History and Culture Courses

Winter/Spring 2017


Benedict Arnold: From Hero to Traitor

In this program, we'll cover the personal and professional military components of Arnold's life, and how these intertwined. We'll concentrate on the military successes of Arnold during the American Revolution that made him a hero. We'll discuss the reasons why Arnold turned into a British traitor. We'll also focus upon the British loyalists that contributed to his reputation as a turncoat, including John Andre, and his aide in central Pennsylvania, Samuel Wallis. We'll discover the roles that Peggy Shippen, his wife, performed in his defection to the British cause. Finally, we'll learn about Arnold's activities after his attempt to give up West Point to the British in 1780.

Fee: $94 Senior Adult Fee: $64 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-542-M | 03/07/17-04/04/17 | R. Swartz | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register


The Beaver Wars, 1609-1701

These wars changed the landscape for both Indian nations and European colonies in 17th century Northeastern America. These changes were geographical, cultural, and political. In this program we'll examine the overall causes of the wars as well as the causes of each major war that involved Native American nations, New France, New Netherlands, and the northern British colonies, including Maryland and Pennsylvania. Well discuss the major events and results of each war and their overall impact. We'll learn how the Iroquois - The League of Nations - became the balance of power between France and Great Britain in the 18th century.

Fee: $94 Senior Adult Fee: $64 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-543-G | 01/24/17-02/14/17 | R. Swartz | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register


The History and Literature of Iceland

This four lecture series is intended to run on one Wednesday morning a month from Feb. 22 to May 24 and to provide an overview of the four major eras of Icelandic history and the literature produced in each.Iceland has an outsized history and literature for its small size and remote location. In these PowerPoint-illustrated presentations, Dr. Gray explores the settlement, early government, era of subjugation, and startling modern emergence as a leader in literacy and publishing. Presentations include powerful selections from Icelandic writings that range from its medieval sagas to the work of its Nobel Prize winning author, Halldór Laxness. The presentations include a two-hour lecture period with a ten minute break in the middle followed by a half hour for discussion that will be extended for those wishing to remain longer.

Fee: $87 Senior Adult Fee: $52 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-544-H | 02/22/17-05/24/17 | K. Gray | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register


Settlement of Iceland

A part of migration in the Viking era, Iceland's settlement was both late and uniquely documented in its medieval literature. In this lecture Dr. Gray discusses the forces contributing to its settlement, the original settlers, and the early pattern of settlement - with selections from Icelandic writings both old and new that reveal this colorful history.

Fee: $22 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-545-H | 02/22/17-02/22/17 | K. Gray | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register


Iceland's Saga Era and Their Writing

Encompassing both the time in which the saga stories are set and the somewhat later period when they were written, emphasis in this presentation is placed on Iceland's early independence, including the development of it parliament and commonwealth form of government. Included are readings from the Gragas-Iceland's early legal literature.

Fee: $22 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-546-M | 03/22/17-03/22/17 | K. Gray | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register


Summer 2017


Hypatia of Alexandria

One of the most remarkable women of the classical world, Hypatia was a mathematician, astronomer, teacher, and author who lived in Alexandria, Egypt, ca. 375 to 415 CE. Associated with Alexandria's great library and museum and the work of her father, the mathematician Theon, she lived at a time of growing tension between Christians and non-Christians that would culminate in her murder. In this lecture Dr. Gray discusses the life and times of Hypatia and the great city that was her home. The lecture from 9:30-11:30AM will be followed by a half-hour discussion period.

Fee: $22 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-113-L | 06/21/17-06/21/17 | K. Gray | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register


The Era of Dependency

Dr. Gray draws on multiple Icelandic and Scandinavian sources to explore Icelandic life first under Norway's dominance, then as part of the Kalmar Union, and finally under Denmark, culminating in the darkest era of its history. This presentation is designed to help students grasp the vast diversity of Icelandic history and experience, and to help students fully appreciate the remarkable era that follows.

Fee: $22 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-547-J | 04/19/17-04/19/17 | K. Gray | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register


Emergence of Modern Iceland

In this presentation Dr. Gray focuses on Iceland's astonishing climb from deep poverty into the successful nation that it is today. Emphasis is on its rich literary culture as exemplified by the fact that one in ten Icelanders will become published authors in their lifetime. In addition to excerpts from Nobel Laureate Halldór Laxness, Dr. Gray will provide a taste of the island's world-class mystery writers.

Fee: $22 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-548-K | 05/24/17-05/24/17 | K. Gray | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register


The Continental Army in the American Revolution: A Social History

In this program, we'll emphasize the roles performed by women and Afro-Americans in the Continental Army. We'll also cover the changing demographics in the war: who enlisted; who was recruited, and why. We'll discover how the country's changing financial conditions and rules governing a soldier's conduct contributed to mutiny. Finally, we'll see how the army was an emerging force for nationalism in our country's history.

Fee: $83 Senior Adult Fee: $50 Materials Fee: $13 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-549-L | 06/13/17-07/11/17 | R. Swartz | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register


The Creation of the Modern Supreme Court

In this program, we'll discover why and how the Supreme Court was created. We'll discover how the power of the court expanded in the 1790s. We'll learn why the court was and is considered "an active court." We'll review important cases and characteristics of the Court under four Chief Justices: John Jay; Oliver Ellsworth; John Marshall; and Roger Taney. Finally, we'll discover the myths and realities of the first ten amendments to the US Constitution (the "Bill of Rights").

Fee: $83 Senior Adult Fee: $50 Materials Fee: $13 Registration Fee: $8

DIS-552-K | 05/02/17-05/23/17 | R. Swartz | Check WebAdvisor for course details and Register