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Spring 2018 Program  

Multi-Session Courses | Single-Session Courses | Tours |
Theater Productions & Classes


S1801 Shall We Dance? Four Films
Presenter: Susan Nenadic
Dates: Tuesdays, April 10, 17, 24, and May 1
Time: 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. [Please note the 4:00 p.m. end time.]
Fee: Members $32; Nonmembers $45

People have been dancing since they learned to walk. Movies of the 1930s and 1940s presented Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers sweeping gracefully across the ballroom floor. In the 1980s, movies such as Dirty Dancing, Footloose, and Flashdance captivated audiences. All of these films were very romantic. By contrast, the films we will watch in these four class sessions present more serious issues. They focus on the conflict that arises when the irresistible urge to dance collides with social norms or, even worse, when governments impose prohibitions on dance.

April 10 Shall We Dance?, 1996, Japan, directed by Masayuki Suo [English language titles]
April 17 Billy Elliot, 2000, Great Britain, directed by Stephen Daldry
April 24 Mao’s Last Dancer, 2009, Australia, directed by Bruce Beresford
May 1 Desert Dancer, 2014, Great Britain, directed by Richard Raymond

Susan Nenadic taught high school English and history. She utilized film to train her students to look at movies the way they would a piece of printed literature. Susan is currently president of a nonprofit organization building and financing a secondary school in Uganda. She has published many historical articles as well as two books: A Purse of her Own: Occupations of Nineteenth Century Women, and Legendary Locals of Ann Arbor. Susan regularly presents programs for groups throughout Michigan.


S1802 Creative Writing Workshop
Presenter: Jane Bridges
Dates: Thursdays, April 12, May 3, May 31, and June 28
Time: 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. [Please note the 4:00 p.m. end time.]
Fee: Members $32; Nonmembers $45
Class Size: Enrollment for this class is limited to 12 attendees.

Led by published poet and retired teacher Jane Bridges, this workshop offers a relaxed setting for writers of all interests and levels. Jane will suggest methods for mining memories, maintaining a journal, and adding music and mystery to both prose and poetry. Whether you would like to delve into family history, memoir, or fantasy, or discover new formats, this workshop can help. Sharing your drafts with peers and listening to their reactions is a proven road to more effective writing. In this small group you will never feel overwhelmed or overlooked, and you will meet new friends whose lively company you will enjoy. Please bring 13 copies of your work for distribution among the participants – up to two pages for poetry, three pages for prose.

Jane Bridges grew up in Texas and New Hampshire, and in India. She has lived in Ann Arbor for more than 50 years and has taught writing in both public and private schools. Jane’s poems have been accepted for publication in the journals Paterson Literary Review, Sow’s Ear Poetry Review, Third Wednesday, and The MacGuffin. She will be assisted by co-facilitator Carol Westfall.


S1803 Ingrid Bergman: Sweden’s Gift to Hollywood
Presenter: Hedy Brodak
Dates: Wednesdays, April 18 and 25
Time: 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. [Please note the 4:00 p.m. end time.]
Fee: Members $16; Nonmembers $25

Her name conjures beauty, grace, talent, and style. One of the greatest actresses of her time, Ingrid Bergman is best remembered for a natural and vulnerable persona which was both genuine and alluring. During our first class session we will view Ingrid Bergman Remembered, a loving retrospective of her life, including the scandal that threatened to end her career. The following week we will watch Spellbound, Alfred Hitchcock’s 1945 film noir thriller. It tells the story of a new director of a mental asylum who turns out not to be what he claims, and features a dream sequence designed by surrealist painter Salvador Dali. The film stars Ingrid Bergman, Gregory Peck, Michael Chekhov, Rhonda Fleming and Leo G. Carroll. This presentation will include a lot of fun and interesting film trivia!

Hedy Brodak retired in 2007 as the Assistant Library Director of the Troy Public Library, where she particularly enjoyed planning film and book discussion events for library patrons. She continues
to enjoy the study of films and their relationship to current times.


S1804 Best-Seller Book Club
Presenter: Shirley Southgate
Dates: Mondays, April 30, June 4, and June 25
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. [Please note the end time for June 4 is 4:00 p.m.]
Fee: Members $24; Nonmembers $35

Using prepared questions and our own observations, the discussion each month will explore a book from current best-seller lists. Selected books for the Spring 2018 semester are:

April 30: Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis, by J.D. Vance (Nonfiction)
June 4: The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie (Fiction)

June 25: The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women
Who Helped Win WWII
, by Denise Kiernan (Nonfiction)

Please read Hillbilly Elegy before the first class. A list of discussion questions for each book will be sent to registrants prior to each Book Club session.

Shirley Southgate is a long-time member of both Elderwise and the Best-Seller Book Club. She is an avid reader and looks forward to a lively exchange of ideas, opinions, and interpretations.


S1805 Islam’s Internal Diversity
Presenter: Michael Fahy
Dates: Wednesdays, May 2 and 9
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Fee: Members $16; Nonmembers $25

Although Islam has been very much in our Western news (not just for years, but for decades), that faith of 1.6 billion people continues to be widely misunderstood. This is not only because of lack of knowledge, but because much of what many imagine they know is based on distortion and
misrepresentation. The problem lies in part with a tendency to ascribe a monolithic or univocal character to Islam – “Why does Islam say X?” “Why do Muslims do Y?” – rather than attempting to understand how different notions of Islam have been put into practice at different times in history and different places around the globe. In these two class sessions, we will focus on the rich diversity within the unity of Islam, and on some of Islam’s main currents and movements. We will discuss how these have articulated with the economic, political, and cultural realities of the societies in which they have emerged.

Michael Fahy holds a Ph.D. degree from the University of Michigan and currently teaches in the University’s School of Education. Michael is an anthropologist of the Middle East, where he lived and pursued research for several years. Since 2004 he has offered instruction on Middle Eastern history and culture to American military personnel in the United States and Europe.


S1806 The Detroit Tigers 1968 World Championship:
A Golden Anniversary
Presenter: Chris Hee
Dates: Fridays, May 4 and 11
Time: 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. [Please note the 4:00 p.m. end time.]
Fee: Members $16; Nonmembers $25

Tiger fans, come take a break from your multi-year penance of rooting for a Detroit Tigers team in the throes of rebuilding. Join us as we follow the 1968 Tiger World Championship, which was won in the last World Series before playoffs became part of post-season baseball. Relive the heroics of Detroit’s McLain, Lolich, Kaline, Horton, Freehan, and their 1968 teammates. In this class we will trace their exploits and success, from the season’s opening day loss to the defending American League champion Red Sox, to the final victory in the seventh game of the World Series over Bob Gibson and the defending world champion St. Louis Cardinals.

Chris Hee is a retired math professor at Eastern Michigan University. He has taught a number of classes for Elderwise, including math-related and puzzle-related topics, such as How to Lie with Statistics. Chris is a sports enthusiast and historian of the game of baseball. He attended his first Tiger game in 1958, and has been an avid Tiger fan ever since. His previous classes on baseball include a brief history of the Tigers, and of the Baseball Hall of Fame.


S1807 The Joy of Gardening and Plant Exchange
Presenter: Keith Germain
Dates: Mondays, May 7 and 14
Time: 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. [Please note the 4:00 p.m. end time.]
Fee: Members $16; Nonmembers $25

To all of our long-time gardeners, as well as beginners and would-be gardeners: Please bring your gardening problems and questions to this course! Master Gardener Keith Germain will discuss new information and approaches, with a special focus on insects and plant diseases. He will also discuss invasive species in the garden, along with the art and science of composting. If weather conditions permit, class members will enjoy an additional opportunity for plant exchange.

Keith Germain has more than 60 years of gardening experience. He plants his own quarter-acre garden with vegetables, herbs, and flowers. Over the years, Keith has worked with several horticulture groups, as well as with plant and flower clubs. He has taught gardening courses regularly with the Elderwise lifelong learning program since 1993.


S1808 Women in the New Testament
Presenter: Ken Phifer
Dates: Tuesdays, May 8, 15, 22, 29, and June 5
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Fee: Members $40; Nonmembers $55

In this course we will look at each of the 27 New Testament books to see what roles the women played, how these women have been regarded by scholars and religious leaders, and how they are regarded today. We will also examine various passages and stories that reflect attitudes towards women that are part of the Western religious heritage. We will read the books in what is generally regarded as the order in which they were written, not the order in which they appear in the New Testament, beginning with the two letters to the Thessalonians and then the two letters to the Corinthians. The first class will be an introduction to the New Testament and the society within which it was created. Our classes will include both lecture and discussion.

Ken Phifer is a graduate of Harvard College and the University of Chicago Divinity School. He has been a Unitarian Universalist minister for 45 years, 25 of which were with the Ann Arbor congregation. Ken has taught many courses for Elderwise.


S1809 Oscar Wilde: The Picture of Dorian Gray
and The Importance of Being Earnest
Presenter: George Stewart
Dates: Wednesdays, May 9, 16, and 23
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon
Fee: Members $24; Nonmembers $35
Class Size: Enrollment for this class is limited to 12 attendees.

Oscar Wilde, full of genius, charm and style, was the darling of London's high artistic and intellectual society during the last couple of decades of the 19th century. But, famously – and, in the end, ruinously – he was leading a double life. In his two greatest works, Dorian Gray and Being Earnest, Wilde displays, not only his justly celebrated wit, but also his preoccupation with the dual nature of human existence. In our first meeting, we will take up the first eight chapters of Dorian Gray, roughly the first half of this short novel.

George Stewart practiced law for many years in Kansas City, Chicago, Detroit, New York City, and Ann Arbor. He is honing his retirement skills by reading, and rereading, great writers like Oscar Wilde. He looks forward to sharing the pleasures of both The Picture of Dorian Gray and The Importance of Being Earnest with like-minded readers.


S1810 Poets Transforming Grief into Beauty
Presenter: Leonore Mohill Gerstein
Dates: Fridays, June 1 and 8
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Fee: Members $16; Nonmembers $25
Text: The instructor will provide copies of the designated poems in advance of the class sessions. The poems are also readily available online, and in The Norton Anthology of Poetry, a standard resource.

Walt Whitman, John Milton, and Alfred, Lord Tennyson – each of these poets lost a beloved male friend to early death, and each created a masterpiece while working through grief and seeking solace. As we read When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd," "Lycidas," and portions of "In Memoriam," we will linger on the imagery and music of the poems to discover how these devices yield meaning and poetic beauty for the reader.

Leonore Mohill Gerstein was born in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and spent many of her formative years in Israel, first at a kibbutz, and then in Jerusalem, where she earned a bachelor's degree in English and philosophy. Leonore is passionate about poetry and is always eager to explore a variety of works with veteran and new Elderwise members.


S1811 Embodying Holiness: A Brief History of Icons
Presenter: Michael R. Kapetan


From its earliest days, the Christian faith has employed images (eikona in Greek) to share stories among a largely illiterate populace. In the Eastern Orthodox denominations of Christianity, these humble pictures have evolved into holy icons. They are woven into the very fabric of worship. They are received not simply as pictures of holy people, but as the actual embodiment of holiness itself. These icons bring the faithful into direct contact with the community of saints. In this class, with the expert guidance of artist Michael Kapetan, we will examine the extraordinary circumstances that led to this transformation of an art form into a form of spiritual reality.

Michael R. Kapetan is an artist whose own work is informed by the scientific, the aesthetic, and the spiritual as he creates holy images for churches, synagogues, and temples, plus unique solar sculptures that mark the turning of the seasons. Mike is retired from the University of Michigan School of Art. He holds a degree in art history from Harvard University, and a master’s degree in sculpture from the University of Michigan.


S1812 Taking Apart the News (TATN): The Importance of Real News
Presenter: Al Chambers
Dates: Wednesdays, June 6, 13, 20, and 27
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Fee: Members $32; Nonmembers $45

The past few years have been a time of great challenge and stress for the world’s media. Some participants in Taking Apart the News have encouraged presenter Al Chambers to take differing approaches: Some would like him to concentrate more tightly on the immediate news of the week in which they attend. Others advise they already know the details of the news and would prefer to have the classes focus on why a development or an event is news, and discuss how well or badly the media is covering it. And, still others would like the classes to include more subjects – subjects that go beyond tensions experienced only in the United States. In these TATN spring sessions we will strive to divide the time effectively among these somewhat contradictory goals. As always, newcomers to our TATN discussions are welcome.

Al Chambers will utilize his long experience as a journalist, corporate communications executive and, more recently, consultant about news, information, and reputation in our extremely polarized and fast-changing world. Hold on to your seats!


S1813 Classic Films of the French Cinema
Presenter: Edward Couture
Dates: Tuesdays, June 12 and 19
Time: 1:00 to 3:30 p.m. [Please note the 3:30 p.m. end time.]
Fee: Members $16; Nonmembers $25

The conventional wisdom of cinematic history tells us that, in the beginning, all was silence and only in black and white. But, that really was not the case! In these sessions on classic French cinema, we will look back to the 1890s and learn that early films usually had some form of musical accompaniment and that there were, at times, even bits and flashes of color. We will begin on June 12 with the Lumière Brothers, Louis and August, and Georges Méliès (1890s The Beginnings), and Albert Lamorisse’s The Red Balloon. On June 19, we will view Jacques Tati’s classic Mr. Hulot’s Holiday. Please do not miss this opportunity to experience the genius of early film-making.

Edward Couture earned his master’s degree in French and Russian from Middlebury College in Vermont. Edward moved to Ann Arbor in 1997, after retiring from 35 years of teaching in the Los Angeles City schools. He is a student of languages, history, and world cinema.


S1814 Zora Neale Hurston: Their Eyes Were Watching God
Presenter: Kevin Eyster
Dates: Thursdays, June 14 and 21
Time: 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. [Please note 4:00 p.m. end time.]
Fee: Members $16; Nonmembers $25
Text: Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God.
Several inexpensive editions of this book are available in local bookstores or at online booksellers, as well as in local libraries.

Zora Neale Hurston was a literary artist in search of her voice, her art, and her vision. Written in 1937 during America’s Great Depression, Their Eyes Were Watching God is a watershed text. It is a novel depicting and delineating a heroine who chooses to tell her story rather than become a “tragic mulatto.” Hurston uses folklore to educate and socialize, and to moralize and admonish – all in an effort to achieve social integration and maintain social stability. She also infuses her literary canon with the voices and visions of authentic African American experiences, to which this novel is a testimonial. In addition to reading and discussing the book, we will also view a documentary on Hurston’s life and readings from her work by the actress Ruby Dee.

Kevin Eyster teaches literature courses at Madonna University. His special interests include American folklore and African American literature. While also serving as Chair of the Language and Literature Department and Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities, Kevin still finds time to do what he enjoys doing
most – teaching and discussing a wide range of American literature.


S1815 Germany: Trains, Trams, and Churches
Presenter: H. Mark Hildebrandt
Dates: Fridays, June 22 and 29
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon
Fee: Members $16; Nonmembers $25

Mark Hildebrandt takes us through southwestern Germany and the German-speaking regions of Switzerland on his quest to ride and photograph electric-powered railways. The region is known for its mountain scenery, its cathedral cities, and its half-timbered small towns. On June 22 we start at Paris and pay homage to some of that city’s renowned churches. Then we board a high-speed train for Stuttgart, a favored destination of tram and trolley enthusiasts. Next, our journey takes us at a slower pace to the cities of Freiburg, Augsburg, and Ulm. At the June 29 session, we will see historic Strasbourg, in France, at the German border. Then we return to Germany, visiting the cities of Nuremberg and Wurzburg before heading to Bern, Switzerland. Our final stop will be the town of Zermatt located at the base of the Matterhorn in the high Alps.

H. Mark Hildebrandt is a retired pediatrician who taught and practiced medicine in Ann Arbor for 50 years. He is a local history enthusiast with a lifelong interest in electric railroads and street cars. He is the co-author, with Martha Churchill, of Electric Trolleys of Washtenaw County (2009). Mark is also the author of A History of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, Ann Arbor, Part II (2014).




 S1816 The Life of Sojourner Truth as Told by Laura Haviland
Presenter: Beverly Fish
Date: Monday, April 9
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

Laura Haviland and Sojourner Truth became good friends during the fight for the abolition of slavery. Assuming the role of Laura Haviland, our presenter Beverly Fish will relate the life and times of Sojourner Truth, one of America’s most famous champions of abolishing slavery, and establishing women's rights and suffrage. Born in upstate New York circa 1797, Sojourner Truth was the self-given name, from 1843 onward, of Isabella Baumfree, an African-American abolitionist and women's rights activist. Truth was born into slavery, but escaped to freedom with her infant daughter in 1826. She devoted her life to the abolitionist cause, and helped recruit black troops for the Union Army. Truth later made her home in Battle Creek, Michigan.

Beverly Fish has taught Women's History at the Center for Creative Studies and is a member of the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame and Historical Museum. Beverly wrote the chapter on Sojourner Truth for the book, Historic Women of Michigan.


S1817 Race and Culture: Lessons from a Prison Classroom
Presenter: Judy Patterson Wenzel
Date: Monday, April 9
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

Judy Wenzel has just published Light from the Cage: 25 Years in a Prison Classroom. She says: “I wrote this book because the prison fence, with its loops of razor wire, is a powerful and sinister symbol. It sends the message that the people inside must be bad, and dangerous. And, the fence separates us from prison populations, and from knowing these fellow citizens as they really are.” For 25 years, Judy witnessed her students' delight, courage and resolve as they worked toward the treasured goal of graduating from high school. She was witness to their humanity, their compassion, and their wisdom every day. And, early on, she knew their stories needed to be shared. Recognizing how difficult it is to avoid issues of race when talking about mass incarceration, we will discuss in this class the school-to-prison pipeline, the demographics of who is incarcerated, and the value of learning one's own cultural heritage.

Judy Patterson Wenzel grew up in northern Michigan and raised her own family there. After moving to Ann Arbor, Judy taught many subjects in the Milan prison education program between 1986 and 2010, primarily in the fields of English and social studies. Judy misses her students, but writing about them has kept them close.


S1818 Personal Computer and Internet Security
Presenter: Harvey Juster
Date: Wednesday, April 11
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

This class focuses on Windows PCs, but most of the advice also applies to Apple computers. Harvey Juster will describe ways you can protect both your computer data and your personal identity. He will cover methods of keeping your computer safer by installing antivirus software and enabling software updates, and ways to avoid such email and web security threats as ransomware and phishing. Harvey will also discuss alternative means of backing up files, the best practices for choosing passwords, how to keep wireless transmissions secure, the latest internet and telephone scams, common-sense tips for Facebook security, and the basics of preventing identity theft. He will provide an update on the massive Equifax security breach, with suggested steps for protecting yourself from the resulting exposure. Throughout, there will be ample opportunities for individual questions.

Harvey Juster is a semi-retired IT consultant who has guided friends, family, and businesses through the task of protecting their data from internal and external threats. He holds an engineering degree from the University of Michigan and is a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer.


S1819 Stories In Stone – A Walk in the Cemetery
Presenter: Rochelle Balkam
Date: Wednesday, April 11 at the Red Cross Building
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

There is no single site in the community that tells its story with more drama than the cemetery. It is the one place where we can trace our “roots” in what is becoming a “rootless” society. There are the pioneers and the rich and famous lying side by side with the poor and not so famous. There are scoundrels and saints, infants and centenarians. Each gravestone has a story to tell. Traveling from Alaska to Key West, from Hawaii to Canada, from New Zealand to England, we find myriad examples of burial customs and symbolism on gravestones. In the words of our presenter, “We wish to encourage communities to focus on one of their most significant historical resources – the local cemetery.”

Rochelle Balkam taught history and government at Ypsilanti High for 36 years and taught Michigan history at Eastern Michigan University (EMU) for 27 years. She holds both an M.A. degree in history and an M.S. in historic preservation from EMU. Rochelle serves on the board of the Michigan One-Room Schoolhouse Association, and is a former board member of the Historical Society of Michigan and the Ann Arbor Historic District Commission.


S1820 A.E. Housman: A Shropshire Lad
Presenter: Will Horwath
Date: Friday, April 13
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Text: A.E. Housman, A Shropshire Lad. Dover Thrift Edition, 1990. Paperback.

Sixty-three short lyrics, written in 1896. British infantrymen carried it in the breast-pockets of their tunics during World War I. They believed Housman to be a kindred spirit, a war poet. After the war, it traveled in the breast-pockets of a generation who had taken up rambling and rediscovering the English countryside. And, today, in the 21st century, it remains one of the most popular books of English poetry, apparently filling some Brexity yearning for pastoral landscapes. Indeed, A Shropshire Lad has never been out of print. Will Horwath invites you to “put a copy in your pocket and carry it on down to Elderwise where we may enjoy and speak the poems together, and look at the England that Housman called ‘the land of lost content.’”

Will Horwath holds a Ph.D. in English language and literature from the University of Michigan. He has taught literature and creative writing at Moravian College, the University of Michigan, and Oakland University. He most recently taught at Madonna University in the Department of Language, Literature, Communication and Writing.


 S1821 Black and White Like You and Me:
Parallel Lines Sometimes Intersect (A Detroit Story)
Presenters: Thomas Daniels and Thomas Marsh
Date: Monday, April 16
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

Join us for a morning of recollection, as Thomas “Whitey” Daniels and Thomas “Cookie” Marsh
conjure memories about the “good ol’ days.” Have you ever become lost in a story, a movie, or even a song, that took you back to a specific time, place, or person? In this class we will discuss both the similarities and the uniqueness of blacks and whites growing up and living in urban America. You will be challenged to put aside ignorance which causes preconceptions and stereotypes. Perhaps Daniels and Marsh will even help you improve your perception of racial issues in America. Hopefully you will laugh at, appreciate, and relate to much of what Cookie and Whitey went through to arrive at the intersection of their parallel lives and lines.

Thomas “Whitey” Daniels and Thomas “Cookie” Marsh met in a Geezer basketball league in Detroit, became friends, and together founded the Black and White Like You and Me movement in the Detroit area. Their book by the same title is available at bookstores and some libraries, and on Amazon Kindle.


S1822 A Story of Hope: Jews in the Netherlands during World War II
Presenter: Anneke Burke
Facilitator: Al Chambers
Date: Wednesday, May 30
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

This is an amazing and inspiring story about Anneke Burke’s family during the World War II German occupation of the Netherlands, about the horrors of the Holocaust, and about heroism and hope. Anneke has made it her mission to share her family’s story, and her own harrowing experience as a youngster in Utrecht – an experience that had a fortunate outcome. For more than 40 years, Anneke has told her Story of Hope, accompanied by photos from the period, to audiences of all ages. We are honored to have her share it with us. Al Chambers will introduce the class and facilitate the Question-and-Answer segment after the presentation.

Anneke Burke went from Europe to Israel in 1962, where she met and married her American husband. With him, she relocated to the United States, and has spent most of her adult life in Michigan, both in the Detroit area and in the small northern town of Mayville. Anneke often returns to the Netherlands, and to Israel. She is known for being gentle, but wise, about the ways of the world, and the risks and dangers that our political and social systems face.


S1823 America and the World: The Eisenhower-Dulles Years, 1953-1961
Presenter: Michael Homel
Date: Wednesday, April 18
Time: 9:30 a.m. to 12 noon [Please note the 9:30 a.m. start time.]

Flaming threats from the United States government. Russian aggression in eastern Europe. War and revolution in the Middle East. High stakes clashes with China. American intervention in the affairs of small nations. Does all of this sound familiar? While these could be today’s headlines, they were also episodes in the 1950s. As a sequel to his Fall 2017 class on the origins and early years of the Cold War, Mike Homel will survey personalities and events in the Eisenhower-Dulles era. Major themes will include U.S.-Soviet competition, the impact of the Red Scare, rising militant rhetoric and the gap between rhetoric and action, the United States overthrow of foreign leaders, and rising nationalism and neutralism abroad. Join us as we examine events in eastern and western Europe, the Middle East, Latin America, and East and Southeast Asia, and identify what has changed and what remains the same.

Michael Homel is Professor Emeritus of History at Eastern Michigan University. Mike specializes in 20th century United States history and U.S. urban history. He is the author of several books and publications on American history, and on urban politics and education.


S1824 Famous Churches and Cathedrals of the World
Presenter: Toby Teorey
Date: Thursday, April 19
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

In most parts of the world, churches are prominent on the skylines of great cities and even in small villages. In many instances, these buildings have also been the most important structures for visitors to see, and are places of great civic pride. In this class we will enjoy visually stunning video lectures by award-winning Professor William R. Cook of The Great Courses series. Professor Cook will discuss three of the world’s most famous churches and cathedrals: Hagia Sophia (a Byzantine church, later a mosque, and now a museum) in Istanbul; St. Basil’s (a Russian Orthodox cathedral) in Moscow, with its colorful onion domes; and the historic gothic Chartres Cathedral in France. In this class we will see color photos and video tours that show and explain the architecture, setting, and religious meaning of the sculptures, stained-glass windows, and interiors of each structure. We will allocate adequate discussion time for class members to recall and relate their own experiences with visits to these churches.

Toby Teorey is a former chair of the Elderwise Council. He is retired from the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan, and in retirement pursues his enduring interest in world events and cultures.


S1825 All About Spain (Well, almost...)
Presenter: George Jabol
Date: Thursday, April 19
Time: 1:00 to 3:30 p.m. [Please note the 3:30 p.m. end time.]

The best-laid travel itineraries can go awry, but sometimes, as in this 14-day Western European Cruise, re-routed destinations can turn into unexpected treasures. On this trip George Jabol lost three days in Portugal due to a labor strike, but gained two ports in Spain and one in France. The ship went first to Gibraltar, which was explored from the summit on down. Next came a series of walking tours in historic and beautiful Spanish cities, including Cartagena, Palma de Mallorca, Barcelona, Alicante, Almeria (Granada), and Cadiz (Seville). The final stop was in a picturesque corner of Normandy which featured quaint fishing villages and sturdy stone buildings.

George Jabol received his B.A. degree from Muskingum College in Ohio, and a Ph.D. in English language and literature from the University of Michigan. Retired from a career with the federal government, George is currently self-employed as a consultant on Social Security, and creates photographic slide shows as a way to remember his trips and share them with others.


S1826 The Archaeology of an Early Swahili Society in the Indian Ocean
Presenter: Henry T. Wright
Date: Friday, April 27
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

In the 20th and 21st centuries, archaeologists have built new understandings of the earliest civilizations. In Afro-Eurasia we have vastly richer understanding of the great civilizations in Mesopotamia, Egypt, the Indus Valley, the great river valleys of China, and the savannahs of both West Africa and Southern Africa. We have also learned much about previously little-known civilizations in the lands between these early centers. In this class we will trace the story of 40 years of research on the Comoro Islands between the coasts of East Africa and Madagascar. Using archival images and artifacts from the University of Michigan’s Museum of Anthropological Archaeology, Professor Wright will trace the development of this archipelago from village societies to prosperous city-states over a millennium from AD 700 to the present.

Henry Wright has studied the development of complex societies since the early 1960s. His doctoral research at the University of Chicago focused on early Mesopotamia. His work in Iraq and Iran led him to parallel studies in the Western Indian Ocean, including the little-known Comoro Islands. Henry is currently Professor of Anthropology at the University of Michigan, and Curator of Near Eastern Collections at the University’s Museum of Anthropology.


S1827 Exceptional Composers of the 20th Century:
Dmitri Shostakovich and Aaron Copland
Presenter: Toby Teorey
Date: Friday, April 20
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

Two of the most influential composers in the 20th century were Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975) and Aaron Copland (1900-1990). Their life stories were very different, however, and reflected the extreme political and cultural differences between the then Soviet Union and the United States. Shostakovich lived under the brutal repression of Stalin and his successors in the Soviet regime from 1917 to 1975. The Keeping Score video, narrated by Michael Tilson Thomas, reveals how Shostakovich managed to survive and complete an incredible body of work, including his 5th Symphony. Copland was an American composer, teacher of composition, and conductor of the distinctly American music he wrote. He is best known to the public for the works he wrote in a deliberately accessible style, including the ballets Appalachian Spring, Billy the Kid, and Rodeo, as well as his Fanfare for the Common Man and Third Symphony.

Toby Teorey is a former chair of the Elderwise Council. He is retired from the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan, and in retirement pursues his enduring interest in classical music.


S1828 American Comic Books: The First 125 Years
Presenter: George Hagenauer
Date: Monday, April 23
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

Proliferating superhero movies have led many to see comic books in a limited fashion. We forget that serious movies such as Road to Perdition, Ghost World, and American Splendor were also based on comics. Although the first American comic books were published as far back as the 1850s, this presentation will focus on the critical era from approximately 1920 to the late 1970s. It will cover the invention of today’s modern comic book and the quirky publishers and artists who developed the form. We will explore the full richness of comics from Donald Duck and Archie to the Green Hornet, and specialized genres like romance, war, westerns, crime, and science fiction. Our presenter will share examples from his personal collection of original drawings and paintings created for early comic books.

George Hagenauer has been fascinated with comics of all types since childhood. He holds a journalism degree from Northwestern University, and recently retired from a directorship career with various nonprofit organizations. George was on the team that created and ran the Chicago Comicon. And, for ten years, he wrote a column on collecting original comic art for the Comic Buyer’s Guide. He has published books and articles on the history of crime, mystery, and adventure magazines.


S1829 Elderwise Sewing Circle: A Community Service Project
Presenter: Joan Bulmer
Date: Monday, April 23
Time: 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. [Please note the 4:00 p.m. end time.]
Class Size: Enrollment for this class is limited to 12.
Fee: Members $13; Nonmembers $20 [Fees include $5 for materials.]

Let’s create an old-fashioned sewing circle. Join us for this hands-on class, and make an apron to donate to Friends in Deed, a nonprofit community service organization in Ypsilanti that responds to the unmet needs of low income families in Washtenaw County. The aprons we create in this class will be used by their lunch servers. All skills (or no skills!) are welcome for an afternoon of sewing. Come and chat, apply an old or learn a new skill, or simply revive your interest in sewing. All supplies, fabric, sewing machines, irons, etc., will be provided.

Joan Bulmer currently serves as Treasurer for Elderwise. She is a talented seamstress. Her skills are the product of many years of sewing with the 4-H organization, as well as a renewed interest since her retirement. Joan would love to share her hobby with you.


S1830 A Founding Father of Rock ‘n’ Roll: Fats Domino (1928-2017)
Presenter: Michael Homel
Date: Wednesday, April 25
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

When Elvis Presley was called the king of rock ‘n’ roll by a reporter in Las Vegas, Elvis motioned to a nearby Fats Domino, saying, “There’s the real king of rock ‘n’ roll.” With 36 Top Forty hits and 65 million single records sold, Fats Domino, who died at 89 last October, was a founder of America’s most powerful music. Starting with “The Fat Man” (1949), Domino transformed boogie woogie piano and rhythm and blues into a new musical genre. Collaborating with Dave Bartholomew, Domino reworked old standards (“My Blue Heaven,” “Blueberry Hill”) and introduced new ones (“I’m Walkin’,” “Blue Monday,” “Ain’t That a Shame”). Unlike other rock pioneers, Fats’ joyous vocals, constant smiles, and soft Creole accent presented a non-sexual, non-threatening image. Thus, Domino helped build a mass white audience for the new music, which was based in black traditions. In this class we will learn about Domino’s New Orleans world, then celebrate his life and music.

Michael Homel is Professor Emeritus of History at Eastern Michigan University. Mike specializes in 20th century U.S. history and U.S. urban history. He is the author of several books and publications on urban politics and education, as well as an avid student of American pop music and culture.


S1831 Crossing Lines for Understanding:
Exploring Life through the Art of David Barr
Presenter: Ken Stevens
Date: Thursday, April 26
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

From the soaring stainless steel arch of Transforming, in Detroit’s Hart Plaza, to his global sculptures around the world, David Barr’s art work has inspired artists, educators, cultural leaders, scholars, and policy makers to explore the mystery and magic of life. In this presentation, Ken Stevens will take us on a whirlwind journey around the world, interpreting scores of images of David’s artwork, crossing lines — lines that define borders and time zones, naturally occurring lines, cultural lines, starting lines, goal lines, and places of tension, creativity, and understanding. A Michigan native,

David Barr founded the Michigan Legacy Art Park, a 30-acre wilderness sculpture park on the grounds of Crystal Mountain Resort. The City of Novi will soon open a second art park at Barr’s former home, Villa Barr. In 1972, Professor Emeritus Ken Stevens joined the faculty of Eastern Michigan University (EMU) where he created both the musical theater program and the graduate and undergraduate programs in arts management. Ken retired from EMU in 2014. He is past president of the Michigan Legacy Art Park, where he created the park’s educational program, and is currently serving as advisor to Villa Barr.


S1832 Lake Michigan and the Art Coast
Presenter: Suzanne Bilek
Date: Thursday, April 26
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

Come join us as we experience the history of the Great Lakes through the eyes of Michigan artists. Our presenter, Suzanne Bilek, will share her unique program, which features colorful artwork and takes us on a visual tour of one of the greatest natural resources in the world. Her all-color presentations show the painters, pictures, and patrons of Michigan and Detroit, with a narrative of historical context. We will visit Lake Michigan, and the west side of our state, currently referred to as the “Art Coast,” and learn about the unusual topography, landmarks, flora, and fauna that lure vacationers. Suzanne will show us artwork that tells the colorful story of towns, dunes, lighthouses, recreation and more, from the present and from the past! We will also hear the story of local Native Americans and of the lumber and shipping industries of bygone eras. This program offers a thoroughly enjoyable way to see the sights that make Michigan so special. Please do not miss this unique show!

Suzanne Bilek, Artrepreneur, specializes in local art and history. She holds a degree from Oakland University, and has presented hundreds of illustrated lectures over the last five years. Suzanne is a native of Detroit, where her family originally settled over 100 years ago. She is also the author of the book Great Female Artists of Detroit.


S1833 Miss Morgan and Mister Hearst:
A Famous Architectural Collaboration
Presenter: Connie Olson
Date: Monday, April 30
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

Julia Morgan was a quiet, dedicated architect who cared nothing about public recognition. William Randolph Hearst was a flamboyant publisher, businessman, and collector who sought attention in everything he did. Despite the vast differences in their backgrounds and personalities, they formed a remarkable collaboration to create the amazing complex of buildings, commonly known as Hearst Castle, at San Simeon, California. In this class we will learn about and discuss these unique individuals and the spectacular result of their collaboration.

Connie Olson is a long-time library enthusiast and an expert on the Carnegie Libraries of the United States. She also has a strong interest in the architecture of these and other great buildings.


S1834 Through the Looking Glass: America's Presidential Wonderland
Presenters: Jeffrey Bernstein, Michael Homel, and Lawrence Kestenbaum
Date: Wednesday, May 2
Time: 9:30 a.m. to 12 noon [Please note the 9:30 a.m. start time.]

By the time we meet for this panel discussion, we will be 18 months past the stunning 2016 election, and almost one-third of the way through the Trump presidency. Join us as we consider the policy successes and failures of the current administration, on local, national, and international scales. Our panelists will discuss what is new with the Mueller probe, and what consequences may be on the horizon from that investigation. The panelists will also extrapolate from the general and special elections of 2017, and help us to consider the implications of the Trump presidency for the upcoming, hotly contested, 2018 midterm elections. They will offer some predictions, as well, on what has largely been an unpredictable epoch in the annals of this American experiment with democracy. Jeffrey Bernstein studies and teaches political science and American politics at Eastern Michigan University. He specializes in public opinion and political behavior. Michael Homel is Professor Emeritus of History at Eastern Michigan University. Mike’s special expertise is in the fields of 20th century American history, and American urban history.

Larry Kestenbaum is the Washtenaw County Clerk/Register of Deeds. He was first elected in 2004. Larry is the creator and owner of, the Internet’s most comprehensive source for American political biography.


S1835 The Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge (IWR)
Presenter: Jennifer Braatz
Date: Thursday, May 3
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

The Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge, known throughout Michigan as the IWR, is the only preserve of its kind in North America. The IWR was established in 2001, and is managed jointly by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service and the Canadian Wildlife Service. Situated in and near the heart of a major metropolitan area, the refuge occupies almost 6,000 acres of scattered property, consisting primarily of coastal wetlands, marshes (notably Humbug Marsh), islands, shoals, and waterfront land along 48 miles of the Detroit River and Western Lake Erie shorelines. This presentation offers an abundance of information about a remarkable local natural treasure, and its critical role in protecting wildlife habitat and migrations.

Jennifer Braatz is a Naturalist Park Ranger with the IWR. She holds a degree in environment, natural resources, and anthropology from the University of Wyoming, where she studied Greater Yellowstone otters, deer, and wolves. She has also served as a Peace Corps environmental volunteer in Nicaragua, and as a Park Ranger Naturalist with wildlife refuges in the State of Virginia. Jennie joined the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge in 2014.


S1836 Like Father, Like Son: The Autobiography of a Birder
Presenter: Ray Stocking
Date: Friday, May 4
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

In this class Ray Stocking shares the story of his unusual introduction to bird watching some 25 years ago. During Ray’s senior year in college, with very little birding experience and no binoculars, his father, Jerome Stocking, asked Ray to join in an overnight birding trip. This was the trip that would alter Ray’s world forever. From this story, you will discover which single bird changed Ray’s life in a flash. There would be no turning back after this bird. Highlights of this presentation include 25 years of father-and-son birding, some of their hundreds of life birds, travels near and far, and the day when the father and the son reversed their roles.

Ray Stocking is the current Board Chair for Michigan Audubon and a past president of the Washtenaw Audubon Society. Ray helped develop birding programs for the Washtenaw Elementary Science Olympiad, which continues to inspire young grade school students as to the joys of our feathered friends. Ray resides in Ann Arbor with his wife and their two teenage children.


S1837 Classical Music in the Movies
Presenter: Toby Teorey
Date: Thursday, May 10
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

Have you ever watched a movie and suddenly become aware of a beautiful musical piece being played in the background? Think of the opening scene of prehistoric apes in the science fiction movie 2001: A Space Odyssey, or the aria played for prisoners in The Shawshank Redemption, or the ever-popular sorcerer’s apprentice scene in the Disney animated film Fantasia. These are just a few examples of the movie scenes we will watch where a classical music piece becomes the memorable “Oh yeah!” moment in the movie. Classical music has had an enormous effect on movies, enhancing great scenes, whether melancholy, romantic, or exciting, and bringing us unique lyrical pieces from the world’s greatest composers. This class promises to be a fun experience for both music lovers and movie buffs, full of colorful visuals, beautiful music, pop quizzes, and the ever popular call-outs. Bring your best movie and musical knowledge and try to stump the “experts,” or even become one of those experts.

Toby Teorey is a former chair of the Elderwise Council. He is retired from the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan, and in retirement pursues his enduring interest in classical music and contemporary film.


S1838 Alzheimer’s in 2018:
Latest Advances in Diagnosis, Care, and Prevention
Presenter: Bruno Giordani
Date: Thursday, May 10
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

Alzheimer’s disease was first described by the German neuropathologist Alois Alzheimer in 1906. Today, it is regarded as the most common form of dementia. In this class Dr. Bruno Giordani will provide background information on Alzheimer’s disease and explain what is going on in the brain when someone has this form of dementia. We will learn about the latest findings from this year’s Alzheimer’s Association International Conference and several other recent conferences where new information is being presented, including information on risk factors, early detection, innovative prevention and treatment approaches, and new initiatives to support research.

Bruno Giordani is a professor in the Departments of Psychiatry, Neurology, and Psychology, and in the School of Nursing at the University of Michigan. Dr. Giordani currently serves as Associate Director of the Michigan Alzheimer’s Disease Center. His research interests include identification of early signs of cognitive impairment and cross-cultural applications of new assessment and intervention models.


S1839 Michigan’s Marvelous Warblers and Owls
Presenter: Don Chalfant
Date: Friday, May 18
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

Feast your eyes and fill your ears with the sights and sounds of two of Michigan’s most exciting groups of birds – the warblers and the owls. The warblers, among the most colorful of birds, list 35 different species, and can be seen widely throughout the state each year. The owls, while more mysterious and intriguing than colorful, are also a joy to see and hear. In this presentation Don Chalfant will share amazing photography and recordings of Michigan’s warblers and owls – captivating images, displays of color, thrilling songs, and eerie nighttime calls. Don also has a surprise for all of you who attend this very special classroom “outing.”

Don Chalfant received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Michigan. He retired from the Ann Arbor Schools in 1995, where he taught elementary students for many years. In retirement, Don indulges his passion for the outdoors, and especially for birding. He has recently added nature photography to his list of enthusiastic pursuits.


S1840 The Revolution in Aerial Warfare, 1965 to the Present
Presenter: Lon Nordeen
Date Friday, May 18
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

In this class we will review the revolution in aerial warfare that has taken place since the time of the Vietnam War (circa 1965) to the present. Lon Nordeen will focus on developments spanning the United States’ engagements in Southeast Asia, Iraq, Afghanistan, and other critical areas of the Middle East. We will talk about the War on Terror, including the use of fighter aircraft and missiles, and the more recent history and deployment of unmanned drones. We will also discuss tactical developments, strategic surveillance, and related political issues.

Lon Nordeen spent more than 35 years in the aerospace industry. He is the author of a dozen books on aerial warfare and military systems, and more than 150 articles and technical presentations. Lon has appeared on the Discovery Channel, History Channel and Smithsonian Channel, presenting his expertise on aerial warfare.


S1841 Imperial St. Petersburg: Jewel of the Baltics
Presenter: Gerlinda Melchiori
Date: Monday, May 21
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

One hundred years ago the Russian revolution rocked St. Petersburg and brought an end to Imperial Russia. Founded by Tsar Peter the Great in 1703, with the intention of aligning Russia with the advances of the Western world, the city lost its importance with the assassination of the imperial Romanov family in 1917. Despite its political demise after 1917, St. Petersburg has remained a significant cultural hub in Russia, and a repository of both fine and performing arts, as well as a destination for foreign tourists and Russian citizens alike. Join us for this presentation and learn about the spectacular architecture, castles, fine art, music, and European Enlightenment ideas that represent the history and wonders of St. Petersburg. We will also visit a major repository of these wonders, St. Petersburg’s impressive State Hermitage Museum of art and culture, the largest such museum in the world.

Gerlinda Melchiori holds advanced degrees in history and business, and a doctorate in higher education management from the University of Michigan. She has served as an international consultant to universities around the world.


S1842 Teaching and Learning in Early America
Presenter: Sue Grossman
Date: Thursday, May 24
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

In the early years of our country, public school teachers were typically anything but well educated. They were hired because they were literate, and because they could write a legible hand. With few exceptions, our early teachers were men. Only later did the notions emerge that teachers should be knowledgeable, and that both men and women could and should be trained to teach. Similarly with students, only some children were formally educated. Many were not. In this presentation, Sue Grossman examines American teacher preparation from the 17th century to the present, including training requirements, and the rise and demise of teacher training schools. She will also discuss how students learned in the earliest centuries, and the various ways they acquired skills and knowledge, both in and out of school.

Sue Grossman is Professor Emerita of Teacher Education at Eastern Michigan University (EMU). She holds degrees in child development, counseling, and early childhood education from Western Michigan University and Michigan State University. She joined the EMU faculty in 1995, and retired in 2012.


S1843 The Love, Lure, and Lore of the Clothesline
Presenter: Anne Lawrence
Date: Thursday, May 24
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

This unique presentation and display of clothesline nostalgia will help to revive memories of the days when folks always hung their laundry to dry outdoors – when they went “online” without the Internet. In this class Anne will touch on a bit of washday history, and on the sociological issues of ethnic stereotypes in the laundry industry, on feminism, and the clothesline’s demise with the emergence of automatic dryers. You will hear laundry poetry, and personal stories. You will learn why “solar drying” is especially relevant in today’s eco-conscious world. And, you will have an opportunity to consider and appreciate clotheslines in ways you never have before. Anne promises not to put you “through the wringer,” nor leave you “hanging” in suspense as she “pins things down” for you.

Clothesline historian and hobbyist, Anne Lawrence, is a native Bostonian, and an alumna of Tufts University where she studied psychology and education. Since retiring and relocating to Ann Arbor, Anne has been happily sharing her clothesline hobby with a wide variety of audiences in the area.


S1844 Understanding the Science (and Art) of Public Opinion Polling
Presenter: Jeffrey Bernstein
Date: Wednesday, May 30
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

It seems that hardly a day goes by when we are not inundated with public opinion polling, some of it good, some not. In this class we will focus on the methodology of public opinion polling, which will help us to understand the hidden choices pollsters make when conducting, and interpreting, public opinion polls. We will use actual survey examples to demonstrate how the way questions are written influences the results that we get. We will also spend considerable time examining the failures (and successes) of polling in the 2016 presidential election, and in other recent elections. Join us and become the rare individual in your social network who is able to explain the nature of public opinion polls!

Jeffrey Bernstein studies and teaches political science and American politics at Eastern Michigan University. His research interests include public opinion and political behavior, citizen education, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. Jeff is contributing author and co-editor of Citizenship Across the Curriculum (Indiana University Press, 2010) and is currently finishing up a book on the presidential nomination process.


S1845 The Culture of Clothing: A History
Presenter: Melanie Schuessler Bond
Date: Monday, June 4
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

Have you ever wondered why people in times past wore certain styles of clothing? Fashion has never been a frivolous pursuit. It is instead, even today, a deep-rooted cultural practice that provides insight into the ways that human society operates. For example, corsets and codpieces tell us about gender roles in particular time periods and places. Clothing has also usually marked wealth and power, as well as religion and rituals. Just as a suit and tie carry a different message for us than jeans and a t-shirt, historic fashions that may look silly to us now, once conveyed detailed information for those who observed them in their original context. Join us for an exploration of the history of clothing and how it can be used to decode the past.

Melanie Schuessler Bond is the faculty Costume Designer at Eastern Michigan University. In addition to numerous university theater designs, her professional costume design credits include productions at the Michigan Shakespeare Festival, the Williamston Theater in Williamston, Michigan, and Tipping Point Theatre in Northville.


S1846 Diet and Cardiac Health
Presenter: Cecilia Sauter
Date: Thursday, June 7
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

Have you or a loved one been told that they or you have heart disease? Have you been told to eat low fat foods, but they simply do not taste good? There are abundant resources available providing you with information about what to eat. But, very often, that information may be confusing or may even contradict the information you received from your health care provider. If you are interested in learning what a ‘cardiac diet’ is, what to eat, and how to make it appealing, this is the class for you. We will also discuss the challenges of choosing what to eat when dining out. Come to this class and learn about the myths and facts of cardiac health, and walk away with some great ideas about how to choose healthier foods.

Cecilia Sauter holds an M.S. degree from Texas Woman’s University and is a Registered Dietitian and a Certified Diabetes Educator. She currently works at the University of Michigan, training clinical staff in how to help people who have chronic conditions.


 S1847 The Search for Pablo Escobar and Other Investigations during the 1990s South American Drug Wars
Presenter: Ken Magee
Date: Thursday, June 7
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

Over a quarter of a century ago, the world became intrigued by the exploits and criminal empire of Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar. Escobar's story recently has been revived and brought into the public spotlight by the release of the Netflix docudrama series, Narcos. Our presenter, Ann Arbor native Ken Magee, was a member of the international DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) Task Force that searched for and took down Escobar in 1993. Join us as Ken discusses the details of the Escobar story, and the broader narrative of undercover operations, searching for international fugitives, investigating major smuggling organizations, and destroying cocaine laboratories in South American jungles. He will also tell us about capturing a top-ten FBI fugitive, working in a diplomatic setting at the American Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, and his views on today’s drug epidemic in the United States.

Ken Magee is a highly decorated career law enforcement veteran. He has held numerous duty posts and assignments throughout his career, including Bogota, Colombia (1989 to 1995), and one during the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia, where he was involved in the investigation of the terrorist bombing at Centennial Olympic Park. After retiring from the DEA, Ken has returned to Ann Arbor.


S1848 Voices from the Past: Michigan’s Copper Country
Presenter: Robert Rann
Date: Monday, June 11
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

Sixteen years ago, Robert Rann began recording the biographies of elderly residents of Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula, also known as Copper Country. Bob’s effort was dedicated to capturing the remembrances of a disappearing way of life. Most of the individuals he interviewed had lived through the Great Depression, World War II, and the subsequent collapse of the Keweenaw mining industry. Most were the sons of immigrants, and all embodied the grace, dignity, and courage of an earlier era of America’s history. Bob will read from these biographies, and will tell us how, from these oral histories, he came to write his “little books.”

Robert Rann received his Ph.D. in Japanese language, literature, and musicology from the University of Michigan. He is a professor of humanities at Madonna University. His wide-ranging interests include the history and culture of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Bob is co-author of the catalog of the A.E. Seaman Mineral Museum at Michigan Technological University in Houghton, Michigan, and the author/editor of his forthcoming Recollections: Life in the Keweenaw, the Copper Country oral histories.


S1849 Appalachian Music 101
Presenter: Jeremy Baldwin
Date: Monday, June 18
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

The music of the Appalachian region is a mixture of European and African styles, brewed in the mountains of the eastern United States to produce a distinctly American art form. In this class Jeremy Baldwin will introduce us to the history of Appalachian music and to its central figures, including Dock Boggs, Ola Belle Reed, and especially the Carter Family. Beginning in the 1920s, variations of Appalachian music found a larger audience via innovations in recording technology, and this continually evolving technology opened the way for Appalachian music to spread around the world and influence future generations. Jeremy will also lead us through an exploration of that influence on the music of artists such as Bob Dylan, Jerry Garcia, Loretta Lynn, and Dolly Parton.

Jeremy Baldwin has been the host of The Roots Music Project on WEMU 89.1 since 2005. He is the founder of K & J Worldwide, a company specializing in custom academic-based travel.


S1850 Passenger Trains of North America - Then and Now
Presenter: Bill McKnight
Date: Monday, June 18
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

As railroads spread over much of the United States landscape in the late 1800s, passenger trains began to assume their role as the intercity travel medium of choice. By the early 1900s, rail lines reached nearly every town in the developed parts of the U.S. and Canada. Passenger service peaked in the 1920s, had a last surge during World War II, then declined as automobile and air travel took over. Today, Amtrak, VIA Rail Canada, and various commuter lines remain as a vestige of what once flourished. Join us in this class where our presenter, Bill McKnight, will discuss passenger trains and rail services during many eras in North America from the 1800s to today. Bill will also share some of his collection of photos, maps, and timetable images.

Bill McKnight worked on both the shipping side of freight movement while at Ford Motor Co., and on the carrier side of the business at Grand Trunk Western Railroad. He belongs to state and national history groups, and has presented classes on various railroad history subjects at their meetings, as well as at Elderwise.


S1851 Our Fractured News Industry: Who Can You Trust?
Presenter: Tim Kiska
Date: Thursday, June 21
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

Tim Kiska started working for The Detroit Free Press in 1970 at age 18. It was, in retrospect, an era of great newspapers, supplemented by a handful of respected broadcast journalists. Over the years he has witnessed the steady decay of the newspaper business and the rise of a confusing array of alternative news outlets provided by the Internet and by cable television. The news cycle has speeded up, and the ways in which news is collected, verified, and distributed have radically changed. Blogs, social media, and cell phone cameras allow anyone to be a reporter and commentator. Many websites tolerate highly slanted stories and a lack of critical thinking. We hear of “fake news” as well as “bots” and “trolls” whose aims are to spread misinformation. In this presentation, we will take a closer look at where our news comes from and how we can remain informed citizens in this charged environment.

Tim Kiska has a Ph.D. from Wayne State University and is the author of multiple books, including From Soupy to Nuts! A History of Detroit Television (2005). He is a former writer for the Detroit Free Press and The Detroit News, a political consultant to WXYZ Detroit, and an associate professor of journalism and communication at the University of Michigan-Dearborn.


S1852 Five Female Artists We Should Know
Presenter: Boyd E. Chapin, Jr.
Date: Friday, June 22
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

In this class we will explore the works of Amrita Sher-Gil (1913–1941), Fede Galizia (ca. 1574–1630), Uemura Shōen (1875–1949), Henriette Browne (1829–1901), and Elizabeth Catlett (1915–2012). Each is an artist whose skilled work deserves greater attention than it has previously received. Boyd Chapin will present their art within the historical and cultural context of their individual, and highly diverse, backgrounds. He will also discuss them in reference to an influential essay by Linda Nochlin titled “Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?”

Boyd E. Chapin is a graduate of Wayne State University and a senior attorney with the Detroit firm of Garan Lucow Miller, PC. Boyd is a former docent with the Detroit Institute of Arts and has an ongoing passion for all forms of art which he pursues through his own work in pencil, oil, and acrylic.


S1853 Chinese Writing: Origins and Secrets of Longevity
Presenters: SuiWah Chan and Michael Fahy
Date: Tuesday, June 26
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

The most remarkable human invention is that of a writing system. It is one of the three leading markers of civilization (urban development, elite social stratification, symbolic communication). Of the four ancient civilizations that have been most and best studied, the one found in China is the only one that has maintained its earliest writing system for the last 3,500 years, without a break in continuity. Today, Chinese writing is practiced by the greatest number of people worldwide. It has even adapted to the latest breathtaking digital disruptions. What are the secrets of this remarkable writing system? In this presentation we will explore some of the plausible clues that might reveal how it came about, how it works, what it has achieved, and why it has lasted so long.

SuiWah Chan is Professor Emeritus of Medical Education at Michigan State University, and an associate of the Lieberthal - Rogel Center for Chinese Studies at the University of Michigan. He is a student of the earliest Chinese oracle scripts.

Michael Fahy holds a Ph.D. degree in anthropology from the University of Michigan and is an anthropologist of the Middle East. He currently teaches in the University’s School of Education.


S1854 Elderwise Round Table Coffee Hour
Theme: Extraordinary People We Have Known
Facilitator: Elderwise Host
Date: Friday, June 29
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

Our popular Round Table Coffee Hour continues at the end of the Spring 2018 semester with an
entirely new theme. This theme will focus on our individual memories of unusual, exciting, or fascinating people we have met and/or known over our many years, including family, friends, and neighbors, as well as celebrities and dignitaries. We can share important context (where we were living, what we were doing, and when), the most memorable characters we encountered, how they were extraordinary, and why they made such a lasting impression on us.

The Round Table will be facilitated by an Elderwise Member Host. We warmly welcome all Elderwise members, nonmember friends, and guests to our end-of-semester Round Table Coffee Hour. This collegial gathering is free of charge, but we do ask you to register in advance on the Registration Form provided in this catalog.




S1855 April Wildflowers at the Taylor Homestead
Presenter: Sylvia Taylor
Date: Friday, April 27, at the Taylor Homestead, Willis, Michigan.
Time: 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Tour Size: Enrollment for this class is limited to 15 attendees.

For this walk, we will revisit Tom and Sylvia Taylor’s lake-plain forest woodlot in southeastern Washtenaw County. Several of those who toured it in May of 2017 expressed an interest in returning in 2018 to view earlier blooming species. The last week of April usually provides peak flowerings of Toothwort, Dutchman’s Breeches, Hepatica, Trout Lily, Twinleaf, Spring Beauty, Bloodroot and other photographic favorites. Sylvia will explain the ongoing phenology (first day of bloom) records she keeps for the site and will discuss ways to manage woodlot understories for maximum diversity and spring floral displays. This will be a slow-paced, easy walk along forest paths. Enrollees will receive driving directions to the location.

Sylvia Taylor is an adjunct assistant professor in the School for Environment and Sustainability at the University of Michigan. She is retired from the State of Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources, where she served for many years as an endangered species coordinator and wildlife biologist. Sylvia is currently engaged in multiple projects involving field botany, wildlife biology, forest ecology, and the monitoring of vegetation.


S1856 Red Circle: Designing Japan in Contemporary Posters
Exhibit Tour, University of Michigan Museum of Art (UMMA)
Presenter: UMMA Docent Specialist
Date: Thursday, May 3 at the Museum of Art, 525 South State Street, Ann Arbor
Time: 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. [Please note the 2:00 p.m. end time.]
Tour size: Enrollment for this exhibition tour is limited to 20 attendees.

In the 1980s, Japan’s strong trade surplus and currency were causing friction and antagonism overseas. In response, three renowned Japanese artists – Ikko Tanaka, Shigeo Fukuda, and Kazumasa Nagai – took on the challenge of changing Japan’s global image through graphic design. In posters promoting trade fairs, cultural festivals, exhibitions, and sporting events, these artists used a powerful language of simple forms, vivid color, and a touch of humor to foster, both nationally and internationally, a deeper understanding of the different faces of Japan and its long cultural history. Their eye-catching designs often incorporated familiar traditional symbols and motifs, notably the iconic red circle against a white background of Japan’s national flag. From folklore, archetypal animals, human figures, and landscapes were also distilled into forms of iconographic clarity. These dazzling posters are a fascinating chapter in the history of Japan’s ongoing efforts to shape its identity in the post-World War II era. The Red Circle exhibition is on display January 6 – May 6 at the University of Michigan Museum of Art. Our tour will be led by a museum Docent Specialist.


S1857 Menlo Innovations: A Joyful Workplace Culture A Company Tour
Presenter: Richard Sheridan, CEO
Date: Monday, May 21 at Menlo Innovations, 505 E. Liberty, Ann Arbor
Time: 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. [Please note the 11:30 a.m. end time.]
Class Size: Enrollment for this company tour is limited to 25 attendees.

Menlo Innovations is a software design and development company in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Last year over 2,000 people came from around the world to visit them. These visitors made that journey not to learn about technology, but to witness a radically different approach to workplace culture — one intentionally designed to produce joy. Menlo has developed an employee culture that removes the fear and ambiguity that traditionally make a workplace miserable. With joy as the explicit goal, Menlo leaders have changed everything about how a company is run, and have brought that joy into the lives of their employees and their clients. This tour will offer participants an inside look at the Menlo belief system and how it influences physical environment, embraces making mistakes, and eliminates stereotypical meetings, all while fostering dignity and respect.

Richard Sheridan is the founder and CEO of Menlo Innovations. He is the author of Joy, Inc. a new book that describes the joyful culture and advantages of a company that motivates by providing employees with an environment in which to do their best work.


S1858 Cosmogonic Tattoos: Ancient Artifacts as Contemporary Art
A Window Installation and Exhibition by Jim Cogswell
Presenters: Kelsey Museum of Archaeology Professional Staff
Date: Thursday, May 31 at the Kelsey Museum, Ann Arbor
Note: The museum’s public and accessible entrance is on Maynard Street.
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon
Tour Size: Enrollment for this tour is limited to 15 attendees.

On the University of Michigan campus you may have noticed the colorful window installations at the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology and the Museum of Art. With imagery that is both familiar and otherworldly, these works, vivid, enchanting, and almost playful, seem like they could have come from the pages of a children's picture book. They are, in fact, part of the current Cosmogonic Tattoos installations and exhibit. Our guided tour will be at the Kelsey Museum, but attendees are welcome to independently visit the installations at the Museum of Art a few blocks away. Created by artist and professor of art Jim Cogswell, the project uses vinyl images applied in saturated colors to respond to the objects held in the museum collections. Jim Cogswell’s contemporary tattoos are inspired by ancient cosmogonies – our graphic explanations of how the world came to be and our assumptions about the fundamental nature of the universe. The installations allow us to examine objects separated from us by deep chronological and cultural divides, and celebrate the power of architecture, ornament, and material objects to shape knowledge, historical memory, and cultural identity. The Kelsey exhibit includes the selected artifacts and Jim Cogswell’s original paintings, helping us to bring the objects and the artwork together in a deeper understanding of their meaning.

Kelsey Museum Professional Staff will guide our tour of this exhibition, which is on display at the museum through June 2, 2018.


S1859 Sculpture Tour of the University of Michigan Central Campus
Presenter: Ina Sandalow
Date: Monday, June 11, starting at the Museum of Art, 525 South State Street
Time: 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
[Please note the 11:00 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. start and end times.]
Tour Size: Enrollment in this tour is limited to 20 attendees.

The University of Michigan’s Central Campus has many wonderful sculptures. This walking tour will expose visitors to world-class examples of contemporary monumental outdoor sculpture by some of the most significant artists of our time. We will begin at Mark di Suvero’s large black sculpture, Shang, in front of the Frankel Family Wing of the University of Michigan Museum of Art. We will end with Leonard Baskin's Holocaust Memorial at the Rackham Graduate School Building at the intersection of East Washington and Fletcher Streets. Tour participants must be able to walk approximately half a mile.

Ina Sandalow previously taught history and law at Ann Arbor Pioneer High School. She has been a docent with the University of Michigan Museum of Art for over 20 years. The University sculpture tours on both the North and Central Campuses are some of her favorite projects.


S1860 A Visit to The Creature Conservancy
Presenters: Creature Conservancy Staff
Date: Thursday, June 14
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon at the Creature Conservancy
4950 Ann Arbor-Saline Road, south of Ann Arbor
Fee: Members $14; Nonmembers $21 (Fee includes an additional $6 for the program.)
Tour Size: Enrollment for this tour is limited to 30 attendees.

Have you ever arrived at work to find an alligator on the doorstep? Well, it happens! In 2005 it was the beginning of what has become The Creature Conservancy. Al the Alligator was soon joined by a sloth rescued from a trailer park, an abandoned macaw, pythons discovered in a dumpster, and iguanas found wandering loose on the University of Michigan campus. The Creature Conservancy gives these animals homes, and important teaching jobs. Since 2005, the facility’s residents have expanded to include injured, non-releasable wildlife, and a few animals specifically selected to achieve educational goals. Join this tour and experience a remarkable community resource where you will have the opportunity to meet, learn about, and get close to several Conservancy residents.

Our program will be led by Specialist Handlers, with ample time for Q&A and, when safe, hands-on interaction with some of the animals. You will also be able to explore the Conservancy grounds and see many other resident creatures. By creating personal connections with animals, Conservancy staff hope that a greater understanding of and empathy for wildlife will help people make more informed decisions on issues that impact the world in which we live.


S1861 All-Day Bus Tour: Detroit Historical Museum and Hitsville USA (Motown Historical Museum)
Guides: Docent Specialists and Professional Staff at the Museums
Date: Friday, June 15, at the historical museums in Detroit
Times: 8:30 a.m. Departure
5:30 p.m. Return
Fee: Members $80; Nonmembers $90
Fees include lunch at the Traffic Jam & Snug restaurant.
Tour Size: Enrollment for this tour is limited to 48 attendees.
Two spaces on the coach are reserved for wheelchairs.
Please note: There is a fair amount of walking and some steps involved on this tour.

Detroit Historical Museum. The Detroit Historical Museum, long dedicated to telling the story of our region’s fascinating history, recently reopened and now boasts five exciting new exhibits showcasing Detroit’s rich legacy of music, technological innovation, and culture. Exciting additions have also been added to existing signature exhibits such as the beloved “Streets of Old Detroit” and “Motor City.” Join us as we reminisce and marvel over Detroit’s unique and remarkable past.

Lunch at the Traffic Jam & Snug Restaurant, known for its in-house bakery, microbrewery, and dairy. Registrants with dietary restrictions should let our office know in advance what kind of meal they require.

Hitsville USA (Motown Historical Museum). Founded in 1985, this is one of Detroit’s most popular tourist destinations. The museum’s exhibits trace the roots of Motown’s special story and chronicle its impact on 20th century popular culture and musical styles. The story begins with Berry Gordy, Jr. and a small house in Detroit that he christened “Hitsville USA” (now home to the Motown Historical Museum). The story continues as Motown evolves into a major entertainment enterprise that became one of the most diverse and influential in the world.



THEATER Back to top
S1862 Eastern Michigan University (EMU) Theater: Detroit ‘67
A Play by Dominique Morisseau (2013)
Presenter: Wallace Bridges
                         Pre-Performance Class: Friday, April 13, 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon
                         at the Red Cross Building
                         Matinee Performance:  Sunday, April 15, 2:00 p.m. at Quirk Theater
 Fees:  Members $17; Nonmembers $24  [Fee includes one ticket to the play.]
Emeritus Faculty: Members $8; Nonmembers $15 [Fee includes two tickets to the play.]
Extra Tickets are $9 each. Please see S1864 on this catalog’s Registration Form.

Dominique Morisseau’s Detroit ’67 explores an explosive and decisive moment in the history of a great American city, a moment that is set to a vibrant soundtrack of the music of that time. The play’s characters struggle throughout with racial tension and economic instability. Chelle and her brother Lank are trying to make ends meet but end up clashing over much more than the family business. As their pent-up feelings erupt, so does their city. Detroit ’67 won the 2014 Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama Inspired by History.

Wallace Bridges is a professor of theater arts and has been teaching theater at Eastern Michigan University (EMU) since 1992. He has directed over 20 plays at EMU, and has co-written and co-directed, with television and film actor Ben Vereen, an original play with music: Soaring on Black Wings. Wallace is the founder of Idlewild Theatre Company, which produces and promotes Afrocentric theater, and is the proud recipient of a 2016 Fulbright Fellowship supporting his work in African American theatre at the University of Ghana-Accra.


S1863 PTD Productions: The Crucible A Tragedy by Arthur Miller (1953)
Presenter: Liz Greaves-Hoxsie
                         Pre-Performance Class: Friday, May 11, 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon
                         (Riverside Arts Center, Ypsilanti)
                         Matinee Performance:  Sunday, May 13, 2:00 p.m.  (Riverside Arts Center)
 Fees:  Members $19; Nonmembers $26  [Fee includes one ticket to the play.]

Extra Tickets are $11 each. Please see S1865 on this catalog’s Registration Form.

In 17th century Salem, Massachusetts, several young girls are caught in what appears to be the act of conjuring spirits. To avoid punishment, they accuse others of practicing witchcraft. Without knowing who is and who is not a witch, and with no evidence that anyone is actually practicing witchcraft, the residents of Salem are gripped by fear and demand the accused be put on trial. The resulting witch hunts and executions reveal the tragic consequences of public hysteria and judgments driven by fear. Based on the historical Salem witch trials of 1692, and written by Arthur Miller at the height of the Cold War “Red Scare,” The Crucible is often described as an allegory for McCarthyism in 1950s America.

Liz Greaves-Hoxsie has developed a second career in theater. She has taken theater classes at Washtenaw Community College, Purple Rose Theatre, and Redbud Productions, and has been associated with PTD Productions since 2010. Liz last appeared with PTD as Lady Angkatell in Agatha Christie's The Hollow, one of Liz’s all-time favorite roles.

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