer, Performing and Recording Artist
What It Is: Easily one of the best-selling books of all time, the Bible is actually a collection of books and letters written in three languages, by multiple authors, across the centuries. Responsible for influencing human history perhaps more than any other volume, it eventually entered the popular vernacular resulting in popular quotes and misquotes, strange ideas and misconceptions, and—of course, never-ending disputes. This introductory two-part class will explore the background of the documents, the history of its versions, and attempt to unravel some of the popular Biblically-based stories, myths, and misconceptions that permeate western culture.

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