We offer credit and noncredit learning opportunities in a variety of subjects, from more traditional disciplines such as literature and philosophy, to business-oriented courses, to master’s degrees. Our courses are conveniently located in-person at the University of Chicago Gleacher Center and NBC Tower in downtown Chicago, and are primarily in the evening and on weekends, to fit the schedule of working adults. We also offer online courses, for those not located in Chicago, or who wish to study from home.
Over the past century and a half American writers have created a body of literature great in its illumination into the deeps of the human condition and our own lives. This course offers a wide range of themes and authors.
Basic Program Year 1 continues with Winter Quarter.
Discount available to new students joining Year One of the Basic Program in Winter Quarter 2020. Receive $50 off tuition by using Discount Code: BPY150. This discount is available to new students from November 8 through December 31, 2019.
Death – the one event which happens to everyone, but which no one will be around to experience – presents many philosophical puzzles: whether it is some kind of misfortune to die (or not), whether immortality would be any better, how to die well, and above all how to understand human life in terms of its end.
Take your fiction or nonfiction to the next level in this critique-focused workshop. Bring a hard copy of your story or chapter to the first class session, and throughout this six-week course you'll be guided to a deeper and more cohesive work.
This second course in the “From Western to World Civilization” sequence focuses on the history of the Middle Ages and the Early Modern Period, including the rise of Islam, the Renaissance, Reformation, the Age of Exploration, to the eve of the French Revolution.
In the Winter Quarter seminar, we consider the period after the Civil War, when the country put itself back together as well as it could. New literary forms arise and older ones are refreshed, and a distinctively American viewpoint is mapped out in philosophy.
Beginning with the phenomena of prophecy, this course will study its historical development in the Ancient Near East and its literary development in the Bible.
Essentially defining the culture of the nineteenth century, the operas of the Italian Giuseppe Verdi and the German Richard Wagner continue to form the most stable theatrical repertory of the present day.
We will read and discuss five of the nine novels Vladimir Nabokov wrote in Russian while living as an exile in Berlin: Mary, King, Queen, Knave, The Defense, The Eye, and Glory. Part one of a two-quarter course sequence on Vladimir Nabkov's novels.
The Winter Quarter seminar focuses on themes of tyranny, revolution, and civil war. Some of the questions we will consider are: what makes a leader into a tyrant? Are tyrants necessarily bad? Is violence and civil war justified when seeking to oppose a tyrant?
This course is a three-quarter continuation of our exploration of what follows, in the twentieth century, after the transformation—and possibly collapse—of the modern tradition. As always, new students are welcome.
America in the era after World War II has birthed a society and cultural life filled with divisions and contradictions. This course will examine the roots and manifestations of the conflicts and the competing visions of a new America.
This course will introduce you to creative writing, from generating ideas to revising drafts. Find your voice and develop your craft through in-class and at-home writing exercises, and through discussions of your own and your fellow students’ written work.
What makes a piece of art great? What makes it deep, interesting, and meaningful? Just as we learn how to read fiction, we must learn the basic principles of visual art in order for the interaction to be worthwhile.
The Alexandria Quartet generates truly absorbing, deeply-interconnected characters. Durrell paints portraits that are totally persuasive – to us readers, and, at least temporarily, to the characters within them. First in a two-quarter course.
A reader of Rabelais, Montaigne, Cervantes, and Richard Burton, Sterne in his turn inspired Joyce, Nabokov, Beckett, Pirandello, Garcia Márquez, Kundera and Rushdie. We will approach Sterne’s novel as active, open-minded, and imaginative readers.
In this course, you will receive daily writing prompts (either via email or in person) as you develop your own writing practice and craft knowledge through reading and workshop discussion.
China’s economic development has today brought the world to the brink of a new superpower conflict. While American politicians accuse China of stealing US technology and jobs, Chinese leaders condemn Western double standards and insist that China’s economic success has enriched the world.
How Islam and its intellectual tradition are responding to the challenges of modernity? To what extent the diversity and transformations within Islamic thought over time can prevent clashes with the Western world?
Charles Dickens (1812-1870) was an emblematic Victorian figure, representative not least of his age’s relentless concern about the Condition of England. Industrial capitalism and urbanization were transforming an age-old landscape.
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