Saturday, September 09, 2017 9:30 am - 4:30 pm
1 hour and 15 minute / Lunch Break
Students will have a 1 hour and 15 minute lunch break.
Louis Masur / Rutgers University
Any thinking American is drawn to Abraham Lincoln. His story invites us to marvel at how this poor, self-educated, frontier lawyer transformed himself into a political leader who defended democracy, preserved the nation, and abolished slavery. As late as 1859, when asked to provide an autobiographical sketch, he mused there was not much to say because "there is not much of me." If not much then, there would be plenty ahead.
To understand Lincoln, we must read him. This class provides an opportunity to immerse oneself in Lincoln's writings and to explore his ideas in seminar fashion, as we might in an advanced undergraduate course. Professor Lou Masur will provide biographical information and analysis.
Louis Masur is a Distinguished Professor of American Studies and History at Rutgers University. He received outstanding teaching awards from Rutgers, Trinity College, and the City College of New York, and won the Clive Prize for Excellence in Teaching from Harvard University. He is the author of many books including “Lincoln’s Last Speech,” which was inspired by a talk he presented at One Day University. His essays and articles have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, and Slate. He is an elected member of the American Antiquarian Society and serves on the Historians’ Council of the Gettysburg Foundation.
Marc Lapadula / Yale University
Could these be the three greatest American movies ever made? Orson Welles, Francis Ford Coppola and Stanley Kubrick were operating at the pinnacles of their respective talents when they created what many movie scholars and critics consider the three greatest masterworks in the history of American Cinema. Beyond revolutionary, these films not only defined the turbulent social and cultural eras in which they were made but successfully transcended those eras by casting a giant, awe-inspiring shadow of influence across the entire film industry that is still being reflected on movie screens to this very day. Each film is beyond noteworthy for its virtuoso directorial style, shrewd presentation of complex narrative structure, trail-blazing technical innovations, mesmerizing editing sequences, painstaking attention to period detail and an undaunted and deft handling of controversial subjects and themes.
These three thought-provoking films are unequivocally without parallel in terms of the sheer scope of their ambition and the spellbinding potency of their poetic force. Citizen Kane (directed by Orson Welles, 1941), The Godfather (directed by Francis Ford Coppola, 1972), and 2001: A Space Odyssey (directed by Stanley Kubrick, 1968) have each, in their own visionary way, indelibly transformed the art of cinema by carving a monolithic impression in our cultural landscape, thus providing the yardstick whereby all other 'Masterpieces of American Cinema' will be forever measured.
Marc Lapadula is a Senior Lecturer in the Film Studies Program at Yale University. He is a playwright, screenwriter and an award-winning film producer. In addition to Yale, Marc has taught at Columbia University’s Graduate Film School, created the screenwriting programs at both The University of Pennsylvania and Johns Hopkins where he won Outstanding Teaching awards and has lectured on film, playwriting and conducted highly-acclaimed screenwriting seminars all across the country at notable venues like The National Press Club, The Smithsonian Institution, The Commonwealth Club and The New York Historical Society.
Seth Lerer / University of California at San Diego
The English Language is changing at a faster rate than almost ever before. Not only are new words and new expressions entering popular expression; the language is becoming more evocative and idiomatic. Digital technologies have changed the way we write and read. Global media has helped make English into a world language — but a world language with many different social, regional, and cultural variations.
Should English be an official language; what standards to we use in public discourse; what happens when cultures come together and introduce new words; what role does technology have in language change? These are all questions that, in one form or another, have been asked for a thousand years — ever since the Anglo-Saxons first committed “English” into writing and created poetry and prose of power and imagination. English has always been Re-Invented by everyone who speaks and writes it. In this course, we will search for ways of anticipating future changes to the language and prepare for a world in which English will be Re-Invented before our eyes and ears.
Seth Lerer is Distinguished Professor of Literature and former Dean of Arts and Humanities at the University of California at San Diego. He has published widely on literature and language, most recently on Children’s Literature, Jewish culture, and the life of the theater. He has been awarded the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Truman Capote Prize in Criticism. His book, “Tradition: A Feeling for the Literary Past,” appeared in 2016, and his most recent book, “Shakespeare’s Lyric Stage,” was published in 2018.