Summer 2013 CCE Course Offerings
To enroll in any of these summer seminars, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 914-395-2205. Enrollment is limited and available on a space-available basis.
Studies in 19th Century and 20th Century Fiction
Instructor: Ilja Wachs
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:30-12:10
June 4- July 18, 2013
In this course, we will read such major modern authors as Kafka, Marques, Austen, Twain, Melville, Stendhal, Balzac, Dostoyevsky, and Tolstoy. The emphasis will be upon a close reading of texts with a view toward enhancing the pleasure and understanding that students take from reading great works of fiction.
Jewish Mysticism: From Antiquity to the Present
Instructor: Glenn Dynner
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1:00-3:40
June 4- July 18, 2013
This course traces the history of Jewish mysticism from late antiquity through modernity. After an overview of early Jewish mysticism from the biblical and rabbinic periods and the mystical-based asceticism of medieval German pietists, we will delve into the medieval flowering of the erotically-charged and heavily symbolic literature known as “Kabbalah”, which developed in Spain and Southern France. We will study kabbalistic approaches to such topics as: God, evil, demonology, sin, death, sexuality, prayer, and magic, particularly as revealed in The Zohar—the most central text of Jewish mysticism that, traditionally, one was forbidden to study until the age of 40. After tracing the further development of Kabbalah in 16th-century Safed (in present-day Israel), we will study a related mass messianic eruption which centered around Shabbetai Tzevi. We then learn about “Hasidism,” an 18th century East European popular mystical movement that centered around charismatic miracle-workers and grew into flourishing, modernity-proof dynasties that often survived the devastation of the Holocaust and continue to exist in America and Israel to this day. This course examines both the speculative and practical dimensions of Jewish mysticism.
Collage: A Format for Visual Expression
Instructor: John O’Connor
Wednesday and Thursdays, 2:00-5:00
June 5- July 19, 2013
The term collage was coined by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque in the early 20th century, and is an art form comprised of preexisting images, often photographs, which the artist manipulates and recombines in new ways. It is derived from the French "coller" meaning "glue”. In this course, students will explore the diverse methods and materials of collage – paper, paint, 3-dimensional forms, digital, photographic, etc. We will also learn about the history of collage, through slide lectures and presentations, from its origins in Eastern art, through it’s contemporary exploration in Western contemporary art. Ultimately, the medium of collage fosters true creative exploration and experimentation. This course will allow students to express themselves through the manipulation and recombination of images, in extremely personal ways.
Five American Poets
Instructor: Neil Arditi
Monday and Wednesday, 10-12:40
June 4-July 18, 2013
This course is designed to serve both as an introduction to the art of reading poetry for the novice, and a deeper exploration of five major poets for readers who may already be familiar with some of their works. It should be said upfront that American poetry has multiple origins and a vast array of modes and variations. We will approach this varied terrain through the work of five profoundly original and influential figures: Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, T. S. Eliot, and Elizabeth Bishop. Moving chronologically through their works will provide us with a sense of the history of American poetry from Romanticism to Modernism, and beyond. By focusing on a handful of authors, rather than racing through an anthology, we will more accurately learn from each poet how to read his or her works. But individual conference projects will provide us with opportunities to explore a variety of authors not on the syllabus.
Neil Arditi (BA, Yale University, PhD from the University of Virginia) is currently Chair of the Literature Faculty Group at Sarah Lawrence College, where he has taught since 2001. His courses focus on the history of poetry written in English from the Romantic period to the present, with a particular interest in the art of reading and the genesis of modernism. His essays on Romantic and modern poetry have appeared in a variety of publications, including Raritan, Parnassus, Keats-Shelley Journal, Philosophy and Literature, and Jewish-American Dramatists and Poets.
Glenn Dynner (Ph.D., Brandeis University) teaches Jewish Studies at Sarah Lawrence College. He is author of Men of Silk: The Hasidic Conquest of Polish Jewish Society (Oxford University Press, 2006), which received the Koret Publication Prize, editor of Holy Dissent: Jewish and Christian Mystics in Eastern Europe (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2011), and author of Yankel’s Tavern: Jews, Liquor and Life in the Kingdom of Poland (Oxford University Press, 2013). As a Fulbright scholar, he traveled to Poland and began uncovering hitherto unknown archival sources on nineteenth century Polish Jewry, which he has continually sought to integrate with internal Jewish sources in Hebrew and Yiddish. He has been a Fellow at the Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, and is a member of the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton University.
John J. O'Connor (MFA, MS, Pratt Institute) attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and was a recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts grant in painting and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant. He teaches drawing and painting at Sarah Lawrence College and Princeton University. In 2011, he had a solo exhibition at Pierogi Gallery in Brooklyn, and has also had solo exhibitions at Martin Asbaek Projects, in Copenhagen, Denmark, and Fleisher Ollman Gallery in Philadelphia. His work is included in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, Weatherspoon Museum, Southern Methodist University, and the New Museum of Contemporary Art. He currently has a studio at the Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation.
Ilja Wachs has been a member of the literature faculty at Sarah Lawrence College since 1965. From 1980-85, he served as the Dean of the College, and holds the Wachs Chair for Excellence in Teaching and Donning. He is the author of Dickens: The Orphan Condition (1999), and specializes in works of the 19th century, with an emphasis on the relation between the individual and the social world.