Bard News & Events

Press Release


Emily Darrow

ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—The Continuing Studies Program (CSP) at Bard College will offer 12 courses this spring from Wednesday, January 29, through Wednesday, May 21. Students may enroll either for credit or as auditors. The CSP office should receive registrations by Tuesday, January 28, accompanied by a $30 registration fee and tuition payment. (All courses are 4 credits, unless otherwise noted.)

Leon Levy, former professor at Baruch College and legendary financier whose acclaimed book, The Mind of Wall Street, analyzes "the perils of greed and the mysteries of financial markets," will conduct the Seminar in Contemporary Developments of Finance, on Friday afternoons from 1:00 to 3:20 p.m. Several guest lecturers will also offer their informed views in the development of contemporary finance. This seminar will contrast the academic analysis of financial economics with the coverage it receives in the newspapers and on the nightly newscast. The stories in the news are almost always connected with people, whether we observe them shouting bids in a trading floor or talking on two phones simultaneously. Financial markets are dominated by people behaving in many different ways. Yet traditional finance theories concentrate on efficient markets, predictable prices that are determined by the concepts of present value, rates of return, and analysis and pricing of computable risks. Human behavior has neither a place in the theory nor a need to be studied. This prevailing view has recently been challenged by the new paradigm of behavioral finance that considers the many anomalies of "rational" behavior and the "efficiency" of markets. The new paradigm concerns itself with economic decision making and investor psychology, and specifically with questions relating to how and why people exhibit a mixture of rational and irrational behavior. The seminar will examine the influence of economic psychology in the decision-making process of various agents as well as in the market's dynamics. There are no prerequisites, but a familiarity with financial economics is helpful. Please contact Professor Dimitri Papadimitriou at 845-758-7427, prior to registration.

Justus Rosenberg, professor of languages and literature, will offer the seminar Other Voices and Views: Contemporary Literature and the Third World on Monday evenings from 6:30 to 8:50 p.m. This seminar offers a close reading of selected poems, plays, and short stories by distinguished writers of Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. These works are examined for their intrinsic literary merits, the verisimilitude with which the authors portray the political and social situations in their countries, and the way these situations affect the thoughts, feelings, and attitudes of the older and younger generations. Authors include Chinua Achebe, Anita Desai, Mahasveta Devi, Enchi Fumiko, Bessie Head, Nagib Mahfuz, RK Narayan, Ousmane Sembene, Salman Rushdie, Nawal El Saadawi, Rabindranath Tagore, and Ngugi wa Thiong’o.

Joseph Luzzi, assistant professor of Italian, will offer the seminar Dante on Tuesday evenings from 6:00 to 8:20 p.m. This course introduces students to the world and work of the so-called "founder of all modern poetry," Dante Alighieri. The close reading of the entire Divine Comedy (Inferno, Purgatorio, Paradiso) will consider such issues as the phenomenology of poetic inspiration, medieval theories of gender, Dante’s relationship with the literary ghosts Virgil and Cavalcanti, the sources and shapes of the human soul, and how the weight of love (pondus amoris) can save this same soul. Selections from Dante’s other works, including the story of his poetic apprenticeship (The New Life) and his linguistic treatise ("On Eloquence in the Vernacular"), are also read. The course is conducted in English, with readings in English translation; students have the option of reading the works in Italian.

Christopher Lindner, visiting assistant professor of anthropology, director of the Bard Archaeology Field School, and archaeologist in residence, will lead the course Archaeology of African Americans on Tuesday evenings from 7:00 to 9:20 p.m. This course will provide an introduction to historical archaeology, focusing on the material vestiges of African American life along the East Coast. Subjects include burial grounds in New York City and Philadelphia, slave quarters that contain signs of spirituality in the Southeast, the dwellings of free blacks in the Hudson Valley, and the question of whether the Underground Railroad can be recognized archaeologically. The course will include a Saturday field trip to research sites near Bard. Students will have the opportunity to continue their study at a dig planned for next summer at the Guinea community in Hyde Park.

Vernon Benjamin, a writer and editor who lives in Saugerties, will offer the seminar Hudson Valley History on Wednesday evenings from 7:00 to 9:20 p.m. This is a document-based course on Hudson Valley history "from wilderness to Woodstock." Topics include geology and prehistoric cultures; the European discoveries; the Dutch and English periods; the American Revolution and the U.S. Constitution debate; the Federalist-Whig era; the rise of Martin Van Buren; the Industrial Revolution; black life and culture; tidewater literature, architecture, and the Hudson River School of Art; the Gilded Age and the great estates; John Burroughs and the rise of the conservation movement; the creation of the Palisades Interstate Park; Prohibition and the emergence of cultural diversity; the Age of Roosevelt; the story of West Point; postwar population expansion; Nelson Rockefeller and the creation of the Empire State Plaza; the rise of feminism; Woodstock Nation and the Vietnam era; Storm King and the rise of modern environmentalism; modernizing the New York State Legislature; achievements in science, culture, and higher education; and an evaluation of the Valley’s history within the context of American ideals.

Anne Bertrand, assistant professor of art history, will offer Close Readings of the Old Masters on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 to 8:50 p.m. This course reviews a selection of the most important works of art produced throughout Europe from the 16th century to the end of the 18th century by both male and female artists such as Caravaggio, El Greco, Artemisia Gentileschi, Judith Leyster, Raphael, Rembrandt, Velazquez, and Watteau. Each class meeting is devoted to a handful of works of art (paintings, drawings, or prints) that are investigated in depth and through a variety of approaches. These investigations, ranging from stylistic considerations to issues such as patronage and the function of art, provide students with a basic introduction to the discipline of art history. The format of this class is similar to that of a seminar where students are encouraged not only to participate in class discussions but also to help in the selection of the works of art to be studied.

Bertrand will also offer tutorials in art history on selected topics including European art from the 17th century to the end of the 19th century, any consideration of European and/or woman artists from 1600 to 1900, and any aspect of art criticism and methodology in Western art. The tutorial will provide the opportunity for students to investigate a particular topic in depth under the close supervision of Bertrand. Time and location will be determined.

Teresa Vilardi, acting coordinator of the Workshop in Language and Thinking at Bard, will teach the Writers Workshop: Memoir on Thursday evenings from 7:00 to 9:20 p.m. This course will offer students a place to explore the challenges and satisfactions of the craft of writing memoir. It also creates an occasion for thinking about what the contemporary memoir tells us about memory and imagination; membership in an ethnic, racial, or cultural community; and the value our stories have for others' lives. Each week, class members will bring writing for workshop response and learn from others as to how their work is heard.

Naomi Thornton, visiting professor of theater at Bard College, will teach Workshop in Method Acting on Thursday evenings from 6:00 to 8:20 p.m. The workshop is designed to help students, beginning or advanced, feel comfortable in front of an audience and achieve spontaneity and freedom. Acting skills are taught with an emphasis on relaxation, concentration, and focus. Some group exercises and improvisations are undertaken, but individual attention is stressed. Dramatic materials include scenes, monologues, and poetry. The more advanced students will proceed to character work, text analysis, consideration of time and space, and the development of a classical role.

Diana Ayton-Shenker and Laura Rock Kopczak will offer the course Conscious Citizenship on Thursday evenings from 7:00 to 9:20 p.m. In this seminar they will use readings, videos, prompted writing, and discussion to explore what each individual can do to be a conscious citizen: to take a stand on issues that matter and live a life that is inspired, empowered, responsible, and compassionate. Participants delve into the meaning of citizenship through readings and videos. The thrust of the course, however, is for participants to formulate and articulate their own individual views on what it means to be a citizen and how to approach citizenship as they go forward in their lives.

Cheryl Wheat, adjunct professor of studio art at Bard, will teach Figure Drawing on Saturdays, from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. She will convey, through lectures, slide presentations, and demonstrations, fundamental ideas embodied in contemporary, modern, and old master drawings. Some of the topics to be covered are scale, proportions, and geometry of the figure; gesture and contrapposto; and uses of line and phrasing. A variety of drawing materials will be employed, including chalk, graphite, pen and ink, wash, silverpoint, and mixed media, with an emphasis on charcoal. Students will draw from the model during most sessions. There will be a $30 model fee in addition to tuition.

Wheat will also teach Figure Sculpture in Relief and in the Round on Saturday afternoons from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. This course is for beginners and more advanced students. Figure sculpture is explored in such a way that students gain the knowledge and skills they need to work from the model. Through lectures and demonstrations students are introduced to clay modeling tools and techniques, proportion systems, useful anatomical concepts, planar structure, and the use of light and shadow to model form. Students will make rapid sketches as well as fully developed sculptures in relief and in the round. There will be a $30 model fee in addition to tuition.

The Continuing Studies Program at Bard College was initiated in 1971 to meet the needs of adults in the region who have successfully completed some accredited college work and wish to earn a bachelor's degree. Fees for the fall courses are $1,384 for 4 credits; $692 for 2 credits; and $416 to audit a course (8-credit intensive classes are considered two courses). There is a $30 registration fee in addition to the tuition.

For further information or to register, call the CSP office at 845-758-7508, e-mail, or visit Note that the College reserves the right to cancel any course due to insufficient enrollment.

# # #


back to top

This event was last updated on 01-16-2003