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Brooklyn Institute for Social Research
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(4.6-star rating across 29 reviews)

The Brooklyn Institute for Social Research, established in 2011, offers liberal arts education and research opportunities to local communities while supporting young scholars. With a mission to engage various intellectual traditions, the institute aims to provide accessible education and foster active, engaged citizens.

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Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

8 classes have spots left

The Soviet Avant-Garde: Culture, Politics, Aesthetics

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Explore Russian and Soviet avant-gardes during the first three decades of the 20th century. Discover how artists grappled with finding "communistic expression of material structures" and the shifting status of the arts in the early Soviet state. Dive into the works of Kazimir Malevich, El Lissitzky, Sergei Eisenstein, and more.

(29) All levels 21 and older
$335

4 sessions

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Saidiya Hartman: Scenes of Subjection

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Delve into the transformative insights of Saidiya Hartman's groundbreaking works on Black life and history. Join us at the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research as we explore Hartman's profound reimagining of freedom, agency, and the legacy of the Atlantic slave trade. Engage with critical questions on power, labor, and race in the postmodern era through an examination of Hartman's influential texts alongside other prominent scholars in the field.

(29) All levels 21 and older
$335

4 sessions

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Herman Melville’s The Confidence-Man

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Embark on a riveting exploration of trust, deceit, and existential uncertainty in Herman Melville’s masterpiece. Join us at the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research as we dissect The Confidence-Man, delving into its satire of capitalist modernity and probing questions of faith, knowledge, and societal norms. Unravel the complexities of Melville’s characters and their morally ambiguous world through close readings and insightful discussions led by expert scholars.

(29) All levels 21 and older
$335

4 sessions

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Racial Capitalism: Race, Class, and the Black Radical Tradition

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Delve into the profound intersections of race, class, and capitalism in a thought-provoking exploration of contemporary radical movements. Join us for an in-depth examination of Cedric Robinson’s concept of racial capitalism and its implications for understanding modernity, nationalism, and Black Radicalism. Uncover the complexities of these interwoven systems through close readings and discussions led by expert scholars at the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research.

(29) All levels 21 and older
$335

4 sessions

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Mesopotamia: Civilization, Archaeology, and Material Culture

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Embark on a captivating exploration of Mesopotamian civilization through archaeology and material culture. Join us at the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research as we delve into the origins, structures, and legacy of this ancient society, unraveling its significance amidst historical interpretations and contemporary geopolitical contexts. Uncover the complexities of Mesopotamia's urbanization, social structures, and technological advancements, and discover how its material remains offer insights into our understanding of the past and present.

(29) All levels 21 and older
$335

4 sessions

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The Politics of Pregnancy: Gestation, Abortion, and Labor

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Delve into the complex terrain of pregnancy politics, exploring gestational labor, abortion rights, and reproductive justice. Join us at the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research for a deep dive into theoretical frameworks, historical perspectives, and contemporary debates surrounding the manufacture of human fetuses. Challenge conventional notions and scrutinize the intersections of gender, sexuality, and capitalist political economy in shaping reproductive realities.

(29) All levels 21 and older
$335

4 sessions

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Theorizing Repression: From Psychoanalysis to Counterinsurgency Theory

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Uncover the entwined history of psychoanalysis and state power in a captivating exploration of repression tactics. Join us at the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research as we delve into the intersections of Freudian theory with military strategy, urban policing, and guerrilla warfare. Through an array of diverse readings, we'll analyze how psychoanalytic concepts have been utilized to pathologize dissent and justify both state and revolutionary violence, raising critical questions about power, resistance, and the psyche.

(29) All levels 21 and older
$335

4 sessions

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What is Economic Democracy?

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Explore the contours of economic democracy in this thought-provoking course. Delve into its implications, challenges, and potential alternatives to capitalism. From theoretical discussions to real-world examples, uncover the complexities of democratizing production and consumption in today's global economy.

(29) All levels 21 and older
$335

4 sessions

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Infinity: History, Mathematics, Philosophy

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ 247 West 37th St, New York, NY

How can we, as finite beings, grasp the concept of infinity? Yet humans have been contemplating infinity for millennia, whether inspired by nature, philosophy, spirituality—or mathematics. This course is a historical and conceptual approach to the latter realm, the mathematics of infinity. Our topics will include the ancient Greeks’ discovery of irrational numbers and Zeno’s paradoxes; Aristotle’s distinction between “actual infinity”...

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

4 sessions

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An Introduction to Schopenhauer

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

The Worst of All Possible Worlds: an Introduction to Schopenhauer Arthur Schopenhauer is a true oddity in the history of philosophy. Although a great metaphysical systematizer in the tradition of Leibniz and Hegel, Schopenhauer posed a worldview entirely antithetical to the “optimism” characteristic of traditional Western philosophizing. Whereas for Leibniz ours is “the best of all possible worlds,” Schopenhauer insisted that we are “not...

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

4 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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Mining: Industry, Ecology, and Capitalism

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

Delve into the explosive history of mining, from labor conflicts to environmental devastation, in this interdisciplinary course that examines mining's cultural status and political uses. Explore its ties to capitalism, colonialism, and imperialism, and uncover its role in shaping modern urban life.

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

4 sessions

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Reading the Iliad

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ Online Classroom

The Iliad stands at the start of most histories of western literature, even as it remains enduringly strange—often, it seems, at odds with the very tradition it has been taken to inaugurate.  In our course, we will attempt to recapture some of the strangeness and some of the continuing relevance of the Iliad. We will closely read and discuss the entirety of the poem, with especial attention to the following themes: the...

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

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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What is Financialization?

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ 275 Madison Ave, New York, NY

Financialization is a term that is used ubiquitously to tell a specific story about the way the economy has developed over the past 35 years. In that time, it has come to refer to a number of separate (though mutually compatible) trends: the decline of the manufacturing sector and the growing importance of financial activities as a share of corporate profit, even for non-financial firms; the growth of the financial sector relative to the rest of...

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

4 sessions

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Michel Foucault: Truth and Power

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ 119 N 11th St, Brooklyn, NY

The French philosopher Michel Foucault claimed that “truth isn’t outside power,” the “reward of free spirits,” nor, as Immanuel Kant imagined two centuries earlier, “the privilege of those who have succeeded in liberating themselves.” Rather, truth is produced by power—a generalized condition outside of which no one stands—and shaped by different “knowledge regimes” in which societies accept certain things to be true. Instead...

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

4 sessions

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Capitalism and Desire

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

Why do we want what we want? The critique of capitalism is very often associated – by both proponents and antagonists – with a critique of consumerism which, in turn, is treated as a pathology of individual desire. People should stop shopping; people should eschew goods; people should want less; people should police their own desires (or, if they fail, have them policed by others.) The problem, in a word, is desire. But there is a long tradition...

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

4 sessions

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Heidegger: Truth, Technology, and Poetry

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research @ 30 Irving Pl, New York, NY

Sometime in the early 1930’s, Heidegger’s thought is supposed to have undergone a change. His philosophical project shifted from the “fundamental ontology” of his early work Being and Time—foundational to the development of wartime and post-war “existentialism”—to what he would come to describe as Seinsgeschichte—a “history of being.” Heidegger was interested in understanding how the meaning of being, what it means...

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

4 sessions

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