The Center for Life and Learning:
   Special-Topic Classes

Center for Life and Learning (CLL) special-topic classes bring in experts from the Chicago area to enrich our annual curriculum and provide a flexible avenue of participation. One need not be a CLL member to register. The special-topic classes cover a broad range of topics from politics to bridge to the humanities; come and check us out!

For information about our special-topic classes, contact Susan Quaintance at 312.981.3386.

Three-hundred Years of Great Piano Music
Great Decisions Discussion Group
Beginner T’ai Chi Chuan
A History of British Music
“Caring for the Caregiver” Seminar

Beginning in March
Asian Religions

Washington, Hamilton, and Franklin
“A Little More Aware”: A Short Course on Short Stories



Three-hundred Years of Great Piano Music

   Mondays, January 30–March 20
   11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m. 
   Led by Stephen Kleiman

   Register online here

The development of the piano is important not only as the instrument with the greatest and most numerous repertoire, but also for how its development follows and reflects society’s evolution. From the sixteenth-century clavichord to the twentieth-century piano, as society changed its expressions, mores, and social structure, the piano and its composers followed suit. 

In this course we will discuss and listen to piano and keyboard music, the major common denominators that link the musical development throughout the western world over the past 300 years.

The script in this class is piano pieces by Beethoven, Mozart, Brahms, the Schumanns, Samuel Barber, Aaron Copland, Debussy, Ravel, Liszt, early Baroque keyboard works by Couperin and Scarlatti, some nineteenth- and twentieth-century American composers as William Mason, Louis Moreau Gottschalk, John Cage, and more.

Stephen Kleiman holds a bachelor’s degree from the Mannes College of Music and a master’s degree from the University of Michigan. An orchestra conductor in Europe and former music director of the National Chamber Orchestra in Washington, D.C., his compositions have been performed internationally and recently at Eastern Michigan University (Ypsilanti), International Chamber Artists (Chicago), the Longy School (Boston), the Newberry Library (Chicago), Music at Eden's Edge (Beverly Farms, Massachusetts) and the Chicago Danz Theatre.

$35 for CLL members 
$50 for guest registrants

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Great Decisions Discussion Group

   Co-ed Series
   Alternate Wednesdays, February 1–March 15; April 12–May 24
   1:15–2:45 p.m.
   Led by Dick Farkas and David Barnum
   Call Susan Quaintance (312.981.3386) to inquire about availability.

   Men’s Group Series
   Alternate Wednesdays, February 1–March 15; April 12–May 24
   10:30 a.m.12:00 p.m.
   Led by Dick Farkas and David Barnum
   Call Susan Quaintance (312.981.3386) to inquire about availability.

In Great Decisions, domestic issues are explored together in a respectful environment. There are two sessions (one open to all; the other men-only), and both will be discussing foreign affairs and domestic issues as they relate to the United States. This class will be jointly taught by Dick Farkas and David Barnum.

Dick Farkas has been teaching at DePaul for more than forty years. He holds an honorary degree from Corvinus University of Budapest and has lectured in Russia, Poland, Hungary, and Croatia. His research compares strategies for political and economic development in post-Communist and post-conflict countries. Dick has consulted for some of the largest corporations in the U.S. and has appeared frequently on U.S. and international media. 

David Barnum graduated from Stanford University with a Ph.D. in political science in 1974. He currently teaches courses in American and comparative constitutional law (First Amendment Rights, Rights of Defendants, Comparative Protection of Individual Rights, National Security and the Constitution) at DePaul University. 

$55 for CLL members
$65 for guest registrants 

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Beginner Tai Chi Chuan

   Tuesdays, February 7–May 16
   2:00–2:45 p.m.
   Led by Hau Kum Kneip
   Register online here

T’ai Chi Chuan is an effective exercise for anyone seeking to enhance balance, strength, and coordination. It is made up of a fluid series of postures joined with deep breathing exercises. In this class, beginning students will learn the history and fundamentals of T’ai Chi Chuan and will be prepared to join the intermediate class upon completion of the beginner series.

Hau Kum Kneip studied with Chinese Tai Chi masters in Hong Kong, Taiwan, mainland China, and Hawaii beginning in 1978. She has taught Tai Chi Chuan at the CLL since 1995 and focuses on increasing balance, strength, and focus in her students.

$80 for CLL members
$90 for guest registrants

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A History of British Music

   Wednesdays, February 22–March 29
   10:30 a.m.–12:00 p.m. 
   Led by John Nygro
   Register online here

From medieval sacred motets to Renaissance madrigals to Baroque operas to Romantic nocturnes and symphonies of the twentieth century, British composers have used different forms of expression while paying homage to their cultural past. We will explore the many facets of British music to discover its beauty as well as its universal transcendence. 

John Nygro is a lecturer, musician, and actor with a career spanning more than thirty years. As a lecturer, he has spoken on a number of subjects from classical theater and opera to medieval and Renaissance music to film and television.

$25 for CLL members
$40 for guest registrants

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“Caring for the Caregiver” Seminar

   Mondays, February 27–March 20
   1:00–3:00 p.m.
   Register online here
   Please note that this series is limited to 28 participants.

Joint event with the Replogle Center for Counseling and Well-Being and Pastoral Care at Fourth Presbyterian Church

Do you know anyone caring for a family member or friend who is chronically ill, disabled, or has dementia? Care-giving takes many shapes and forms in today’s society and can be stress-inducing for the caregiver.

The Center for Life and Learning, the Replogle Center for Counseling and Well-Being, and Fourth Church Pastoral Care are teaming up to offer a four-week seminar on how caregivers can care for themselves during these difficult times. Each week a professional will discuss topics such as long-distance care-giving, care-giving strategies for success and redirecting difficult behaviors, family involvement, and end-of-life issues. The goal of this seminar is to offer spiritual and personal self-care tools and communication for the caregiver on their journey.

$30 for all registrants

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Asian Religions

   Tuesdays, March 7–28
   2:30–4:00 p.m.
   Led by Timothy Gutmann
   Register online here

Offered in conjunction with the Graham School University of Chicago and Lincoln Park Village

This course focuses on traditions of religious thought and practice in China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam. We will discuss the relationship between Confucianism, which prizes the family and political service, and Buddhism, with its concern for suffering and practice of detachment, and other, more local traditions. Though these ways of thinking are different, we will look at how they inform East Asian worldviews together. We also will view Asia’s encounter with modernity that radically changed these legacies in thought and practice.

Timothy Gutmann is a Ph.D. candidate in religion focusing on Islam and East Asian thought at the University of Chicago. His research and teaching focus on religious orthodoxy and dissent, critical theory, knowledge and philosophy of education, and in psychology in Asian and Islamic traditions. Originally from outside Washington, he lives with his family in Kenwood, Chicago.

$45 for CLL and Lincoln Park Village members
$55 for guest registrants

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Washington, Hamilton, and Franklin

   Tuesdays, March 7–21
   11:45 a.m.–1:00 p.m.
   Led by Diane Kelliher
   Register online here

As children it is likely that we learned the myth about Washington and the cherry tree, saw Hamilton on a ten-dollar bill and heard Franklin’s dictum “a penny saved is a penny earned.” Come meet these three ambitious and imperfect men who were key players in the history of our nation. As well as coming to know them better as public figures, you’ll get to know more about their private lives.

Diane Kelliher earned two masters degrees from Loyola University, one in sociology (social psychology) and the other in pastoral theology, and has been interested in history for more than thirty years. She is devoted to making history lively, informative, and interesting, and she enjoys being with other seniors in the process.

Free for CLL Members
$15 for guest registrants

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“A Little More Aware”: A Short Course on Short Stories

   Mondays, March 13–April 10
   11:00 a.m.–12:15 p.m.
   Led by Susan Quaintance
   Register online here

Contemporary American short story writer George Saunders says that when we read a short story we “come out a little more away and a little more in love with the world.” We’ll decide if we agree as we explore how plot, point of view, setting, and character work together in this most underappreciated of literary genres. We’ll read some classics along with some newer pieces that highlight what Annie Proulx (another short story author) calls the “intensity, brevity, balance and word play” of the short story.

Susan Quaintance holds an M.A. in theology from St. John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota. She taught high school theology and English for more than twenty years and has facilitated many adult days of recollection and retreats.

$30 for CLL members
$40 for guest registrants

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