Midlothian, VA. 804.378.2527

Lifelong Learning Chesterfield

History, Humanities and International Studies - Spring 2018              


Lifelong Learning Institute 
in Chesterfield                         

                                                                                    Not an LLI member? Join here now. It's easy!   

The Dead Sea Scrolls                                     

Wednesday                                      HS181233           

9:30-11:30                          

Jan 3, 10, 17, 24, 31, Feb 7

Instructor(s): Glenn Markus

On the western shore of the Dead Sea, about eight miles south of Jericho, lies a complex of ruins known as Khirbet Qumran. The site occupies one of the lowest spots on the earth. At this location were found more than 900 individual documents that shook the world of biblical studies. Known as the Dead Sea Scrolls, the documents contain not only the oldest copies of biblical texts, but also the Jewish texts that date from the 3rd Century BC through Rome's catastrophic war with Judea in the 1st Century AD.

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Yankees at the Battle of Cold Harbor                                    

Tuesday                                              HS181349           

10:00-11:00                        

Jan 9

Instructor(s): Waite Rawls

One of the most brutal combat actions in the war involved the 2nd Connecticut Heavy Artillery at the Battle of Cold Harbor. What happened there and why will be the focus, heavily illustrated with photographs of the battlefield in Hanover County. You don't need to be a dedicated Civil War buff to enjoy this course!

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Amending the Constitution                                       

Wednesday                                      HS181344           

1:00-2:30                             

Jan 10

Instructor(s): Gary Porter

There is general agreement that the federal government today bears little resemblance to its 1789 predecessor. What began as a government of limited and enumerated powers is today able to “do most anything in this country,” in the (in)famous words of former Representative Peter Stark of California. Over the years, various Supreme Court decisions have re-interpreted the Constitution in such a way that the federal government can now tax without limit, borrow without limit, spend without limit, delegate its legislative power without limit and regulate American business without limit. Does there remain anything that Congress can’t do? Is this the government we want? Many Americans are rightfully concerned about where this situation is headed, not just in terms of national debt, but also in terms of the intrusiveness of the federal government into nearly every aspect of our daily lives. Some say it is time to “put government back in its box” by amending the Constitution, others insist that an amendments convention would be dangerous, perhaps doing more harm than good. Who’s right? Come hear the Article V process explained and the pros and cons of an amendments convention compared.

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The Golden Age of Radio                                            

Thursday                                            HS181328           

1:30-3:00                             

Jan 11, 18, 25, Feb 1

Instructor(s): John G. DeMajo

Back by popular demand! The railroads may have built America, but it was Radio that built American culture. Come with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear as engineer and communications historian, John DeMajo, takes you on a journey to a time before the advent of television, when Radio and the Theater Of The Mind brought a nation of many cultures together. We will explore popular comedy, news, drama and variety shows of the day as America faced The Roaring Twenties, Great Depression, World War II and the transition to television.

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Great Decisions                                               

Tuesday                                              HS181089            *$30

1:30-3:00                             

Jan 16, Feb 20, March 20, April 24

Instructor(s): Bob Ferguson

The Great Decisions board prepares a book covering eight topics each year. This course will be using the new 2018 edition along with a DVD for most of the monthly meetings. In addition, four other topics will be covered to create a year-long curriculum. This courses purpose is twofold: 1) to learn more about the topic and 2) students share comments and opinions about the topic. Topics are: January - The Waning of Pax Americana; February - Russia's Foreign Policy; March - Europe Under Pressure (not in book); April - China and America. Note that this is a good time to purchase the Great Decisions book, as it will be used all year long. Purchase of the book through LLI is optional, and payment is due at registration.

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Current Events Discussion A                                      

Wednesday                                      HS181003           

12:30-1:45                          

Jan 17, Feb 7, 28, March 21, April 11

Instructor(s): Fred Nelson

Please register for only one session (A or B) to allow all students a chance to participate. Each class begins with a short introduction by the moderator, who will suggest current event topics of international, national, state, and local importance.  Students will determine the choice of topics for a round-table discussion in which everyone's viewpoint is important and during which differing opinions are always respected.

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Current Events Discussion B                                      

Wednesday                                      HS181004           

2:15-3:30                             

Jan 17, Feb 7, 28, March 21, April 11

Instructor(s): Fred Nelson

Please register for only one session (A or B) to allow all students a chance to participate. Each class begins with a short introduction by the moderator, who will suggest current event topics of international, national, state, and local importance.  Students will determine the choice of topics for a round-table discussion in which everyone's viewpoint is important and during which differing opinions are always respected.

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Pearl Harbor and Richmond                                       

Friday                                  HS181342           

9:30-11:00                          

Jan 19

Instructor(s): Thomas A. Tokarz

One would never forget the interrupted radio program with the news, "The Japanese have attacked Pearl Harbor," and then not knowing for three weeks if friends and family members survived or not. Fast forward to years later to learn the final death count and to hear that three alarming messages were ignored by upper command. The Japanese were sighted prior to reaching Hawaii! It took 60 bus trips to get the approximate 37,000 service personnel back to their bases that fateful Sunday from Richmond. Why were they in Richmond? Join this class to find out this answer and more. Coffee and donuts will be available for pre-class fellowship.

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Monuments Men and Nazi Europe                                         

Monday                                              HS181292           

11:15-12:45                        

Jan 22, 29

Instructor(s): Kenneth D. Alford

Van Eyck's "Ghent Altarpiece", Michaelango's "Statue of Madonna and Child", Vermeer's "The Artist in His Studio"; what happened to these celebrated artworks and other treasures procured by the Third Reich during the thirties and forties? Monuments Men - Nazi Europe answers that question while telling a remarkable story of greed and avarice, with war-torn Europe as its backdrop. More than fifty years of research and documentation have revealed the extent to which the German Forces stole from the land they occupied and portrays the American military as both liberators and plunderers themselves. Van Eyck's "Ghent Altarpiece" and Michaelango's "Statue of Madonna and Child" were featured in the movie "Monuments Men". The class will start by revealing fact verses fiction in this excellent movie.

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Heroes and Villains of Chesterfield County: A Brief Overview (1749-2009)                                         

Tuesday                                              HS181310           

11:30-1:00                          

Jan 23, 30

Instructor(s): Russ Lescault

Since its founding in 1749, Chesterfield County has been a quiet area, except on rare occasions when heinous crimes disturbed the tranquility of the community. Lecturer will discuss the high-profile crimes, law enforcement trends and civic heroes throughout the history of Chesterfield County. This course will include discussion on such incidents as dueling, notorious homicides, arsonist, violent moonshine raids, escapes from the county jail, hostage and barricade situations, vicious domestics and other mayhem. Additionally, ten heroes that made the ultimate sacrifice or devoted their lives to protect others will be profiled. The first class will cover 18th and 19th Century, whereas the second class will cover the 20th and 21st Centuries.

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Holocaust Survivor: Never Forget History                                           

Friday                                  HS181343           

9:30-11:00                          

Jan 26

Instructor(s): Thomas A. Tokarz and Jay Ipson

Jay Ipson, a Holocaust survivor and co-founder of the Virginia Holocaust Museum, will recount some of his experiences living in a hole in the middle of a farm field for six months. He survived the Ghetto and Nazi occupation as well as the lack of food and memories of some of his friends being exterminated by firing squads and concentration camps. A compelling man with a compelling warning message: "Never forget history". Coffee and donuts will be available for pre-class fellowship.

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The Civil War through Stories, Letters, and Artifacts                                      

Thursday                                            HS181340           

9:00-10:30                          

Feb 1, 8, 15

Instructor(s): James Triesler

Learn about the Civil War through stories, letters, and artifacts. This course will discuss how the South managed to fight for four years, when the Union possessed the vast majority of resources. It will look at artifacts that reflect the Northern blockade of the South and consider the impact that the war had on civilians in both the North and the South. Although the course includes some military history, it focuses more on the experiences of those who lived through it.

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Hanover Tavern and County in the Civil War                                     

Monday                                              HS181348           

11:30-12:30                        

Feb 5

Instructor(s): Tom Seabrook

The Hanover Tavern is one of only a few surviving colonial era taverns in the United States. It has hosted such historic figures as George Washington, Lord Cornwallis, and the Marquis de Lafayette. For almost two centuries the Tavern provided meals and lodging to those having business before the Hanover County courts. The Tavern served as post office for the area from the 1790s until 1911. Hanover Tavern Foundation, a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization, bought the Tavern in 1990 with the mission to restore, preserve, and utilize Hanover Tavern as an historical, educational, community and cultural resource center. This course will cover Hanover County and Hanover Tavern history during the Civil War, 1861-1865.

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Global Cultural Geography: The Middle East Past and Present                                  

Tuesday                                              HS181087           

10:00-12:00                        

Feb 6, 13

Instructor(s): William Seay

Cultural geography is one of the two major branches of geography (versus physical geography) and is often called human geography. Cultural geography is the study of the many cultural aspects found throughout the world and how they relate to the spaces and places where they originate and then travel as people continually move across various areas.

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Anthropology Discussion A:  We, the Alien!                                      

Wednesday                                      HS181337           

12:00-1:00                          

Feb 14, March 14, April 11

Instructor(s): Annebel Lewis

Please register for only one session (A or B) to allow all students a chance to participate. This is a monthly DISCUSSION group (not a lecture course). Anthropology provides a lens through which we can continue to understand the world. The most dangerous assumption is to presume that you already understand. THINK! Step outside your box and discover your intellectual wanderlust! Students need to be prepared to contribute to an active dialogue. First, we will learn a great deal about culture and about ourselves by inventing a culture that has never existed. Discussion topics will include Bread and Work, Conflict and Order, Power and Social Control and Born Equal.

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Theodore Roosevelt: A Really Bully President                                  

Tuesday                                              HS181339           

9:30-11:00                          

Feb 20, 27, March 13, 20, 27, April 10, 17, 24

Instructor(s): Shep Smith

Theodore Roosevelt (don't call him Teddy!) grew from a sickly boy to live a life filled with vigor and adventure. He became a cowboy, a rough riding soldier, and the youngest president in American history who gave Americans the Square Deal and Big Stick diplomacy. His reform policies caused him to be considered to be a traitor by his fellow aristocrats but a hero to the American people. He was an author, soldier, outdoorsman, environmentalist, and president whose use of the bully pulpit earned him a place on Mt. Rushmore.

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Bon Air History: Prominent Founders and Families                                        

Wednesday                                      HS181238           

10:30-12:00                        

Feb 21

Instructor(s): Lenard W. Tuck, Jr.

This course will provide an introductory history of the affluent Chesterfield county community first developed as a post-war resort that attracted prominent cultural, military, business and social leaders of 19th century Richmond, becoming one of the most historically significant communities in the Richmond area.

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The Second Amendment                                            

Wednesday                                      HS181345           

1:00-2:30                             

Feb 21

Instructor(s): Gary Porter

What about the Second Amendment? There is perhaps no more controversial topic in America today than gun control. Controversial topics do not become less controversial by avoiding discussion of them. So let’s pick apart the issue of guns in America, the role the Second Amendment plays in that issue, the role of natural law, and whether there is room for agreement as the country moves forward. How did Americans view the issue prior to the ratification of the Second Amendment? What positions have the courts taken? Does the Second Amendment secure only a collective right or also an individual right?

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Anthropology Discussion B:  We, the Alien!                                       

Wednesday                                      HS181338           

1:30-2:30                             

Feb 28, March 28, April 25

Instructor(s): Annebel Lewis

Please register for only one session (A or B) to allow all students a chance to participate. This is a monthly DISCUSSION group (not a lecture course). Anthropology provides a lens through which we can continue to understand the world. The most dangerous assumption is to presume that you already understand. THINK! Step outside your box and discover your intellectual wanderlust! Students need to be prepared to contribute to an active dialogue. First, we will learn a great deal about culture and about ourselves by inventing a culture that has never existed. Discussion topics will include Bread and Work, Conflict and Order, Power and Social Control and Born Equal.

                                ______________________________


The Sixties Part II                                            

Friday                                  HS181325           

9:30-11:00                          

March 2, 9, 23, 30

Instructor(s): Dr. John Lemza

Part II of this course will continue to examine the political, social, cultural and economic aspects of the United States during the “Sixties.” It was a time of transformation for America driven by the engines of shifting demographics, emerging ideologies, and disparate movements that repudiated existing conditions and rigid social norms, and lent their energies to revisions of the traditional consensus. In that context the course will continue to investigate the long decade that began with the Beat Generation of the 1950s and resonated through the “Me Decade” of the 1970s.

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Nazi Treasures Recovery and Restoration                                           

Monday                                              HS181286           

11:15-12:45                        

March 5, 12, 19

Instructor(s): Kenneth D. Alford

This course will cover the history of Hermann Goering's art and war trophies, the theft and final settlement of the Hungarian Gold Train, allied looting by American Soldiers, and the history of the U.S. Foreign Exchange Depository and Settlement of 360 tons of Nazi tainted gold to the Allies.

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Presidential Executive Orders                                  

Wednesday                                      HS181346           

1:00-2:30                             

Mar 7

Instructor(s): Gary Porter

What's Up with presidential executive orders? The Constitution does not mention presidential executive orders, so does this mean they are an unconstitutional use of the president’s executive power? Many presidents have been criticized over the years for certain executive orders and occasionally the Courts have gotten involved or been pulled into the issue. Emergency executive orders have been approved which will give the federal government dictatorial power during times of emergency. Should this concern us or is it merely reflective of sound planning? Come hear the full story of presidential executive orders. Are they proper or not?

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World War I through Stories: The War to End All Wars                                 

Thursday                                            HS181341           

9:00-10:30                          

March 15, 22, 29

Instructor(s): James Triesler

Learn about World War I through stories, letters, and artifacts. This course will discuss President Wilson’s reluctance to go to war, America’s involvement in the War, and the aftermath leading to the Treaty of Versailles. It will also take a look at the impact that WWI had on professional baseball players and their teams. Come learn about this important period of our history from a century ago!

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Adolf Hitler’s Affairs and Death                                               

Monday                                              HS181322           

11:15-12:45                        

April 9

Instructor(s): Kenneth D. Alford

Few stories are better known or more poorly documented than that of the women seduced by Adolf Hitler and his final days in a Berlin Bunker. Only two women had emerged with any clarity from Adolf Hitler's shadowy private life: his youthful niece, Geli Raubal, and Eva Braun. Both died violent deaths at their own hands as did four others. Popular imagination the world over has been quick to seize on the macabre details of those affairs and the last days in the bunker in flaming Berlin, where a mad genius cringed in the rain of Soviet artillery and felt the walls of his terrible world closing in upon him. This course will cover the suicide of his scheming henchman, the defection of those who fattened on the blood he had spilled, the last-minute marriage with his blowzy mistress Eva Braun, the suicide pact they made together, and the final dispatch of their bodies to Valhalla in the flames of a funeral pyre. All this and more wrote a tawdry Wagnerian finish to this evil story.

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Sister Cities:  Richmond and Ségou, Mali in West Africa                                               

Thursday                                            HS181350           

9:30-11:00                          

April 12

Instructor(s): Dr. Robin Poulton

Ségou is a town and an urban commune in south-central Mali that lies 146 miles northeast of the River Niger. What does that have to do with Richmond? America has hundreds of sister cities; Richmond has half a dozen, and this course tells the story of the most exciting partnership.  Dr. Poulton will share all about the education, health and friendship adventures in Africa and in Virginia, in Segou and Richmond since 2005. He will also share the exciting world exclusive launch of his new book, written with Ana Edwards and scheduled to launch in April 2018: “Sister Cities: Virginian Sisters from Ségou and Malian Brothers from Richmond, All Descended from Africa.” Books may or may not be available for purchase by the class date.

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Natural Law                                       

Wednesday                                      HS181347           

1:00-2:30                             

April 18

Instructor(s): Gary Porter

What's the big deal about natural law? Thomas Jefferson wrote that it was a self-evident truth that we are endowed by our Creator “with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” The Founders believed these natural rights, as they called them, were a product of a natural law, a law that existed even prior to the first human society, a law promulgated by the Creator of the universe. Today that thesis is very much under attack. Do natural law and natural rights still exist, or have they been replaced by positive (man-made, civil) law and positive/civil rights? Are there ramifications to abandoning the viewpoint of the Founders?

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About Fees
Your Lifelong Learning Institute membership gives you access to all of LLI classes and trips, most without any additional costs. There are some classes and trips which require additional fees. Where there are additional fees, those fees must be paid at the time of registration. Fees can be paid by check, cash or credit card. If paying by check, please clearly indicate the classes and trips being covered.