The days are getting shorter, the autumn season is upon and OLLI’s Senior Seminar schedule for October and November features 10 exciting new courses to close out the fall semester. OLLI’s seminars will be offered in a variety of formats — including online courses and a return to in-person courses — and will appeal to a wide array of interests by exploring topics in film, health, history, music, political science, science and technology.
OLLI Senior Seminars are led by some of OU’s tops professors and feature fun, educational and inspiring concepts. Each course runs for four to six weeks and typically meets for two hours at a time, offering adult learners an open and welcoming learning environment with people of a similar age.
Be sure to sign up soon to save your spot before classes fill up, as many OLLI courses are known to sell out. For information about course availability, please contact OLLI directly at (405) 325-3488.
October Senior Seminars
Francophone Cultures Through Film
Julia L. Abramson
Fridays | Oct. 1-29
France is known for the invention of moving image technology and for its seminal culture of the cinema. In fact, its film traditions are intertwined with the emergence of a global French-speaking cinema. Working from a selection of essential films, we will examine key developments in the cinema tradition, but also in francophone histories and cultures, broadly understood. Films are available for viewing with English-language subtitles. Class discussion and short readings are in English.
The Dolly Parton Principle: An Approach to American Argument
Thursdays | Oct. 7-28
If there’s one thing Americans can agree on, it’s that we love Dolly Parton. Uniting the nation better than any politician could, Dolly has become an American icon who practices what “Dolly Parton’s America” calls “Dollitics” — staying away from controversy, while still being a political figure. In this seminar, we will study Dolly’s life and work to discover how she remains uncontroversial, and perhaps more importantly, what she can teach us about engaging in respectful and effective arguments. We’ll analyze Dolly’s music and career to understand her values and motivations, crafting a theory about her worldview and investigating her approach to success and persuasion in America.
Why Couldn’t the U.S Handle the Pandemic?
Elise Dunitz Brennan
Mondays | Oct. 11-Nov. 1
This course will provide a history of how health care is delivered and financed in the United States. The evolution from charitable providers and private pay to governmental/employer health insurance will be explained. Innovative models of delivery and financing and their impact on the doctor or physician extender will also be part of the focus. The interplay between the various governmental and private entities involved in the delivery of care and how these silos impact a coordinated delivery of care will be discussed.
Oklahoma Governors from 1970-2020
Mondays | Oct. 11-Nov. 1
Thursdays | Oct 14-Nov. 4
From David Hall to Kevin Stitt, there have been nine governors serving single or multiple terms in office over the last 50 years. Cal Hobson was in the Legislature during the service of seven of them, so he knew them fairly well, and five extremely well. Each one is a personal case study for Cal because politics has always been a love of his — some say an obsession. Five were Democrats, four Republicans, and he liked every one of them, but, of course, some more than others. Both his favorite and least favorite were members of the elephant organization, while the smartest and most likable came from the donkey camp. The best public speaker was a Democrat, but probably another mule was the worst. One governor often changed shirts three times a day, while a different CEO it seemed maybe only once a week. Another governor wouldn’t live in the mansion provided. One built the swimming pool there, another the large dining room designed for shakedowns, special events and confabs, both important and irrelevant. At one especially memorable evening, Oklahoma’s most powerful person wouldn’t shake hands with Cal, but his daughter gave him a nice hug.
The Franco-Italian Riviera from Famous Artists’ Point of View
Tuesdays | Oct. 12-Nov. 16
Forever, the Mediterranean shores have offered dazzling panoramas to painters and inspired a great number of English and American writers. This six-week course will guide you along the Riviera, pausing at strategic sites to give you a taste of the glamour, sometimes tainted with despair, of this magic stretch of land.
Thursdays | Oct. 21-Nov. 11
This course will build upon iOS fundamentals. Learn more in-depth how to utilize things such as shortcuts, Siri, Apply Pay, as well as adding/managing smart home technology with your iPhone/iPad. We will also cover device continuity, so you can easily access your content from multiple devices.
Fascinating Islands (Part 2): Spitsbergen, South Georgia, New Zealand and Galapagos
Fridays | Oct. 22-Nov. 12
Islands range in size from Greenland, the largest island (823,000 square miles), to small, unmapped rocky islets that barely jut out of the water. Islands can be parts of continents that have been rifted or raised up by tectonic activity (such as Greenland and Spitsbergen), can result from volcanic activity (Galapagos and Hawaii), can be built up from reefs (Bermuda and atolls), can result from glacial activity (Long Island and Martha’s Vineyard) or can be barrier islands (Cape Hatteras and Padre Island). Always critical to islands forming or disappearing is the rise or fall of sea level. Islands appear or enlarge as sea level drops, and they become smaller or even disappear as sea level rises. Following a brief discussion of the origin of islands, we will explore in depth the origin, history and culture of four fascinating islands — Spitsbergen (Svalbard) (“Land of the Midnight Sun”), South Georgia (“Land of Rock, Ice, Penguins and Shackleton”), New Zealand (“Land of the Maori and Southern Alps”) and the Galapagos Islands (“Land of Darwin and Giant Tortoises”).
Israeli Intelligence Operations
Tuesdays | Oct. 26-Nov.16
Wednesdays | Oct. 27-Nov. 17
This course will examine several significant cases in the history of Israeli intelligence since the birth of the modern state of Israel in 1948. Specifically, we will learn about four cases:
- The Mossad’s efforts to track down and capture Nazi SS officer Adolph Eichmann
- Efforts to locate the Black September perpetrators of the 1972 attack in Munich against the Israeli Olympic Team
- The raid on Entebbe Airport in Uganda to free Israeli hostages held by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine
- The Israeli nuclear weapons program and Mossad’s efforts to locate Mordechai Vanunu, who revealed details of this secret program.
We will discuss these cases to learn more about the specific events and the role intelligence played to guide the planning and execution of these daring missions.
November Senior Seminars
Gilbert and Sullivan Operettas Part I: Their Genius and Their Genesis
Mondays | Nov. 8-Dec. 13
10 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
We will listen to, watch, read, discuss and enjoy the comic operas of Gilbert and Sullivan. The videos will include subtitles whenever possible. Their operettas have become, by far, the most performed theatrical productions for almost 150 years. They introduced innovations in content and form in their operas that directly changed the development of musical theatre. They also influenced political discourse, literature, film and television.
Behind the Scenes at a Museum
Tuesdays | Nov. 9-Dec. 7
We all love going to museums, but do you know what happens behind the scenes to make it all happen? In this five-week course, you will learn about the people who work at museums, the artifacts museums collect and the processes that create the magic of exhibitions.