Programs and Events | Newberry

Programs and Events

The Newberry offers programming in the humanities for scholars, teachers, and the general public. Unless otherwise noted, events are free, and no reservations are required. Many of our programs are recorded, and you can listen to them on our website.

E.g., 12/13/2017
E.g., 12/13/2017
Saturday, February 10, 2018
Led by Barbara Korbel. Six sessions, 9 am - noon.
Explore the craft of Japanese bookbinding. Radically different in methodology and materials from their European counterparts, traditional Japanese bindings focus almost exclusively on paper, thread, and paste to create a variety of structures.
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Led by Bruce Gans. Four sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
The focus of “Classics of Comedy” is, first and foremost, delight. We will read comic literary masterpieces that have stood the test of time and make the reader literally laugh out loud.
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Led by Brooke Heagerty. Eight sessions, 5:45 - 7:45 pm.
Today, the world’s societies are being transformed by an era of “perpetual war,” a new kind of war with no clear end, a limitless list of combatants and a battlefield without national boundaries. This course will explore questions of its consequences…
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Led by Stephen Kleiman. Eight sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
The Art Song strives to be the perfect combination of music and literature. An Art Song involves the collaboration of four elements: the poet, the composer, the singer, and the accompanist…
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Led by Mike Levine. Seven sessions, 6 - 7:30 pm.
Kafka and other eminent German-language modernists admired his work, but only posthumously has Robert Walser’s originality been widely appreciated. Like Kafka, he renders the most ordinary experience extraordinary, haunted by the eternal questions about what it means to be human.
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Led by Douglas Post. Eight sessions, 5:45 - 7:45 pm.
The art form of the American musical is as big and broad as the country that spawned it, and it allows for infinite variety in the ways it incorporates comedy, farce, drama, history, and religious themes into its mix. This seminar will examine eight shows that span that spectrum…
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Led by Steven Venturino. Eight sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
Charles Dickens’s David Copperfield is one of the Victorian era’s most beloved books, filled with memorable characters, entertaining plot twists, and poignant insights. This seminar invites participants to immerse themselves in the world of the novel…
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Led by Frank Biletz. Ten sessions, 1 - 3 pm (Section A) or 5:45 - 7:45 pm (Section B)
The First World War transformed the European political and social order, as well its cultural life, completely and irrevocably. As centennial commemorations mark the war’s major events, this course will treat such topics as the causes of the conflict, the major military campaigns…
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Led by Daniele Macuglia. Six sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
This course will provide a focus on the life and works of Leonardo da Vinci. We will learn about Leonardo as an artist and engineer; we will delve into his anatomical research and his studies of the flight of birds; and we will analyze his significant inventions like weapons and flying machines.
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Led by Nina Wieda. Six sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
Today’s Russia appears less enigmatic when considered in the context of its intellectual history. In the environment of censorship and stifled social debate, Russian thinkers traditionally expressed their ideas through literature.
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Led by Jeffrey Nigro. Six sessions, 5:45 - 7:45 pm.
Explore the dynamic art and compelling life of the Italian baroque painter Caravaggio through a discussion of images and selected readings. Caravaggio’s vivid and radical style, often controversial in his lifetime, inspired followers in Italy and throughout Europe…
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Led by Mary Wisniewski. Eight sessions, 6 - 7:30 pm.
A personal journal can be many things—a confessional, an historic record, as well as a practice field to try out new ideas and ways of writing. It’s also a way to maintain a sense of privacy and introspection in a chaotic, tweet-filled world.
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Led by John Gibbons. Eight sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
The period from 1840 (Tchaikovsky’s birth) to World War I saw a seismic shift in the agendas and techniques of Romantic composers.
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Led by Susan Bazargan. Six sessions, 6 - 7:30 pm.
This course will introduce you to the joyful world of Finnegans Wake by focusing on selected tales embedded in the book. You will be offered some basic tools needed to enter and explore Joyce’s fascinating “Echoland.”
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Led by Christopher Fletcher. Six sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
This seminar explores the legacy and impact of the Reformation on modern-day society. Each meeting examines a hallmark of modernity (e.g., social justice, mass media, religious liberty) that was profoundly shaped by the religious changes unleashed by Martin Luther’s spiritual revolution 500 years ago.
Thursday, February 15, 2018
Led by Guy Marco. Eight sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
This is the second of two seminars covering the people, organizations, and events of music in New York City. We will study the era from 1930 to recent times, hearing the big bands, great songwriters, and eminent jazz artists.
Thursday, February 15, 2018
Led by Richard Reeder. Five sessions, 5:45 - 7:45 pm.
In 1921, Ben Hecht began writing a daily column for the Chicago Daily News, called 1001 Afternoons in Chicago, which were fictive sketches of Chicago’s bustling urban landscape of that time. A year later, 64 of these columns were compiled in a book with the same title…
Thursday, February 15, 2018
Led by Julia Bachrach and Kathleen Dickhut. Six sessions, 5:45 - 7:45 pm.
Known as the “City of Neighborhoods,” Chicago is a tapestry of communities that are often in flux. This seminar explores the past, present, and future of three neighborhood clusters—Logan Square and Humboldt Park; Garfield Park to Fulton Market; and Englewood, Washington Park, and Grand Boulevard.
Thursday, February 15, 2018
Led by Margaret Farr. Six sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
Photographs permeate our lives, from cellphone pictures to photojournalism to art photography. Discover the history of photography as an art form in this seminar surveying the medium from its beginnings in 1839 to the present.
Thursday, February 15, 2018
Led by Joseph Harrington. Four sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
There would be no modern economy if moral and political philosophers in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries had not overcome notions of virtue that equated the pursuit of self-interest with the sin of avarice.
Tuesday, February 20, 2018
Led by Bill Savage. Seven sessions, 6 - 7:30 pm.
In this seminar, we will explore (in texts and on site) the difference between plans and realities and how history is written into, and out of, Chicago’s very streets. After one meeting at the Newberry, we will convene at different spots across Chicago…
Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Led by Dagmar Herrmann. Eight sessions, 5:45 - 7:45 pm.
Once in a generation there is a rebellion that resonates across the globe. Fifty years ago, the Prague Spring—an attempt in Czechoslovakia to liberalize the country through reforms based on an individual’s right to freedom of speech—might have been the most ambitious to date.
Thursday, February 22, 2018
Led by Todd Bauer. Eight sessions, 6 - 7:30 pm.
In this lecture and discussion-based seminar, we will examine the rich period of European theater from the mid-twentieth century to the present.
Saturday, February 24, 2018, Saturday, April 21, 2018
Led by Jeff Nigro & John Nygro. One session, 9 am - noon (Section A), 1 - 4 pm (Section B)
Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt, has become a figure of myth and legend far beyond the realities of her life, in large part thanks to her portrayals in the arts…
Saturday, February 24, 2018
Led by Kathleen Murphy Skolnik. Four sessions, 1 - 3 pm.
Art Deco captured the attention of the world in the 1920s and ‘30s. A term that defies definition, its manifestations range from soaring setback skyscrapers to simple streamlined factories, from modern interpretations of classic French cabinets to skyscraper-inspired bookcases…
Saturday, February 24, 2018
Led by Frank Biletz. Ten sessions, 10 am - noon.
This course will explore the transformation of the “empire on which the sun never set” during the twentieth century. We will consider such topics as the Boer War, the impact of the First and Second World Wars on the Empire…
Saturday, February 24, 2018
Led by Beatriz Gartler. Eight sessions, 10 am - noon.
Like any form of art, poetry requires practice. It needs curiosity, determination, a willingness to learn from others, and an open mind. In this workshop we will learn from published poets and each other.
Saturday, February 24, 2018
Led by Sarah Kernan. One session, 1 - 4 pm.
The medieval and Renaissance feast was a grand showcase of wealth and power, designed to stimulate all the senses and improve or confirm one’s social standing. In this seminar we will explore several historic feasts…
Saturday, February 24, 2018
Led by Harrison Sherrod. One session, 10 am - 2 pm.
A specter is haunting America—the specter of Marx. In the wake of the 2008 economic meltdown, Occupy Wall St., and a presidential bid by a self-proclaimed democratic socialist, Karl Marx seems primed for a comeback. This seminar will provide an accessible introduction to Marxist thought, exploding many Marx myths along the way.
Tuesday, February 27, 2018
Led by Debra Mancoff. Six sessions, 5:45 - 7:45 pm.
When we look at a portrait of a man we usually ask, “Who was he?” but we rarely ask, “What is he wearing?” This six-week seminar will answer that question using the methods of art history and dress history to better understand the dress code of status, society, and the self.
Wednesday, February 28, 2018
Led by John Nygro. Six sessions, 2 - 4 pm.
For over four centuries, Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar has inspired audience members to examine their beliefs about politics, power, democracy, authoritarianism, and the unintended consequences of their actions. We will read, view, and discuss Shakespeare’s entire play…
Thursday, March 1, 2018
Led by John Suiter. Six sessions, 5:45 - 7:45 pm.
“Tumultuous” is how historians describe the year 1968. Indeed, to recall (or first learn about) the one-after-another events of that year—from the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy to the Democratic National Convention…
Saturday, March 3, 2018
Led by Debra Mancoff. One session, 1 - 4 pm.
The phrase widows weeds conjures up swathes of ebony crêpe, black lace, and jet jewelry. But a century ago it meant so much more! This one-day seminar, merging methods of art, dress, and social history, explores the evolution of mourning dress and ritual in Great Britain and beyond.
Saturday, March 3, 2018
Led by Jeffrey Nigro. One session, 9 am - noon.
This one-day seminar will explore the visual arts during the French Revolution, a tumultuous moment for the arts, politics, and society.
Saturday, March 3, 2018, Saturday, April 7, 2018
Led by Esther Hershenhorn. One session, 9 am - 4 pm
Do you still want to realize your dream to write a children’s book someday? Anxious to learn what to do once you write it? This workshop introduces newcomers to today’s children’s book world…
Saturday, March 10, 2018
Led by Carol LaChapelle. One session, 10 am - 4 pm (1 hr lunch).
This workshop is offered for those interested in writing family stories—those real-life accounts of the important people, places, and events in their own and their family’s lives.