Past Courses

To view course videos click on the title of the past course.

Looking for our really old courses (going back to the founding of the HSP program)? You can find them in our Course Archive.

Professor: Alain-Philippe Durand

What makes the French laugh? Why do the French like Jerry Lewis (and other comedians such as Charles Chaplin) so much?  Why does Hollywood remake so many French comedies? This interactive seminar responds to these questions by examining the comic and humor techniques used in French cinema throughout the years. In addition to watching and analyzing several representative films from different periods, participants will study the cultural and historic roots of French humor and laughter throughout history. Representative films (with English...

Course Time and Dates:
WEDNESDAY 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. January 22 until April 23, 2014 (no class on March 19 due to UA spring break). Optional screenings of movies in the Rubel room on February 12, 19, and March 5.
Dorothy Rubel Room
Professor: Steven D. Martinson

The youthful interests of Friedrich Nietzsche permeate his later work, for which the critical-creative writer is most widely known. We will first consider his early experiences, memories, illustrations, piano compositions, poetry, and prose, including his first major published writing, The Birth of Tragedy out of the Spirit of Music, and university lectures on the pre-Socratics. The goal is to render a new and different reading that challenges contemporary perceptions, images, and conceptions of one of the most influential and...

Course Time and Dates:
WEDNESDAYS 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. January 22 until April 2, 2014 (no class on March 19 due to UA spring break)
Dorothy Rubel Room
Professor: Richard T. Hanson

There Is Nothing Like a Dame! celebrates the women of Broadway who wrote the scripts, composed the songs, penned the lyrics, designed, directed, choreographed, and starred in classics of the American musical theater.
 
The seminar introduces the women of the Golden Age of musical theater who paved the way for the women now working on new musicals for the millennium. Revel in archival performances by the great ladies of Broadway past and cheer for the new divas of the Great White Way who are creating musical memories for...

Course Time and Dates:
TUESDAYS 9:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. January 21 until April 1, 2014 (no class on March 18 due to UA spring break)
Dorothy Rubel Room
SECTION FULL -- TUESDAYS 1:00 until 4:00 p.m. January 21 until April 1, 2014 (no class on March 18 due to UA spring break)
Dorothy Rubel Room
Professor: Richard T. Hanson

There Is Nothing Like a Dame! celebrates the women of Broadway who wrote the scripts, composed the songs, penned the lyrics, designed, directed, choreographed, and starred in classics of the American musical theater.
 
The seminar introduces the women of the Golden Age of musical theater who paved the way for the women now working on new musicals for the millennium. Revel in archival performances by the great ladies of Broadway past and cheer for the new divas of the Great White Way who are creating musical memories for...

Course Time and Dates:
TUESDAYS 9:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. January 21 until April 1, 2014 (no class on March 18 due to UA spring break)
Dorothy Rubel Room
SECTION FULL -- TUESDAYS 1:00 until 4:00 p.m. January 21 until April 1, 2014 (no class on March 18 due to UA spring break)
Dorothy Rubel Room
Professor: Jay Rosenblatt

The year 2013 will commemorate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Giuseppe Verdi (1813–1901), and over four sessions we will survey his vast output of operas. The first lecture will provide an overview of Verdi’s life and career. We will also consider his most important predecessors (Rossini, Bellini, and Donizetti) and the relationship of their music to his as seen in his earliest operas. Subsequent classes will continue the chronological survey, with in-depth examination of selected scenes using video clips and recordings. Finally, we...

Course Time and Dates:
MONDAYS 1:00 - 4:00 p.m. October 14; December 2, 9, 16, 2013
Dorothy Rubel Room
Professor: Meg Lota Brown

John Milton was one of England’s most controversial, celebrated, and reviled writers. As the course title suggests, we will study Milton’s poetry and prose within the context of the many revolutions in which he was a major figure: revolutions in politics, theology, poetics, and philosophy. One of our goals will be to examine not only how Milton–and the culture in which he was embedded–constructed meaning but also why it is important for us to undertake such an examination. We will read works from many of the different genres in which Milton...

Course Time and Dates:
FRIDAYS 9:00 a.m. until noon October 4 until December 13, 2013
Dorothy Rubel Room
Professor: Michael Gill

Utilitarianism is the idea that one ought to perform those actions that produce the greatest happiness for the greatest numbers, which is one of the most important views of morality ever developed. In this course we will explore Utilitarianism’s philosophical origins, its influences on politics and literature, and recent attempts to show that contemporary neuroscience and psychology validate it. We will read works of the philosophers David Hume, Adam Smith, and John Stuart Mill, and excerpts from the novels of Dickens and Dostoevsky. The...

Course Time and Dates:
THURSDAYS 1:00-3:00 p.m. October 3 until December 12, 2013
Dorothy Rubel Room
Professor: Fabio Lanza

This course analyzes the evolution of Chinese urban space to show how both Chinese people and outsiders viewed the evolving form of the city as the symbol of China’s progress, its position in the world, and its internal social dynamics. From the walls of the Forbidden City to the Western buildings of Shanghai, from the massive squares and the drab structures of communism to the incredible expansion in the last thirty years, we will investigate the shifting meanings of architecture and city life. We will look at how such notions as...

Course Time and Dates:
THURSDAYS 9:00 a.m. until noon October 3 until December 12, 2013
Dorothy Rubel Room
Professor: Norman Austin

This seminar will take students through a reading of the whole of Homer’s Iliad.  The first two weeks will be devoted to historical conditions around the work, including discussion of the nature of oral composition and aesthetic aspects of oral epic.  The remaining eight weeks will be devoted to a consecutive reading of the poem, with the focus on such issues as the relations between the gods and human beings, between one human being and another, the making of the hero, destiny, choice, free will, and the tragic consequences of a...

Course Time and Dates:
WEDNESDAYS 10:00 a.m. until noon October 2 until December 11, 2013
Dorothy Rubel Room
Professor: Lanin Gyurko

Join Professor Lanin Gyurko as he explores the life and films of one of the greatest film directors, Alfred Hitchcock, master of suspense, mystery, and intrigue. Films from the silent and sound eras, in black and white and color, and biopics will be discussed. The course will highlight both the films’ spellbinding content and their use of dazzling cinematic techniques, as well as Hitchcock's adroit utilization of star power--from Joan Fontaine and Laurence Olivier to Ingrid Bergman, Cary Grant, Grace Kelly, and Kim Novak. Films that will be...

Course Time and Dates:
TUESDAYS 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. October 1 until December 10, 2013
Dorothy Rubel Room

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