STUDY WITH THE BEST | Study Groups |


Classics and Literature
The 20th Century Novel
Syllabus-105
by William Flesch, English

An introduction to six great works of 20th century fiction. How does the human spirit deal with the breakdown of civilization and its promises? These writers all meditate on the problem of the moral and aesthetic place of art and literature in a world where all the old certainties have been destroyed.


Classics and Contemporaries: World Fiction of the 19th and 20th Centuries
Syllabus-27
by Milton Hindus, English

How the following classics speak to our time as well as their own: Notes from the Underground (Fyodor Dostoevsky), War and Peace (Leo Tolstoy), The Hunger Artist (Franz Kafka), Journey to the End of Night (Louis Ferdinand Celine), A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (James Joyce), and Confessions of Zeno (Italo Svevo).


Jane Austen Goes To Hollywood
Brieflet-49
by Paul Morrison, English

A new look at the hottest 19th century writer of the 20th century. Why has Jane Austen become so popular? What does it mean to translate a Jane Austen novel into a very different aesthetic medium, that is film?


Studies in Literary Modernism
Syllabus-102A
by Paul Morrison, English

Studies in Literary Modernism is an exploration of the concept of the "modern" as it informs seminal poems, novels, and plays of the early 20th century: Wallace Stevens's "Of Modern Poetry," T.S. Eliot's The Waste Land, James Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, and Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot. Professor Morrison views the formal radicalism of literary modernism the relentless experimentations with style and genre characteristic of the authors listed above as an attempt to come to terms with the brutal realities of 20th-century experience.


Autobiography: The Person between Myth and History
Syllabus-29
by Karen Klein, English

The varied ways in which autobiographers choose to represent themselves are examined in Down These Mean Streets (Piri Thomas), The Promised Land (Mary Antin), The Words (Jean-Paul Sartre), Confessions (Augustine), The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, The Education of Henry Adams, and Stop-Time, (Frank Conroy), and Report to Greco (Nikos Kazantzakis).


Six Soviet Prose Writers
Syllabus-46
by Robert Szulkin, Slavic Languages

Points of view on Soviet life and society: Collected Stories (Isaac Babel), The Master and Margarita (Mikhail Bulgakov), Envy and Other Stories (Yuri Olesha), Doctor Zhivago (Boris Pasternak), The First Circle (Alexander Solzhenitsyn), and We (Evgenij Zamyatin).


A Novel Murder: The Life and Times of the Detective Story
Syllabus-55
by Susan Solomon Forbes, American Studies

The mystery novel permits the serious reader to study basic issues, such as moral codes, the relationship between the individual (criminal, detective, victim) and society, and concepts of law and justice. Stories by Arthur Conan Doyle, Dorothy Sayers, Agatha Christie, Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, Mickey Spillane, John Le Carre, and others are discussed.


Private Dick, Female Detective: The Life and Times of the Female Sleuth
Syllabus-75
by James Mandrell, Romance and Comparative Literature

From Agatha Christie's Miss Marple to Paretsky's V.I. Warshawski and many more, "detective afficionados" can explore a familiar genre from a new point of view.


More Different Dicks: Offbeat Contemporary Detective Fiction
Syllabus 102B
by James Mandrell, Romance and Comparative Literature

Professor Mandrell's thought-provoking syllabus departs from traditional detective fiction. The stories explore complex social, cultural and political issues and avoid overly neat outcomes and conclusions. Included are: Murder in the Collective (Barbara Wilson); Study in Lilac (Maria Antonia Oliver); How Town (Michael Nava); Murder on a Kibbutz: A Communal Case (Batya Gur); The Case of the Not-So-Nice Nurse (Mabel Maney) and Blanche Among the Talented Tenth (Barbara Neely).


The Victorian Heroine
Study Guide-1
by Helena Michie, English

Many Victorian novels bear the names of their heroines; most follow the movement of a female protagonist towards marriage or death. This study guide is designed as an exploration of five Victorian novels Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre, Mary Elizabeth Braddon's Lady Audley's Secret, Thomas Hardy's Tess of the D'Urbervilles, and George Gissing's Odd Women and of how their heroines negotiate their journeys through the text.


Literature and the Law
Syllabus-65
by Saul Touster, American and Legal Studies

Ideas about law and justice are examined through the study of works by Sophocles, Camus, Melville, Jane Austen, Joseph Conrad, and others.


Law, Literature, and the Family
Study Guide-09
by Saul Touster, American and Legal Studies

Augmenting the popular Literature and the Law, Touster leads us to explore the relationship between law and the family as represented in four classic works of fiction.


Starting from Zero: German Literature Since World War II
Syllabus-74
by Eberhard Frey, Germanic and Slavic Languages

Discussions and readings include the following plays and novels: The Man Outside (Wolfgang Borchert), Group Portrait with Lady (Heinrich Boll), The Visit (Friedrich Durrenmatt), Homo Faber (Max Frisch), The Tin Drum (Gunter Grass), and others. Also included in this syllabus is a checklist of general categories (and explanations thereof) for the analysis of fiction, which should prove useful in the study of all forms of literature.


What's in a Name? A Study of Genesis
Brieflet-35
by Paul Morrison, English

"A rose by any other name would smell as sweet." In this brieflet, the book of Genesis provides the focal point in a wide-ranging discussion of the literary, social, and political implications of names and naming.


Introduction to the Genre of the Short Story
Syllabus-69
by Geoffrey Harpham, English

Discussion guide and representative readings from the works of Poe, Chekhov, Joyce, Kafka, and Breece D'J Pancake.


The Contemporary Latin American Short Story
Syllabus-71
by Teresa Mendez-Faith and Maria Elena Carballo, Spanish

An intriguing look at an important trend in today's Latin American short story the presence of the fantastic, unbelievable, or magical is explored through discussions and readings of the following: "The Circular Ruins" (Jorge Luis Borges), "The Southern Thruway" (Julio Cortazar), "The Smallest Woman in the World" (Clarice Lispector), "A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings" (Gabriel Garcia Marquez), and "False Limits" (Vlady Kociancich). Please note: Cost of this syllabus is $8. This includes all texts.


Considerations of Flannery O'Connor
Brieflet-3
by Bruce McKenna, Graduate Student, English

This guide looks closely at two of Flannery O'Connor's short stories, "A Good Man is Hard to Find" and "Everything That Rises Must Converge." Includes a discussion of the elements of landscape and setting, personal relations, and questions of faith and morality as reflected in O'Connor's work.


Early Bellow
Brieflet-4
by Milton Hindus, English

This guide provides a general overview discussion of two of Bellow's early works, The Dangling Man and The Victim, with emphasis placed upon style, plot structure, and character relationships.


Ragtime and the Book of Daniel
Brieflet-5
by Geoffrey Harpham, English

An analysis of two of E.L. Doctorow's novels, this guide focuses particular attention on the "fine line" relation between history and fiction, between the "real life" individuals of our world, and those "invented" characters of the fictional world.


A Re-examination of Sons and Lovers
Brieflet-8

A careful consideration is given to one of D.H. Lawrence's most respected works, Sons and Lovers. In addition to focusing on the author's unique personal style, special attention is given to Lawrence's concern for the individual coming of age as he struggles to preserve his authenticity in the larger social framework.


Masterpieces of the Black American Novel
Brieflet-6
by Peter Swiggart, English

The two works discussed in this course Richard Wright's Native Son and Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man focus attention on the concern for establishing a personal identity within the public society. Most specifically, the novels consider black attitudes toward white society and the effect which environment can have upon an individual's identity search.


Dostoevsky and The Brothers Karamazov
Brieflet-11
by Robin Miller, Germanic and Slavic Languages

This guide engages the reader in a careful study of Dostoevsky's classic novel, The Brothers Karamazov. Particular attention is given to the contrasting of the real life experiences of the author with those he creates for the characters in this work.


Flattery and Contempt: The Presentation of Women in Poetry
Brieflet-38
by Paul Morrison, English

This brieflet explores the paradox that the flattering of women in poetry is the sincerest form of contempt. Through a close reading of a Shakespeare sonnet, Robert Browning's "My Last Duchess" and Edna St. Vincent Millay's "I Dreamed I Moved Among the Elysian Fields," Morrison attempts to substantiate this contention.


The Fear of Poetry (and How To Overcome It)
Syllabus-101
by Paul Morrison, English

A step-by-step walk through tone, metaphor and symbol, sound and sense, sight and sense, and intertextuality for the most "poetryphobic."


Seeking an Identity: A Discussion of Jewish Women Poets
Brieflet-2
by Maeera Shreiber, Graduate Student, English

An exploration of several poems by Adrienne Rich, Linda Pasten, and Gerda Norvig, focusing on the poets' attempts to establish a feminine identity within the Jewish tradition, this guide also includes a general introduction to the study of poetry which the group may find useful in continuing its poetry study.


Shakespeare
"Is The Merchant of Venice Anti-Semitic?"
Brieflet-13
by William Flesch, English

As it strives to answer its title question, this guide engages the reader in a careful and critical analysis of Shakespeare's text. Special attention is focused on the contrast between the portrayals of the characters of Portia, the Christian, and Shylock, the Jew, as the guide explains how these depictions did, in fact, reflect the prejudices of Shakespeare and his times.


Femininity and Masculinity in Three Shakespeare Plays
Brieflet-10
by Joan Rutter, Graduate Student, English

This guide explores the complex issue of what it means to be a woman, and what it means to be a man, in Shakespeare's Macbeth, Antony and Cleopatra, and As You Like It. In thinking about these questions, the modern reader is required to adopt a double perspective: to try to understand Renaissance conceptions about gender and at the same time to compare and apply Renaissance conceptions to one's own ideas and one's own life, here and now.


Fathers and Sons: Towards Hamlet
Syllabus-103
by William Flesch, English

Fathers and Sons is an introduction to a number of grand Shakespearean themes: political, social and familial tension; the intensification or resolution of these tensions over time; the way in which people come to know themselves and take their place in the world; the obstacles they find; the help they receive. Thus, Shakespeare's themes are those of human life in general. We examine these issues not only for what Shakespeare has to say about them, but also for what they have to say about Shakespeare. What were his beliefs, hope or fears? How close are they to our own? This syllabus touches upon all the genres Shakespeare wrote in over the course of his career, concentrating on the plays, tragedy, history, comedy and romance.


Fathers and Daughters: Towards King Lear and Beyond
Syllabus-104
by William Flesch, English

A continuation of "Fathers and Sons: Towards Hamlet", this syllabus can be used independently. As Shakespeare aged, he became more and more concerned with thinking about people whose experiences were different from his own. Every father has been a son, and so has some sense of what it's like to be a son. But no father has been a daughter, and Shakespeare comes to realize how long it has taken him to think his way through to respecting and accepting daughters, and women in general. Fathers and Daughters touches upon all the genres Shakespeare wrote in over the course of his career, concentrating on the plays, tragedy, history, comedy and romance.


Women in Literature and History
American Women in the 1950s: "Exaggerated Contradictions"
Brieflet-44
by Joyce Antler, American Studies

This brieflet examines the paradoxical nature of women's lives in the 1950s by assembling evidence of the so-called return to domesticity apparent in demographic trends, the suburban exodus, fashion, media, and educational indices, while providing documentation of the very real gains women were making in employment, politics, civil rights, arts, and culture. Includes excerpts from The Bell Jar, Marjorie Morningstar, "I Stand Here Ironing" and the notorious Modern Woman: The Lost Sex plus media myths and your experiences.


Public Issues, Private Lives: Contemporary Novels by Women
Syllabus-70
by Karen Klein, English

As an update to the Feminism and the Family in Literature (S-42) syllabus, this work takes a broader look at what it means to be female in today's world. The course progresses from an analysis of the more intimate realm of a woman's self and family outward to consider her relation to society, its history, and its politics. Texts to be discussed are as follows: Sula (Toni Morrison), Meridian (Alice Walker), The Company of Women (Mary Gordon), Desperate Characters (Paula Fox), Burger's Daughter (Nadine Gordimer), and The Making of the Representative for Planet Eight (Doris Lessing).


Feminism and the Family in Literature
Syllabus-42
by Karen Klein, English

A study of women writers whose work center on the experience of being female biologically, psychologically, and socially. Includes The Awakening (Kate Chopin), To the Lighthouse (Virginia Woolf), The Golden Notebook (Doris Lessing), Surfacing (Margaret Atwood), and seven other works.


Feminist Literary Theory
Brieflet-30
by Helena Michie, English

How does gender affect the way we read, write, and think about literature? In seeking an answer to this provocative question, the guide looks at three different areas in feminist theory: at the text, at the issue of reading, and at the issue of writing. To further enhance study, reading of the following short stories is recommended: "A New England Nun" by Mary Wilkins Freeman and "Big Two-Hearted River" by Ernest Hemingway.


Women in American History
Syllabus-73
by Joyce Antler, American Studies

This course provides a fresh look into history through women's eyes by placing female experience and consciousness at the center rather than at the margins of analysis. In addition to texts and original source documents, such authors as Maya Angelou, Betty Friedan, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Mary McCarthy, Sylvia Plath, and Anzia Yezierska are represented. Please note: Cost of this syllabus is $8. This includes accompanying readings of historical documents by and about women from the colonial period to the present.


The Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo: Why They Will Never Shut Up
Brieflet-42
by Marguerite Bouvard, Women's Studies

This brieflet on the Argentine mothers and grandmothers of the disappeared, provides a powerful vehicle for discussion of courage and hope in the face of terror and the human rights issues raised by these women. Bouvard brings to life the activities of the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, a group of mostly housewives with limited education, from a very traditional society. These women showed the world, by standing up to the brutal Argentine military junta that abducted, tortured, and "disappeared" their children, that ordinary people can truly change a nation.


Health
Women Aging with Knowledge and Power
Syllabus-77
by Paula Brown Doress and Diana Laskin Siegal

This course provides a provocative exploration of a wide range of issues that affect women in the second half of life, including childbearing, sexuality, health care, relationships, retirement, and much more. The guided discussion will focus on feeling and experiences as well as information and resources.


Should You Have That X-ray? The Controversy Concerning Low-Level Ionizing Radiation
Study Guide-5
by Jack Goldstein, Physics

Difficult issues often evoke contradictory opinions, especially when some of the relevant information is uncertain. Goldstein looks into the controversy of X-rays and explains in layman's terms the pros and cons concerning low-level ionizing radiation, an issue everyone is involved with at some point in their lives.


Stress, Support, and Coping
Syllabus-66
by David Jacobson, Anthropology

This work looks at the variety of research that has been done and focuses on the causes of stress with a view to discovering how stress can be avoided and successfully dealt with. The course is designed to enable the reader to relate the scientific concepts described to her own experiences, in order to help her to prevent stress in her own life and to provide support effectively to others. Included is a guide for study group leaders.


Topics of Jewish Interest
Images of Jews in American Movies
Brieflet-28
by Stephen Whitfield, American Studies

This guide traces the depictions of Jews in American films over the last several decades beginning with the ghetto films of the silent era, progressing through the so-called "assimilation" movies of the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s, and on to a period of ethnic resurgence enjoyed in films of the 1960s and later. The manner in which these trends in Hollywood are connected to the status of Jews in American society is also considered.


American Jewish Humor
Brieflet-26
by Stephen Whitfield, American Studies

This guide provides a provocative not to mention entertaining look at what is distinctive about Jewish humor, especially in its American setting. With the likes of such comedians as Sid Caesar, Danny Kaye, Bette Midler, and, of course, the inimitable Woody Allen, the reader is encouraged both to learn and to laugh.


Women in the Bible
Brieflet-36
by Marc Brettler, Near Eastern and Judaic Studies

A study of the women of Genesis, Song of Songs, Ruth, and Esther, seen from different outlooks including anthropological, sociological, literary, and gender studies.


Jewish Women Shape Modern America: A Study Guide to The Journey Home: Jewish Women and the American Century
Brieflet-51
by Joyce Antler, American Studies

This brieflet is a companion to Part I of Professor Antler's book The Journey Home: Jewish Women and the American Century, which is a compelling portrait of thoroughly modern women who believed that by improving American society they were achieving Judaism's highest goal-making the world a better place to live.


Women's Stories, Jewish Lives
Study Guide-2
by Joyce Antler, American Studies

This guide is designed for use with Antler's edited collection, America and I: Short Stories by American-Jewish Women Writers. The guide discusses four short stories by the authors Mary Antin, Fannie Hurst, Hortense Calisher, and Lynne Sharon Schwartz. Each of the stories deals with the interrelated themes of Jewish identity and generational conflict, and each pairs a parent and child who, as the story unfolds, come to present differing views about Judaism and Jewishness; it is told, in every case, from a woman's special point of view.


Our Grandmothers, Ourselves were Yiddish Writers the First Jewish Feminists?
Brieflet-39
by Sylvia Barack Fishman, Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies

This brieflet deals with the first chapter of Fishman's new book, Follow My Footprints: Changing Images of Women in American Jewish Fiction. Were "Yiddish Writers the First Jewish Feminists?" You'll find out in "Our Grandmothers, Ourselves" and the many stories that follow.


Finding Common Ground: Jewish Women in a World of Difference
Study Guide-4
by Joyce Antler, American Studies

"Finding Common Ground: Jewish Women in a World of Difference" is the second part of a study guide to Joyce Antler's collection, America and I: Short Stories by American Jewish Women Writers.

The guide focuses on the theme of difference in four stories from the book Anzia Yezierska's title story, "America and I," Gloria Goldreich's "Z'mira," Joanne Greenberg's "L'Olam and White Shell Woman," and Leslea Newman's "A Letter to Harvey Milk." In each of the stories, a Jewish protagonist learns a powerful lesson about the meaning of Jewish identity by reaching out to others and attempting to understand difference.


Portrayals of Women in American Jewish Literature
Syllabus-76
by Sylvia Barack Fishman, Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies

This course focuses on women from the immigrant days of the early 20th century to contemporary America where feminism, a tightened economy, and expanded roles for women reflect changes in the concept of the "ideal Jewish woman." Works to be studied include: The Open Cage (Anzia Yezierska), Tell Me a Riddle (Tillie Olsen), Marjorie Morningstar (Herman Wouk), Goodbye, Columbus (Philip Roth), The Mind-Body Problem (Rebecca Goldstein), and The Cannibal Galaxy (Cynthia Ozick).


Contemporary Issues
Twenty-One Legal Puzzlers: What is a Crime?
Syllabus ­106
by Andreas Teuber, Philosophy

A series of murder mysteries and short takes in criminal, civil and constitutional law, with accompanying commentaries. The cases, some of which are re-tellings of actual cases and some of which are hypothetical, are intended to stimulate group discussion and test intuitions. This Syllabus also serves as an introduction to a series of Brieflets that consider, in more depth, the criminal, civil and constitutional issues raised by the puzzlers.


The Late Twentieth-Century War on the Poor: A View From Distressed Communities Throughout the Nation
Brieflet-48
by Jacqueline Jones, History

This brieflet explores the reasons why the media and politicians are so fixated on the black urban underclass when poverty is a multi-ethnic, multi-racial phenomenon in the late 20th century.


Justice Louis Brandeis and the Evolution of the Idea of Privacy
Brieflet ­54
by Mary Davis, American Studies

Get in on today's hottest public debate with this fascinating examination of the erosion of privacy rights. Justice Brandeis's insistence on the "right to be let alone" is often a far-flung fantasy, even for the average citizen. Find out what rights you actually have in this age of computer data banks, cyberspace, video surveillance and sensationalistic journalism.


Children Killing Children: The Dilemma of Juvenile Justice
Brieflet ­ 56
By Mary Davis, American Studies

Based upon a talk given at the National Woman's Committee in late May. The brieflet reflects an abiding legal and judicial concern made even more timely by the horrific spate of schoolyard killings by other schoolchildren in the winter and spring of 1998.


As We Grow Older: Unresolved Challenges of American Aging
Brieflet-52
by James Schultz, Phyllis Mutschler, Arnaa Alcon, The Heller School

Major breakthroughs have occurred in the development of programs dealing with the various problems of old age, with the result of more older people enjoying retirement, living independently and engaging in a wide range of activities. This brieflet looks at the problems and some of the solutions of growing older and includes special readings.


How Nasty Are We Free To Be? Racial Insults and Epithets: Discriminarty Harassment or Protected Speech
Brieflet-46
by Andreas Teuber, Philosophy

There has been an alarming increase in racial incidents - which brings up the question of how far do our First Amendment rights extend? When, and under what circumstances do extremely unpleasant and offensive acts actually cause other persons harm that they can rightly demand legal protection from them.


Is the Death Penalty Cruel and Unusual Punishment?
Brieflet-47
by Andreas Teuber, Philisophy

This brieflet tackles the issue of capital punishment by coming at it from two angles. It broadens the issue by asking what the aims and limits of punishment itself ought to be and it explores the issue of capital punishment by asking whether the imposition of the death penalty is cruel and unusual.


Getting Away With Murder: The Case of the Speluncean Explorers
Brieflet-53
by Andreas Teuber, Philosophy

Should killing another always be a punishable crime or is there some justification that excuses the killer. This brieflet puts you on the judge's bench and provides you with the opportunity to decide.


Victim's Rights: Justice or Revenge?
Brieflet-100
by Andreas Teuber, Philisophy
[Webpage] [Online Forum]

One reason that proponents of victim's rights have sought to obtain a greater voice for victims in the criminal process has been motivated by a desire to help victims and their relatives regain a sense of control over their lives or, as it is sometimes put, to achieve "closure." This aim, surely, is not without merit. But there is often another motivation that accompanies and complicates this desire for healing and that is a desire to insure that the perpetrator receive a harsh sentence. In capital cases, the effect of a relative's testimony may be life or death for the defendant. In this light prosecutor's have welcomed such testimony because they have come to believe that it helps juries identify more personally with the victim and hence be more willing to impose a sentence of death. The question then becomes whether the needs and interests of crime victims can be accommodated during the sentencing phase of death penalty cases without ‹ at the same time ‹ infringing upon the rights of a defendant, in particular a defendant's right to a fair trial. Indeed the psychological and emotional nature of victim testimony raises the question: Does the admissibility of victim impact evidence during the sentencing phase of capital trials bring justice or revenge?


Understanding the News Media
Study Guide-8
by Susan Moeller, American Studies

Dealing with various aspects of the media, Moeller encourages the user to select individual areas of concentration broadcast news, newspapers, wire services, television, news magazines, etc.


Kindness to Technology: Challenges of Transplantation
Brieflet-43
by Jeffrey Prottas, The Heller School

This brieflet explores the conflicting priorities of families in pain, of the transplant surgeon, hospitals, and public payers. Participants are taken into the thicket of ethical dilemmas that arise with organ transplants.


Can a New World Order be Based on Cooperation?
Brieflet-40
by Gordon Fellman, Sociology

Based on the thesis that nuclear threat and environmental crises have brought competition to a point of no return, can a New World Order based on cooperation be the answer to our survival? Suggested readings are current and there is potential for much spirited discussion.


Thinking about the Environment
Study Guide-3
by Attila Klein, Biology

With the current emphasis on the deterioration of our environment, our own knowledge and understanding of the issues becomes more urgent. This study guide explores the impact of our activities and discusses ways to modify our behavior in an effort to "save" the planet.


History and Religion
The Faith of Islam
Syllabus-72
by Alfred Ivry, Near Eastern and Judaic Studies

An introductory course including the following topics: The Written Law (The Qur'an) and the Oral Law (the Hadiths); Sects and Politics (a comparative analysis of Kharijite, Sunni, and Shi'i Muslims); Basic Theology, Law, and Mysticism (as practiced by the Sufis); Rites and Rituals (including prayer, the pilgrimage, fasting); and more.


Islam and the Jews: A Peaceful Coexistence?
Brieflet-34
by Avigdor Levy, Near Eastern and Judaic Studies

As it strives to answer its title question, this guide provides the reader with an in-depth look at Bernard Lewis's critically acclaimed work The Jews of Islam. Focusing on the main theme of what Lewis calls the "Judeo-Islamic tradition," the course considers the Jewish experience in the Islamic world from the rise of Islam in the seventh century up to the present day.


Philosophy of Religion: The Existence of God
Brieflet-21
by William A. Johnson, Philosophy

The most fundamental concern of the philosopher of religion for the last several thousand years has been the question of the existence of God. This guide presents a discussion of the four "traditional" or classical arguments for God's existence the ontological, cosmological, theological, and moral and asks which, if any, of these arguments can offer satisfactory proof that God does exist.


Ladies for Burning: The Witch-Craze in Early Modern Europe
Brieflet-31
by Robert A. Schneider, History

An informative and fascinating study, this guide provides insights into the witch-craze phenomena through discussion of a wide range of issues including why the craze occurred at the time in history when it did, what effect, if any, the religious wars of the period had upon the spread of the craze, and why women were most often the targets of the accusations.


Drama
High Flying Adored: Hero and Hero Worship in the Musicals of Rice and Webber
Brieflet-32
by John Bush Jones, Theatre Arts

The theme of hero and hero worshippers in the collaborations of Rice and Webber: Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ Superstar, and Evita are examined.


You Are What You Are: Jewish Identity in Recent American Drama
Syllabus-100
by John Bush Jones, Theater Arts

This syllabus explores questions of Jewish identity in the following plays by Jewish-American dramatists: Neil Simon's Biloxi Blues; Israel Horovitz's Growing Up Jewish Trilogy (Today I am a Fountain Pen, A Rosen By Any Other Name, and The Chopin Playoffs); Alfred Uhry's Driving Miss Daisy; Barbara Lebow's A Shayna Maidel; Herb Gardner's Conversations With My Father; and Wendy Wasserstein's The Sisters Rosenzweig. Included for each play is a brief introduction with biographical notes on the playwright and a list of study questions.


Uncommon Playwrights and Others: Three Decades of Plays by and about Women in America
Syllabus-99
by John Bush Jones, Theatre Arts

In this exciting syllabus, Jones explores eight plays by or about women in America. The plays that are discussed, Raisin in the Sun, Getting Out, Isn't it Romantic?, Crimes of the Heart, Painting Churches, Vanities, Waiting for the Parade, and A Shayna Maidel explore a variety of women's issues. Wonderful material for play reading or discussion groups. Information to obtain working scripts at a low cost is included.


Backstage: The Drama of the Family
Syllabus-63
by Michael Kaufman, English and The Heller School

The nature of family life and changes in family structure and function are examined in Hamlet (William Shakespeare), Hedda Gabler (Henrik Ibsen), The Father (August Strindberg), The Three Sisters (Anton Chekhov), Mother Courage (Bertolt Brecht), Long Day's Journey Into Night (Eugene O'Neill), and The Homecoming (Harold Pinter).


Fiddlers on the Roof
Syllabus-68
by John Bush Jones, Theatre Arts

Through the discussion of six major American plays and musicals, this course examines concerns basic to Jews in mid-20th century America. All the plays are by Jewish authors and reflect various areas of concern, attitudes, and ideas. The subject matter varies greatly, but certain issues fundamental to the Jewish ethnic heritage, religion, and value systems recur through the plays. Among these are questions of survival, assimilation into American culture and society, family relationships, ritual and religion, and tradition versus adaptation. Plays discussed are Awake and Sing (Clifford Odets), The Tenth Man (Paddy Chayefsky), Fiddler on the Roof (Stein, Bock, and Harnick), Cabaret (Masteroff, Kander, and Ebb), The Price (Arthur Miller), and Table Settings (James Lapine).


The Fantastic Fantasticks: Anatomy of the Longest Running Musical
Brieflet-1
by John Bush Jones, Theatre Arts

The phenomenal popularity of The Fantasticks, the longest running musical in history, is examined by Professor John Bush Jones. The use of myth and archetype, and the comedia dell'arte form are among the aspects of the show explored.


"Art Isn't Easy": Sondheim on Sondheim in Sunday in the Park with George
Brieflet-12
by John Bush Jones, Theatre Arts

A fascinating study of Sunday in the Park with George, Sondheim's personal manifesto on art and the artist, this guide considers this complex work from four critical perspectives. Discussed are the relationships between art and the audience, art and the critics, art and the artist, and art and life.


Knowing Too Much: Alfred Hitchcock Movies
Brieflet-55
by William Flesch, English

Explores what makes Hitchcock's movies so exciting, so perverse, and how they differ from other suspense thrillers.


American Pop Culture
The Impact of Jews in American Popular Culture
Brieflet-57
By, Stephen Whitfield, American Studies

The role of Jews in American popular culture raises several important if possibly unanswered questions. How could so tiny a minority loom so large in the arts, from the movies to drama to music and from painting and sculpture to architecture? What are the sources of such creativity ­ in the eager ambition of immigrants and their children, in the special sensitivity of marginal groups to the peculiar codes of the majority, in the tensions generated by double consciousness as both Jews and Americans? And to what extent are Judaism or Jewish identity and values relevant in understanding and appreciating such cultural achievements.


American Film and Culture of the 1940s
Study Guide-07
by Thomas Doherty, American Studies

Professor Doherty provides a new look at the culture of the 1940s through the "history of film" and "film as history." An extensive list of films, which are readily available on videotape, is provided along with thought-provoking questions to stimulate and guide discussion.


The Popular Culture of the 1950s
Syllabus-1
by Stephen Whitfield, American Studies

This syllabus is an extensive eight-session focus that studies the yearning for stability and security, the fear of subversion and radicalism that can be noticed in the novels and movies of this decade. For history buffs, this is a wonderful way to view the years from WWII to Kennedy.


American Culture in the 1960s
Brieflet-41
by Thomas Doherty, American Studies

From the election of JFK to Nixon and Kent State, this brieflet and its readings clarifies where America has been and helps us to understand where it is going.


Blacklisting and Other Un-American Activities: Movies, Television and the Cold War
Brieflet-50
by Thomas Doherty, American Studies

Did you know that the McCarthy hearings had nothing to do with the entertainment industry? Did you know that Edward G. Robinson wrote an article for American Legion magazine titled "How the Reds Made A Sucker Out of Me."? And did you know that commercial television was particular slow about asserting its independence from the anti-communist influences, blacklisting folk singer Pete Seeger until 1967? This brieflet opens up this time in history for study of some of the myths surrounding anti-Communism in the entertainment industry.


Access Files
The Access Files is a collection of multi-disciplinary "teacher guides." Each piece is "generic" and may be used with any specific discussion within a general topic.

#1. Plays on the Stage
#2. Play on the Page
by John Bush Jones, Theatre Arts

#3. Novels
#4. Poetry
by William Flesch, English

#5. Leading Questions for Television News
#6. Leading Questions for News in Print
by Susan Moeller, American Studies

#7 The Enjoyment of Opera
by Bonnie Gordon, Music

| Who We Are | Membership | Fundraising | Books | Faculty Speakers |
| Study Groups | Contact Us | Events | BUNWC Home | Brandeis Libraries | Brandeis University |