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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

4 sessions

+3350 pts
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Jürgen Habermas: The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere

Embark on an exploration of the public sphere with Jürgen Habermas. Analyze the evolution of this crucial space for democratic discourse and its challenges in today's fragmented society. Delve into Habermas's seminal work to uncover insights on renewing and revitalizing public dialogue in the 21st century.

  • All levels
  • 21 and older
  • $335
  • Earn 10% Rewards
  • Price Lock
  • Online Classroom
  • 12 hours over 4 sessions

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  • $335/person
  • 12 hours over 4 sessions
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Class Description


What you'll learn in this literature class:

Is a public sphere possible? Our social and political life is marked by deep divisions: The social fabric is fraying. Economic and political polarization are on the rise. Many citizens feel their voices are not heard in arenas from the government to the marketplace. Yet many of our public institutions depend on a space in which we come together as equals to consider questions concerning the common good. The internet and smartphones seem to give us faster and ever more convenient access to communication. But can this constitute a meaningful public sphere?

In this course, we will pursue these questions through a close reading of seminal German philosopher and social theorist Jürgen Habermas. Habermas is one of the most widely respected contemporary theorists of society and democracy in both the United States and Europe. In his classic book, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, Habermas marshals the resources of philosophy, political theory, history, sociology, and economics to provide a unified account of the complex evolution of the public sphere. Students will consider: What is the public sphere? How did it emerge? Why did it emerge when and where it did? What were its limitations? And what keeps it from flourishing today? We will also discuss what it might mean to renew the public sphere in a world where the public and private are no longer strictly separated, where the market rules, where we experience politics only through public relations, and where the news media chases ratings. Reading Habermas in our own contemporary contexts, we will explore the possibility of a politics free of domination and founded on our common humanity and ask how this ideal remains relevant in 21st century society.

Remote Learning

This course is available for "remote" learning and will be available to anyone with access to an internet device with a microphone (this includes most models of computers, tablets). Classes will take place with a "Live" instructor at the date/times listed below.

Upon registration, the instructor will send along additional information about how to log-on and participate in the class.

Refund Policy

  • Upon request, we will refund less 5% cancellation fee of a course up until 6 business days before its start date.
  • Students who withdraw after that point but before the first class are entitled to 75% refund or full course credit.
  • After the first class: 50% refund or 75% course credit.
  • No refunds or credits will be given after the second class.

In any event where a customer wants to cancel their enrollment and is eligible for a full refund, a 5% processing fee will be deducted from the refund amount.

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Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

The Brooklyn Institute for Social Research was established in 2011 in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn. Its mission is to extend liberal arts education and research far beyond the borders of the traditional university, supporting community education needs and opening up new possibilities for scholarship in the...

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Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

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