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NINE COURSES OFFERED BY THE CONTINUING STUDIES PROGRAM AT BARD COLLEGE THIS FALL Course topics include acting, art history, digital music, figure drawing, literature, politics, sculpture, and writing

Emily M. Darrow
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—The Continuing Studies Program (CSP) at Bard College will offer nine four-credit courses this fall from Tuesday, August 31, through Friday, December 17. Topics of the weekly courses include acting, art history, digital music, figure drawing, literature, politics, sculpture, and writing. Senior citizens pay only the registration fee of $30 (per course), plus any applicable laboratory or equipment fees. Other students may enroll either for credit or as auditors. The CSP office should receive registrations by Monday, August 30, accompanied by a $30 registration fee and tuition payment. On Monday evenings from 6:00 to 8:20 p.m., Justus Rosenberg, professor emeritus of languages and literature at Bard, will teach the course, “Other Voices, Other Views.” Offering a close reading of selected plays, poems, and short stories by contemporary authors from North, West, and South Africa; Egypt; the Middle East; India; and China, students in this course will analyze the works in terms of their intrinsic literary merits and the verisimilitude with which they portray the social and political conditions and problems in the different countries. Authors include: Assiya Djebar, Sembène Ousmane, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Nawal Saadawi, Chinua Achebe, Naguib Mahfouz, Tayeb Salih, Nadine Gordimer, Bessie Head, R. K. Narayan, Mahasveta Devi, and Salman Rushdie.The class will examine the extent to which these writers have been affected by native literary traditions and by foreign artistic trends and ideologies such as Christianity, Islam, Marxism, and Democratic Socialism. On Monday evenings from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., Rob van Erve, adjunct instructor with the CSP program at Bard, will teach the course, “Sculpture: Basic Skills.” Covering basic skills in woodworking and clay/wax/plaster, this course will also explore the artist’s studio practices—ideas, sketches, trials and errors, and grand proposals. It is meant to be a stepping-stone to interpreting familiar objects in a new way. Students will learn to turn sketches and materials into new and improved sketches and materials, resulting in a fresh and unexpected view of the original idea. They work toward an end result that is both the finalization of an idea and the sketch for a new one. On Tuesday evenings from 7:00 to 9:20 p.m., Diana Ayton-Shenker, former director of the Human Rights Program at Hunter College, will lead the course “Election ’04: Beyond the Headlines,” which will give a critical review of current news headlines drawn from a range of media, leading up to (and following) the presidential election. Students will examine, compare, and contrast how the national agenda is framed and how global issues are addressed in mainstream U.S. media (e.g. the New York Times, Washington Post, Newsweek, CNN, and other TV networks), foreign news sources (e.g. BBC, The Guardian), wire services (e.g. AP, Reuters), online and alternative press (e.g. Alternet, UTNE Reader), and scholarly journals (e.g. Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, World Policy Journal). The three to four issues to be discussed throughout the semester are determined by class input and the dominant headlines of the day. Particular attention will be given to the ways U.S. foreign policy is portrayed and practiced in the context of the 2004 presidential campaign. On Tuesday evenings from 6:00 to 8:20 p.m., Anne Bertrand-Dewsnap, adjunct professor at Bard, Vassar, and Marist Colleges, will teach the course “Caravaggio and His Myths.” The first half of the course will examine the life and artistic career of Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571–1610), one of the major figures in early 17th-century Italian art. The second part will explore how recent fictionalized, costume-drama biographies and films have transformed Caravaggio’s life and career into a sensationalist soap opera, complete with such colorful ingredients as sex, glamour, disgrace, scandal, and murder. No background in art history is necessary. On Tuesday evenings from 6:00 to 8:20 p.m., Jeremiah Hall, webmaster of the Charles P. Stevenson Library at Bard, will teach the course, “Digital Music and Internet Audio.” This course will examine the technology of audio for the Internet, including Mp3 and other audio compression formats. Also reviewed are the ways the digital music revolution has affected the physical and social dynamics of popular music, as well as the means of audio storage and retrieval. From there the class examines the history of sound sharing from bootlegging to Napster, and the effects it has had on the music industry. Additionally, the class looks at the future of Web audio, including digital copyright protection and the legal issues surrounding file sharing. Texts include: The Mp3 and Internet Audio Handbook: Your Guide to the Digital Music Revolution and Playback: From the Victrola to Mp3, 100 Years of Music, Machines, and Money. On Wednesday evenings from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m., Cheryl Wheat, adjunct professor of studio arts at Bard, will teach the course, “Figure Drawing.” Through lectures and demonstrations, students will learn the fundamental ideas embodied in contemporary, modern, and old master drawings. Some of the topics to be covered are proportions and geometry of the figure, gesture and contraposto, cross contours, hatching, chiaroscuro, and the development of three-dimensional volumes from two-dimensional enclosures. Emphasis is on an approach to the figure in terms of composition. Students are introduced to a wide range of aesthetic ideas and are encouraged to develop a personal vision. A variety of drawing materials are employed: chalk, graphite, pen and ink, wash, silverpoint and mixed media, with an emphasis on charcoal. Students will draw from a model during all sessions, beginning with shorter poses and then moving on to longer, more sustained studies. A $40 model fee is charged. On Wednesday evenings from 6:00 to 8:20 p.m., Teresa Vilardi, director of Bard’s Institute for Writing and Thinking, will lead the “Writer’s Workshop: The Tools of the Trade—Journals, Language Books, Commonplace Books, Travel Logs.” Focusing on methods of invention and revision, this workshop will examine the uses of notebooks, journals, and commonplace books as linguistic and intellectual resources for the writer of creative nonfiction. Students will read essays and memoirs based on notebooks and journals by such writers as Virginia Woolf, W. H. Auden, May Sarton, Kathleen Norris. This course will offer the writer an opportunity to experiment with using notebooks, “found language,” information culled from others’ texts, and visual and oral sources of inspiration to shape a piece of nonfiction. The final project for this course will be either a collection of several short pieces or one longer piece, as well as a reflective essay on the process of turning notes into a finished piece of writing. On Wednesday evenings from 6:30 to 8:50 p.m., writer Iris Litt will teach “Writing Whatever You Want to Write,” which will help clarify what and how participants want to write. Students will learn the art of revising their writing, which is often as important as the original expression. The class will discuss the fundamentals of good writing in all forms of prose or poetry, and students will examine their work in terms of these fundamentals, including story line, characterization, and dialogue. For those students who experience writer’s block, there will be intriguing take-home exercises. Publishing seminars will be offered so that students can market their work if they wish to be published. An anthology of student work may be compiled at the end of the term. By the conclusion of the 15 sessions, participants will write more easily, confidently, effectively, and prolifically. On Thursdays from 5:30 to 8:00 p.m., Naomi Thornton, visiting professor of theater at Bard, will offer a “Workshop in Method Acting.” Designed to teach specific acting skills and to make the student comfortable in front of an audience, the emphasis is on relaxation, concentration, and focus. The goals are spontaneity and freedom for the actor. Some group exercises and improvisations are included, but the work stresses individual attention. Dramatic material includes scenes, monologues, and poetry. The course is open to both beginning and advanced students. 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. Students may register by mail for the four-credit courses. In addition to the $30 registration fee (waived for senior citizens), tuition is $1,552; $465 to audit a course; or $30 per course for senior citizens age 62 or older. (Formal registration and permission of the instructor are required for senior registrants, and there may be additional laboratory or equipment fees.) For further information or to register, call the CSP office at 845-758-7508, e-mail, or visit the website: The College reserves the right to cancel any course due to insufficient enrollment. # # # (8/12/04)

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This event was last updated on 09-14-2004