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Literature Classes Online

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Explore the enchanting world of classic literature from the comfort of your own home with online classes that delve deep into the works of Shakespeare, Austen, and Hemingway, allowing participants to analyze themes, dissect narratives, and gain a deeper understanding of these timeless masterpieces.

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Proust in Time: The Guermantes Way

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Explore Proust's The Guermantes Way as he delves into the complexities of aristocratic society, individual psyche, and the turbulent politics of the Dreyfus Affair. Examine themes of desire, social mobility, and the creation of art as the narrator matures alongside literary modernism. Reflect on Proust’s modernity and its enduring relevance to our own historical moment.

(29) All levels 21 and older
$335

4 sessions

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U for You: Joyce's Ulysses for New Readers (and Re-Readers)

Irish Arts Center @ Virtual Classroom

Dive into Joyce's Ulysses with renowned scholar Jonathan Goldman, unraveling its complexities and discovering its humor and humanity. Whether you're a seasoned reader or new to Joyce's work, this immersive experience promises to enhance your understanding and appreciation of this literary masterpiece.

(53) All levels 18 and older
No upcoming schedules
$456

9 sessions

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A Ruthless Criticism of Everything Existing: An Introduction to Marx

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

In the mid-nineteenth century, a young Karl Marx wrote, in the form of a published open letter to Arnold Ruge: “But if the designing of the future and the proclamation of ready-made solutions for all time is not our affair, then we realize all the more clearly what we have to accomplish in the present—I am speaking of a ruthless criticism of everything existing, ruthless in two senses: The criticism must not be afraid of its own conclusions,...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$335

4 sessions

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James Joyce: Ulysses

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

The archetypal novel of high modernism, James Joyce’s Ulysses attempts to synthesize the life of a city, the afterlives of previous literary styles, and the entirety of the Western canon as it stood in the early twentieth century. Since its original publication when it was serialized in the Little Review from March 1918 to March 1920, Ulysses has churned up debates about obscenity, obscurity, gender, sexuality, censorship,...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$315

4 sessions

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Confronting Challenging Texts

92nd Street Y

How do we live with sacred text when it contradicts with our values of egalitarianism and inclusivity? In this queer-affirming class, we will explore historical and contemporary texts that respond to exclusionary and troubling texts. No previous text study necessary, all are welcome.

(1084) All levels 18 and older
No upcoming schedules

Reclaiming our Sacred Texts

92nd Street Y @ Live Interactive Online Classroom

Reclaiming our Sacred Texts: Reading the Bible in Pride Month In this queer-affirming class, we will explore the love stories of David and Jonathan and Ruth and Naomi. No text study (or even belief in God!) required — just bring your pride and an open mind.

(1084) All levels 18 and older
No upcoming schedules
$72

4 sessions

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Wagner’s Ring Cycle: the Total Art Work

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

At age 37, Richard Wagner—composer, exile, and failed revolutionary—set to work on the project that would consume the next 25 years of his life. By its completion, it had grown into arguably the most ambitious artwork of the 19th century: the monumental cycle Der Ring des Nibelungen, a fifteen-hour operatic tetralogy of unprecedented scope and complexity, narrating the history of the world from its birth to its destruction.  The cycle was...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules

Anthropology and Ethnography: an Introduction

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ 172 Mulberry St, New York, NY

Anthropology is at once a contested and vital field of study and inquiry. Still hotly debated is a basic question: what is the scope of anthropological inquiry? Modern anthropologists no longer divide the world, as their 19th-century forebears did, into a sociological “West” and an anthropological “rest of the world,” its “backwardness” waiting to be understood. Yet, expanding the anthropological field of view to the whole of the globe...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$315

4 sessions

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Understanding Loneliness: Literature, Philosophy,Theory

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

How are we to understand loneliness today? It appears that we are facing a mass epidemic of loneliness—one perhaps exacerbated by virological pandemic of COVID-19. Britain has appointed a Minister of Loneliness to counter rising rates of isolation. Approximately 20-43 percent of American adults over the age of 60 experience “frequent or intense loneliness.” And, it is clear from medical research that loneliness has significant health impacts:...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$315

4 sessions

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Reading the Odyssey

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

Homer’s Odyssey tells the tale of a mortal who suffers and who comes to know the “cities and minds” of humans. The travels and ordeals of Odysseus, as he moves from the ruins of Troy to the new civic possibilities of Ithaca, elaborate two constitutive myths: the first is the tale of the hero’s homecoming—the nostos, or “mindful return”—in which Odysseus gives up immortality with a goddess to instead regain his home, wife, and son;...

(29) All levels 21 and older
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The Black Jacobins: Liberation, Political Theory

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

The Black Jacobins: Liberation, Political Theory, and the Haitian Revolution The Haitian Revolution marked not only the liberation of Haiti from French colonial rule, but also, in Cedric Robinson’s words, “the first slave society to achieve the permanent destruction of the slave system.” As with the Paris Commune later in the 19th century and the Bolshevik Revolution in the early 20th, the Haitian Revolution was met with particularly acute...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules

Gender and the Ancient World: Archaeology

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Gender and the Ancient World: Archaeology and Feminist Theory Archaeology aims to uncover and reconstruct the human past, but it does so from the vantage point of the present and its often unstated assumptions about human social norms, political life, and gender roles. For instance, a funerary excavation is commonly assumed to be of a male or female body based on little else but the presence of weapons or jewels—projecting Western cultural norms...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$315

4 sessions

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Sado-Masochism: Economies of Desire and Recognition

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ 75 Broad St, New York, NY

From Hegel to Deleuze, many political thinkers have employed the language of dominance and submission within the tradition of Western political thought. How does the language of Sado-masochism shape the way we think about desire and political recognition? This course will look at how the erotic language of S&M is embedded in the theoretical frameworks we use to approach questions of knowledge, pleasure, and power. Beginning with Hegel’s famous...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$315

4 sessions

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Fredric Jameson: What is Postmodernism?

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

“The postmodern,” writes Marxist literary and cultural theorist Fredric Jameson, “is the force field in which very different kinds of cultural impulses . . . must make their way.” Adapted from a New Left Review essay of the same name, Jameson’s Postmodernism, or The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism is an ambitious account of how the postmodern has replaced modernism as the “cultural dominant” of late capitalism. In conversation with...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules

Gayl Jones: Mosquito

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Though Gayl Jones is one of the most important writers of the 20th Century, with work that spans prose and poetic examinations of Black women’s lives all across the world, the publication of her 1999 novel Mosquito was met with significant ambivalence. Henry Louis Gates refers to Mosquito as Gayl Jones’ “dissertation”—an imitation of actual oral storytelling, rather than “a linear narrative with a beginning, a middle, and an end.”...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$335

4 sessions

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Becoming Cyborg: Science and Science-Fiction

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Feminist science studies scholar Donna Haraway writes: “By the late twentieth century, our time, a mythic time, we are all chimeras, theorized and fabricated hybrids of machine and organism; in short, we are all cyborgs.” Haraway goes on to argue in her canonical essay, “A Manifesto For Cyborgs,” that to be a cyborg means to live in a world without tidy origin stories or innocent wholeness. Instead, it is about partial connections, complex...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$335

4 sessions

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Ethnopornography: Race, Erotics, and Domination

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Early anthropology had a sex problem. By day it studied kinship—how legitimately procreative sex produces a society—collected intimate items, and photographed naked subjects; by night, it hung around corners, pestered and menaced its way into intimate spaces. These early anthropologists were not alone. Their settler peers developed obsessions in schoolgirls and purchased wives, in erotic genres of parlor photography, in romantic rape literature,...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$335

4 sessions

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Don Quixote: Into the World of the Book

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Miguel de Cervantes’s Don Quixote is, perhaps above all else, a book about books. The title character’s voracious consumption of books of chivalry drives him mad, leading him to interpret windmills as giants, common inns as majestic castles, and prostitutes as highborn damsels. In addition to the medieval romances that Don Quixote reads, a variety of texts in different forms populate the narrative: Arabic manuscripts, short stories...

(29) Beginner 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$335

4 sessions

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Ovid’s Metamorphoses

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Ovid begins his Metamorphoses, “My soul would speak of bodies changed into new forms,” and it is the great theme of physical transformation that unites the poem’s many myths: humans becomes animals and plants, and vice versa; humans becomes stones and constellations; and humans change their sex. No poem from antiquity has so influenced Western European literature and art. Chaucer, Shakespeare, Milton, and Dante creatively raided Ovid’s tales...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$335

4 sessions

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The Corporation: a Critical Introduction

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

The corporation is the dominant business form of contemporary capitalism, a legal fiction and social organization developed to minimize risk while maximizing surplus value extraction. Embodying a “structure of irresponsibility” through the legal construct of limited liability—which ensures corporate immunity for a dizzying swath of bad acts —corporations today cause, finance, or directly or indirectly profit from near daily human-rights...

(29) All levels 21 and older
No upcoming schedules
$335

4 sessions

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