Off-Campus Studies is a program offered in collaboration with the Association for Continuing Education (ACE). It began in 1947 as Living Room Learning, developed by Grazella Shepherd at Cleveland College who encouraged the Women’s Association, predecessor of ACE, to help design and promote classes. Courses are eight weeks long and meet for 1.5 hours per class in locations throughout greater Cleveland. There are no written assignments or exams, but rather the classes provide an open environment for lively discussion based on meaningful examination of shared texts. Leader-Teachers facilitate the discussion and provide academic background and context. Off-Campus Studies is unique among continuing education programs because it is organized in collaboration with its participants. Designated Class Coordinators volunteer to serve as the liaison between the office and the study groups. The discussion groups select the courses with the help of the class coordinator and the office. Participation is open to everyone and groups welcome new members with enthusiasm. New groups are welcome. Please call 216.368.2090 to establish a study group in your neighborhood. Sessions require a minimum of 10 participants.
Sundays, March 19-May 7 | 5-6:30 p.m.
Nancy Fleming, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
The Harlem Renaissance was a period between 1917 and 1933 when Harlem became a center for black literature, music and art. Writers addressed diverse issues such as the importance of a black intelligentsia, radicalism, identity, interactions between blacks and whites, biracialism and whether to embrace folk tradition. These issues will be explored in the selected readings. Book: The Portable Harlem Renaissance Reader, David Levering Lewis, Editor, Penguin Books
Private Residence, 13803 Cormere Ave., Cleveland | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Mondays, March 20-May 8 | 10:30 a.m.-noon
Joe Konen, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
This book offers us a vehicle for a nuanced understanding of Islam. Carla Power, a Western reporter who grew up in several predominantly Muslim countries, writes of her dialogues with prominent India-born and now London-based Sheikh Mohammad Akram Nadwi. The dialogue enlightens us on a nonviolent understanding of Islam. The sheik shows us how he distinguishes between culture and politics on the one hand and religion and spirituality on the other. Book: Carla Power (2015), If the Oceans Were Ink: An Unlikely Friendship and a Journey to the Heart of the Quran
South Franklin Circle | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Mondays, March 20–May 15 | 1-2:30 p.m
No class April 10
Barbara Greenberg, Attorney and Magistrate
In Our Defense by Caroline Kennedy and Ellen Alderman is a primer about the Bill of Rights. Each chapter focuses on one of the first ten amendments of the United States Constitution, using an actual case to study the issues surrounding that amendment. Each week, students will review one chapter, one amendment and one case, discussing the laws that have developed from those facts. The class will use each case as the springboard for a discussion about how and why laws change, current laws focusing on that amendment and how constitutional amendments and the cases that follow those protected rights affect our daily lives. Book: In Our Defense, Caroline Kennedy and Ellen Alderman
Gates Mills Community House | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Thursdays, March 23-May 11 | 10:30 a.m.-noon
Ted Smith, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
Between mid-400 AD to mid-600 AD, Ireland practiced a unique type of Christianity. After the fall of Rome there was no central authority directing the practice of religion, no official date as to when Easter was to be observed each year, etc. The Irish embraced Christianity (without bloodshed) while still upholding their Druidic traditions. Irish men and women were both priests and bishops alike. Humanity was seen as fundamentally good, an integral part of God’s creation. All of this was contrary to the writings of Augustine of Hippo, that men were born into sin, adopted as the official positions of Christendom. The Synod of Whitby in 664 AD favored the disciple Peter as the rock of the church as opposed to the disciple John, remembered as “listening for the heartbeat of God”. What would Christianity be like today if the Synod had decided differently? Book: Listening for the Heartbeat of God, A Celtic Spirituality, The Reverend Dr. J. Philip Newell
Hamlet Village | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Thursdays, March 23–May 11 | 10-11:30 a.m.
Jim Van Horn, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
In this book discussion course, students, will talk about how Bill Bryson re-visits a unique era in American history, the 20s, sandwiched in between World War I and the Depression. He writes about familiar personalities and events--Charles Lindbergh, Babe Ruth, Al Capone, Herbert Hoover--and some not so well-known people and captures the magic of a special time. Book: Bill Bryson, One Summer: America 1927
Landmark Centre | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Fridays, March 24-May 12 | 10:30 a.m.-noon
Pamela Belknap, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
As a young social worker, Frances Perkins witnessed the traumatic Triangle Shirtwaist fire of 1911, which killed 146 workers. She immediately became an activist, as well as a lifelong advocate for critical reforms and programs. Learn how Labor Secretary Perkins teamed with FDR to create the New Deal legislation, which continues today. Books: The Woman Behind the New Deal – The Life and Legacy of Frances Perkins – Social Security, Unemployment Insurance, and the Minimum Wage, Kirstin Downey; The Roosevelt I Knew, Frances Perkins (Penguin Classics)
St. Paul's Episcopal Christ | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Fridays, March 24-May 12 | 10-11:30 a.m.
Charlene Mileti, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
In the fifth century, Athens, Greece, was a burgeoning democracy, the first of its kind to exist in human history. Born in 494 BCE, Pericles of Athens would rise to become one of the city's most beloved leaders. While Pericles' astute grasp of military and political affairs would place him at the head of Athens' government, he is, nonetheless, more memorably remembered as the tutelary leader of the city. Contrasted with our modern democracies, Pericles' government functioned as the primary source for educating the citizenry in matters of civic and personal virtue. After his death, Athens would never again flourish as it did during Pericles' leadership. Book: Pericles of Athens and the Birth of Democracy, D. Kagan
Judson Park | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Tuesdays, March 28–May 16 | 7:30–9 p.m.
Joe Konen, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
This book offers us a vehicle for a nuanced understanding of Islam. Carla Power, a Western reporter who grew up in several predominantly Muslim countries, writes of her dialogues with prominent India-born and now London-based Sheikh Mohammad Akram Nadwi. The dialogue enlightens us on a nonviolent understanding of Islam. The sheik shows us how he distinguishes between culture and politics on the one hand and religion and spirituality on the other. Book: Carla Power (2015), If the Oceans Were Ink: An Unlikely Friendship and a Journey to the Heart of the Quran.
First Unitarian Church of Cleveland | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Mondays, March 20 - May 8 | 1 -2:30 p.m.
Enid Kirtz, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
A Bloomsbury take on Victorian England featuring the Queen and the attitudes toward education, church, army (Florence Nightingale) and General Gordon. These issues still resonate in society today. Participants will explore these serious topics with a humorous approach. Books: L. Strachey, Eminent Victorians and L. Strachey, Queen Victoria
Rocky River Public Library | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Mondays, March 20–May 8 | 10–11:30 a.m.
Phyllis Asnien, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
This book discussion course explores the work of Pulitzer Prize winner Anne Tyler. Tyler's Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant is a funny, wise tale of a family who keeps trying to get it right. The author's 11th novel, Breathing Lessons, won the 1989 Pulitzer Prize. Books: A. Tyler, Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant and Breathing Lessons
Bay United Methodist Church | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Tuesdays, March 21-May 9 | 10–11:30 a.m.
Joseph Jacoby, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
In this book discussion course, participants examine English novelists who are profoundly interested in issues of ethics and morality. Iris Murdoch’s classic work examines a group of well-intentioned, but muddled idealists in the Gloucestershire countryside. The past collides with the present in Julian Barnes’ novel about the tragic death of an intimate friend. Ian McEwan’s newly published novel explores the clash of religious and secular world views in the law courts of contemporary London. Books: I. Murdoch, The Bell; J. Barnes, The Sense of an Ending; I. McEwan, The Children Act
Lakewood United Methodist Church | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Thursdays, March 23-May 11 | 10-11:30 a.m.
Barbara Parr, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
John Steinbeck is a familiar name to all of us. His voice is that of the ordinary working class person facing both internal and external challenges in life. He takes on the human struggle in a timeless and universal language. His characters are richly developed and reach into our very souls. In The Grapes of Wrath and In Dubious Battle, Steinbeck addresses social and political issues of the Depression era. During this course, we will discuss the human, social and literary aspects of these works. His novels inspire and enrich readers of all generations. Books: J. Steinbeck, In Dubious Battle and The Grapes of Wrath.
Middleburg Heights Church| Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Thursdays, March 23–May 11 | 10–11:30 a.m.
Betty Zak, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
Nicholas and Alexandra have been called saints, innocent victims, harbingers of revolution among many other names. What really happened? Was it a love that extended beyond each other? Was it a love that ended an empire? Discover their passion, their strengths and their weaknesses in a new light. We begin with the traditional reading of Massie's Nicholas and Alexandra followed by summaries of newly Russian released documents involving Rasputin, Alix and Nicky and Alexandra's lady-in- waiting. We'll then extrapolate possibilities through our second book. Books: Robert Massie, Nicholas and Alexandra; Robert Alexander, The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar
Westlake United Methodist Church| Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Tuesdays, March 21–May 9
Barbara Parr, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
This book discussion course examines George Orwell's classic 1984, which is, perhaps, more relevant today than it was when published in 1948. Discussions focus on the literary merit of the novel as well as the cultural, philosophical, and political topics Orwell includes. The course also examines Animal Farm, a political allegory and brilliant satire. Books: G. Orwell, 1984 and Animal Farm
Brecksville United Church of Christ | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >
Wednesdays, March 22-May10 | 10-11:30 a.m.
Jim Lane, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies
Can there be laws governing warfare which limit the barbarity of actions during the times of armed conflict? Indeed there can be--and are--regulations which protect human dignity and lessen suffering, regulations which have been formally agreed to by most nations. This class is based upon an international curriculum developed by the Red Cross and is composed of discussions generated by readings and video sources. Topics to be covered include 1) humanitarian actions, 2) historical codes, 3) applications of the rules of war, 4) weaponry and targeting, 5) child soldiers and prisoners of war, 6) war crimes and the particular case of My Lai, 7) judicial and non-judicial actions dealing with violations, and 8) the needs arising from the destruction of war and the special case of refugees. Printed materials will be provided at cost for their reproduction and binding.
Rosemont Country Club | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >