Monday, Starts September 24

10:00am - 12:00pm
David Brower Center, Berkeley

Iranian Cinema

Hossein Khosrowjah

Gain an overview of post-revolutionary Iranian national cinema, which has garnered international popularity and critical acclaim since the late 1980s for being innovative, ethical, and compassionate. Look at the work of contemporary filmmakers such as Abbas Kiarostami, Mohsen Makhmalbaf, Bahram Beyzaii, and Asghar Farhadi. Discuss the role of censorship and the strong feminist tendencies of many contemporary Iranian films.

129 slots available
$145.00
10:00am - 12:00pm
University Hall Room 150, Berkeley

Joy of Singing

Lauren Carley

Prepare your body, brain, and voice to sing with ease, expressiveness, and projection. Learn four traditional rounds and five part-songs by ear, plus choral skills such as legato, staccato, fermata, ritard, timbre, and head and chest voice. More experienced participants may sing in trios or anchor their sections. We will perform for invited guests during the last class. Open to all levels.

66 slots available
$145.00
10:00am - 12:00pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

Shoguns, Samurai, and Survivors: Feudal Japan

Douglas Lee

Explore the cultural history of feudal Japan (1100–1800 CE), when “the Japanese became Japanese” by way of political, socioeconomic, and cultural changes that redirected the course of their civilization.

0 slots available
$185.00
1:00pm - 3:00pm
David Brower Center, Berkeley

1968 and Its Contested Legacy

Steve Wasserman

Reexamine common perspectives about an unruly year that remains politically and socially radioactive. We will aim to understand what Greil Marcus once called the “moods of rage, excitement, loneliness, fatalism, desire” that buffeted Berkeley and the world in 1968. A half-century later, we still don’t understand its legacy and need a more subtle comprehension of what a historical moment contains, as well as its unacknowledged victories and hidden defeats. 

113 slots available
$145.00
1:00pm - 3:00pm
University Hall Room 41C, Berkeley

Exploring Your Identity Through Writing

Anita Amirrezvani

Your unique family, heritage, culture, and traditions offer a rich source of material. Learn how to draw on your own background to generate stories that are deeply meaningful to you, the people you love, and even to complete strangers. Writing assignments will include nonfiction and fiction. Sharing work will be encouraged but not required. Leave class with a roadmap for expanding your material. 

0 slots available
$225.00
1:00pm - 3:00pm
University Hall Room 150, Berkeley

Global Warming: More Than an Inconvenient Truth

Warren Wiscombe

Cover the most salient issues in global warming, including: the history of its research; why the subject exploded in the 1980s; the relationship between the global carbon cycle and the burning of fossil fuels; the campaign against climate science; technological methods for stopping global warming; and changes to greenhouse gases over time. We will finish with speculations about the future of climate and of life on Earth. 

50 slots available
$145.00
1:00pm - 3:00pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

Zen Buddhism and Temple Arts

Marcia Lieberman

Devotion in Buddhist spiritual life is expressed in an array of physical and artistic ways. Through lectures, visual materials, and hands-on practice, we will examine the beauty and creativity of practices such as the enso, zengo work, Japanese landscape gardening, altar care, and the way of tea. What are the aesthetic concerns around these rituals, and how do they impact social interactions? 

24 slots available
$185.00

Tuesday, Starts September 25

10:00am - 12:00pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

Chekhov’s Stories

Elena Sheygal-Placzek

While famous worldwide as a playwright, Anton Chekhov is better known and more loved in Russia for his short stories, many of which are considered masterpieces of the genre. Gain insight into some of his best stories and novellas. Discussing a wide spectrum of themes, plots, and characters, we will pay close attention to Chekhovian style and the language resources he employed to render his ideas and attitudes. 

0 slots available
$185.00
10:00am - 12:00pm
Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, Berkeley

Is Liberalism Ending?

Beverly Crawford

What is the liberal order, and what are its alternatives? Discuss the history of liberalism, its weaknesses, and the arguments made about its end. We will examine the role of economic inequality, globalization, the retreat of Western liberalism, and the post-truth environment in weakening it further. We will also explore the remedies to save it. 

255 slots available
$145.00

Southern Gothic: Flannery O’Connor

John Campion

Closely review some of Flannery O’ Connor’s disturbing and comic short stories, which embody a critique of Southern society and the flawed vessels who live in it. We’ll follow the pathetic ways her archetypal characters avoid individual pain and responsibility for their actions. We might also discover O’Connor’s greatness — her conveyance that spirit can open up even in the experiences that seem most alien to it.

153 slots available
$145.00

The Book of Genesis: A Good Place to Start

Mark McVann

Compare ancient Israel’s great classic of Genesis to other ancient creation myths. Examine the notion of divine promise in ancestral narratives. Address rituals such as covenant making, circumcision, and animal and human sacrifice. We will also examine the scribal schools that produced the text.

23 slots available
$145.00
1:00pm - 3:30pm
University Hall Room 41C, Berkeley

Artful Essays for Pleasure and Publication

Elizabeth Fishel

Learn how to turn your opinions, memories, and ideas into short, shapely works for pleasure or publication. Examine excellent essays by Joan Didion, Anne Lamott, Oliver Sacks, and Nora Ephron, among others. Gain practical tips on style, structure, scene setting, and creating a narrative arc. In-class prompts will kickstart opinion pieces, first-person and travel essays, and blog posts. Receive thoughtful feedback on your work and guidance on where to publish your work in print and online. 

0 slots available
$225.00
1:00pm - 3:00pm
Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, Berkeley

Bay Area Documentary Filmmakers

Michael Fox

Nonfiction films are more essential than ever, but the subject matter typically overshadows the process for making them. In fact, the filmmaker’s narrative, thematic, and aesthetic choices are as important as the material itself. Each session will feature a recent or in-progress film followed by a candid discussion with the director. We’ll focus on the practical and ethical challenges of making documentaries, from conception through production and post-production to distribution.

230 slots available
$145.00
1:00pm - 3:00pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

Local Government from the Ground Up

Daren Fields

Have you ever wondered what a mayor really does or where your local tax dollars actually go? Examine how cities, counties, school districts, and special districts are organized. Explore what services they provide and how they impact our daily lives. Discuss local and state ballot measures in the November election. Find out what local government is all about, and learn how you can make a difference in your community. 

16 slots available
$145.00

Our Brains: Molecules to Memory, Part 1

Peter Ralston

Learn about nerve cells and how drugs or disease alter their functioning. We will discuss the organization of neuronal networks that serve major mechanisms, such as hearing and memory. Each lecture will be introduced by a basic neuroscience topic, followed by a discussion of related clinical concepts. This course will contain a mix of new and familiar topics covered in Ralston’s previous classes.

132 slots available
$145.00

Wednesday, Starts September 26

10:00am - 12:00pm
Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, Berkeley

Folk Music: The Golden Age 1950–75

Peter Elman

The confluence of people, politics, philosophies, and growing social awareness that came out of the post-WWII era ushered in a new age of enlightenment. Examine the rise of folk music through some of the stars of that period, including Leadbelly, Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, Harry Belafonte, The Kingston Trio, Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Peter Paul and Mary, Judy Collins, the Newport Folk Festival, and the Greenwich Village and North Beach scenes. 

190 slots available
$145.00
10:00am - 12:00pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

Murder: An Investigation

Judith Coburn

Like Season One of the popular NPR podcast “Serial,” this course will focus on one murder case. Review original police reports, watch surveillance videos, and hear how a defense investigator examined the physical evidence, found witnesses, and prepared a social history of the defendant’s life. 

0 slots available
$185.00
10:00am - 12:00pm
University Hall Room 150, Berkeley

Robert Frost’s Poetry of Motion

David Alpaugh

Robert Frost so energized his poems with physical, mental, rhythmical, and figurative motion (and emotion) that they are as powerful today as when his first book debuted in 1913. Join poet David Alpaugh as he performs, savors, and explores “The Road Not Taken,” “Mending Wall,” “Design,” “Home Burial,” and other works. Frost’s legendary public image, troubled personal life, and brilliant comments on the art of poetry will come into play.

57 slots available
$145.00
2:00pm - 4:00pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

Neuroplasticity, Meditation, and Volunteering

Amelia Barili

Meditation and volunteering are good for your heart, brain, and whole being. Combined, they foster positive neuroplasticity. Study the science of neuroplasticity, and meditate to expand your mind and heart. You will also volunteer for one to two hours extra each week at English-in-Action, International House, or Refugee Transitions. This experiential learning will deepen our knowledge of other cultures and help international students, refugees, and immigrants in the often-challenging transition to American life. 

6 slots available
$225.00
2:00pm - 4:00pm
Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, Berkeley

The Romantic Symphony

Alexandra Amati

This course will continue the journey of “The Symphony, Part 1.” Examine how the symphony became the central place for the evolution of musical language from classical clarity and structure to romantic passion and affect. We will also briefly witness the new paths composers delineate, such as the programmatic symphony or the tone poem. 

263 slots available
$145.00
2:00pm - 4:00pm
Magnes Collection, Berkeley

Understanding Russia

Anastasia Edel

https://mailchi.mp/52cc86d77e7c/olli-outlook-june-2018Russia continues to dominate the news cycle — but how much do you actually know about it? Gain an inside view of Russian history, politics, and culture. What is behind its current slide into autocracy? Which national myths, beliefs, and historic developments feed Putin’s anti-democratic ideology? This course will intertwine the country’s latest political and cultural developments with historical perspectives expressed in film, music, and literature. 

77 slots available
$145.00
2:00pm - 4:00pm
University Hall Room 41C, Berkeley

Writing Between the Lines

Deborah Lichtman

What is the relationship between form and content? How do novelists create suspense with syntax? How can an effective sentence become a brilliant one? Study the work and techniques of some great prose stylists. Apply what you’ve learned to in-class writing exercises. Lectures will cover diction, imagery, and cadence, heightening our attention to language, and expanding our repertoire of imaginative prose. 

0 slots available
$225.00

Thursday, Starts September 27

10:00am - 12:00pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

European Short Stories

Caroline Smadja

Each week will focus on one short story by a master of the genre. Our selection includes “A Misfortune” by Russian Anton Chekhov; “Babette’s Feast,” made into a movie in 1987, by Danish author Karen Blixen; “A Little Cloud” by Irish writer James Joyce; “The Mouse” by Anaïs Nin; a story by Italian author Italo Calvino; and “Armande” by French writer Colette, the first woman of letters to be given a state funeral. 

10 slots available
$185.00
10:00am - 12:00pm
Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, Berkeley

Human Rights in Global Politics

Darren Zook

Human rights are often associated with justice, but many people would argue that justice has been scant at best. This course will suggest a different perspective, showing examples where human rights have been most effective and where they are under attack. The biggest obstacle to effectively implementing human rights is the political opportunism that persistently rears its head all over the globe. Explore how that happens, and what can be done about it. 

171 slots available
$145.00
10:00am - 12:00pm
University Hall Room 41C, Berkeley

iPhoneography

Laura (Yoni) Mayeri

Learn how to expertly capture images, edit, and create extraordinary photographs using solely your iPhone. Gain inspiration to find your creative vision, and expand your technical knowledge. By the end of this workshop, you will understand the ins and outs of iPhone photography.

0 slots available
$225.00

U.S. Supreme Court: Landmark Cases, Great Justices

Curtis Caton

Explore several momentous U.S. Supreme Court decisions, from Marbury v. Madison and Dred Scott through Roe v. Wade, Bush v. Gore, and Citizens United. We will also focus on some remarkable justices, including John Marshall and Earl Warren, and highlight the challenge of applying the constitution’s general words to very specific, controversial issues. We will also emphasize how the court has reacted to rapidly changing social and political realities as the country has grown. 

90 slots available
$145.00
1:00pm - 3:00pm
Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, Berkeley

Ingmar Bergman's Films

Linda Rugg

2018 marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Swedish filmmaker, author, and film director Ingmar Bergman, one of the “auteurs” (authors) hailed in the 1960s by French and American film critics. Bergman’s work was part of a wave of “art cinema,” a form that elevated “movies” to “films.” Analyze six Bergman films and read short pieces by him and by scholars. Discuss the concept of film authorship and Bergman’s life and work.

197 slots available
$145.00

Philosophy for Everyday Life

Rob Merker

We all face big questions every day, from the metaphysical — “What is the purpose of life?” — to the mundane, such as, “Should I give a dollar to that homeless person?” Philosophers have been thinking about these types of questions for thousands of years. We will apply the ideas of philosophers from the ancient past to the lives we lead and questions we ponder today.

143 slots available
$145.00
1:00pm - 3:00pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

The Gender Spectrum

Erica Anderson

The Bay Area has been ground zero for social change in the areas of civil rights, free speech, resistance to oppression, sexual revolution, waves of feminism, and gay liberation. Now we face another dramatic revolution in understanding gender and learning how to live in a society in which gender is expressed on a spectrum. New knowledge, healthcare practices, and cultural challenges bring us into a time to learn who we are and how to build an inclusive and accepting society. Note: this class does not meet on October 18, and the final class meeting on October 25 will take place in 41C University Hall.

8 slots available
$145.00

Friday, Starts September 28

10:00am - 12:00pm
UC Berkeley Art Studio, Berkeley

Drawing Fundamentals (morning)

Danny Neece

Explore the key elements of drawing, including line, shape, tone, compositional design, and the drawing field. Learn how to creatively establish relationships, proportion, and the illusory third dimension, and touch on different modes of abstraction. We will address the role of drawing in imagination, invention, and image development. Whether you are a beginner or experienced, you can develop a free and fluent command of the drawing process and a conceptual understanding of key principles.

0 slots available
$225.00
10:00am - 12:30pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

Memory Book

David Casuto

http://senior-surf.orgCreate beautiful books that tell your stories and memories with printed images, photographs, and text. Learn scanning, editing, enhancing, and touching up, with the ultimate goal of adding your content to a customized online photo book. You may create your books as gifts, personal memoirs, travel journals, or family heirlooms. Bring your own laptops to class. No iPads or tablets, please.

16 slots available
$185.00
2:00pm - 4:00pm
UC Berkeley Art Studio, Berkeley

Drawing Fundamentals (afternoon)

Danny Neece

Explore the key elements of drawing, including line, shape, tone, compositional design, and the drawing field. Learn how to creatively establish relationships, proportion, and the illusory third dimension, and touch on different modes of abstraction. We will address the role of drawing in imagination, invention, and image development. Whether you are a beginner or experienced, you can develop a free and fluent command of the drawing process and a conceptual understanding of key principles.

0 slots available
$225.00

Wednesday, Starts October 3

2:00pm - 4:00pm
University Hall Room 150, Berkeley

Life at Home and Aging in Community

Susanne Stadler

A home for growing old gives us the opportunity to stay engaged and useful, remain part of our community, and build confidence when our abilities and strengths decline. Exploring how to live longer and better in one’s home, this course will cover design criteria; adapting your environment to your needs; “smart homes” and personal technology; health care and home-care givers; transitions and downsizing; and community resources. 

69 slots available
$145.00

Thursday, Starts October 25

1:00pm - 3:00pm
University Hall Room 41B, Berkeley

Art and Upheaval

Bill Cleveland

The activities of artists tackling tough community issues in places such as Northern Ireland, Eritrea, Cambodia, and Bosnia are largely unknown. Considered separately, their stories from the world’s frontlines are compelling and inspiring. Taken together, they constitute an important and growing body of work that reveals a lot about how human creativity can help us heal the deepest and most destructive of our self-inflicted wounds.

28 slots available
$145.00