Harper College: Experience the Nature of Antarctica

Antarctica: the highest, driest, coldest, windiest, and brightest of the seven continents. It is almost completely covered by a layer of ice that averages more than a mile in thickness, but can extend to nearly three. Instructor Suzanne Rausch will explore the variety of animals – who depend on this inhospitable land for their reproductive cycles before venturing into the open ocean for their adult lives. She will discuss ongoing factors impacting the continent and its inhabitants. Last, she will walk us through Antarctica’s human history and mankind’s struggles to explore this frozen world.

Harper College: Mind Games

In this engaging and interactive program, William Pack explores the real science of how our brains trick us into seeing and believing things that don’t exist. You’ll experience how optical illusions work, why people fall for scams, and how we make thousands of choices every day, including how we are hard-wired to believe fake news. William will also give proven, scientific, actionable techniques to preserve brain health and overcome the logical fallacies we all make. In the end, you may be left wondering if your brain has a mind of its own.

Harper College: Chicago’s Golden Age of Department Stores

For decades, Chicago was home to some of the nation’s grandest department stores. Clustered mostly along a mile-long stretch of State Street, generations of Chicagoans trekked to stores like Marshall Field’s, Carson, Pirie, Scott, Sears, Wieboldt’s and Goldblatt’s, which set new standards for retail innovation, customer service, and visual display.

This nostalgic lecture uses photographs and memorabilia to revisit Chicago’s fabulous retail emporiums and explore their rise and fall. Instructor Leslie Goddard earned her Ph.D. in US History and Women’s Studies from Northwestern University. She is a former museum director and the author of the book Remembering Marshall Field’s.

Harper College: Environmental Issues, What We are Learning from Yellowstone National Park

Americans can take pride in the initiation of the national park concept. Since it’s legal beginnings with the introduction of Yellowstone National Park in 1872, Americans have had to deal with issues that have become a national concern and triggered an ongoing political conversation with regards to wildlife management. Conservation and recreation have often come into conflict. We will discuss the history and current state of key issues the Parks are working through and learn about in our nation’s first national park.

Harper College: Bioethics Topics, Conflicts and Controversies

This lecture takes us into the world of medical controversies. Even with early screening and testing, occasionally a rare medical issue will challenge parents and modern medicine. Hospital policies, doctors’ medical opinions, and parental love can be set in a conflict in such cases. Who decides the final course of action? We will discuss controversial cases of conjoined
twins and other rare conditions that challenge the best skilled medical professionals and our notion of a quality of life.

Harper College: The Rule of Law

As political humorist P.J. O’Rourke famously put it, “The U.S. Constitution is less than a quarter the length of the owner’s manual for a 1998 Toyota Camry, and yet it has managed to keep 300 million of the world’s most unruly, passionate and energetic people safe, prosperous and free.” In the last of her five-part series, Why I’m Optimistic, Myra examines, both current issues challenging Constitutional norms and historical examples of the power of the rule of law to, eventually, attempt to provide “Liberty and Justice For All.”

Harper College: Do Not Forget the Ladies

In the fourth of her five-part series “Why I’m Optimistic”, Myra Loris explores, both personal and historical, reasons for optimism in an often complex and confusing world. “Do Not Forget the Ladies” will look at the historical and ongoing struggle of American women.

Harper College: Germany’s Current Affairs

After the last German elections and their upsetting results, it took almost six months until Chancellor Angela Merkel was able to create a new coalition government. Last spring Europe’s most populous nation was taken by surprise when the Trump administration threatened high tariffs on luxury cars and other products made in Germany. Add to that the challenging integration of Muslim refugees and the disappointment of many East Germans over unequal living conditions thirty years after the Fall of the Berlin Wall; no wonder the country is currently experiencing turbulent times.

Harper College: Onward and Upward

In the third of her five-part series “Why I’m Optimistic”, Myra Loris looks at the many ways in which science, technology, and protection of the environment have accelerated as priorities in contemporary America, often in the face of opposition and deregulation. She will discuss advances in space and medicine, the fight against climate change and much more!

Harper College: A Child Shall Lead Them with Myra Loris

In the second of her five-part series “Why I’m Optimistic,” Myra Loris takes a look at the prominence of young people as agents of social change and expanded equality both past and present. Topics include the Children’s March of 1903, the Children’s Crusade of 1963, the “Never Again” March of 2018, and much more. She breaks down trends and events in contemporary American life that encourage optimism;in short, why we have reasons to be optimistic.

Why I’m Optimistic with Myra Loris

In the first of her five-part series, Harper College Instructor Myra Loris presents Optimism Overall: a look at prominent contemporary and historical philosophies about the power of optimism. She’ll include a breakdown of trends and events in contemporary American life that encourage optimism; in short, why we have reason to be optimistic.

Hitler Vs. Art

Being obsessive-compulsive about all of his ideas, Adolph Hitler was specific about which sculpture, paintings, dance and music would be tolerated and collected by the Reich and which “degenerative” art had to be destroyed. Harper College instructor Ann Leslie takes you down the Nazi path of destruction as she describes how they stole and destroyed some of the world’s most precious work.

Why It Matters: Culture

What is the role of the arts and culture? Harper College instructor Myra Loris explores some of the ways in which culture has reflected and created a unique American historical experience. Review the New Deal Arts Programs at the 1933 and 1965 World’s Fairs, art as a propaganda tool during WWII, and more.

Why It Matters: Immigration

Harper College instructor Myra Loris shares current issues relating to immigration and when, historically, we have addressed the issues in successful and meaningful ways, advancing both the individuals involved and the nation. Focuses on the work and ideas of Jacob Riis, Lillian Wald, Jane Addams, LBJ and more.

Harper: Royal Weddings with Leslie Goddard

Few events thrill us like royal weddings — both as public ceremonies and as personal milestones. These occasions feel like living fairytales. In this illustrated lecture, historian Leslie Goddard explores the history of ten royal marriages, including those of Queen Vic-toria, Queen Elizabeth II, and Princes Charles, William, and Harry. You’ll get beyond their glamour to develop an understanding of how these occasions strengthen notions of national identity. You will also consider how royal couples negotiated the balance between a significant personal occasion and powerful national pressures from Victoria and Albert to Harry and Megan.

Why It Matters: Infrastructure

Harper College instructor Myra Loris explores the current state of US infrastructure and when, historically, we have successfully mastered the infrastructure challenges that an expanding nation required. She will examine the Transcontinental Railroad, the Erie Canal, the WPA, the Federal Highway Program and more.

Harper College: Natural Disasters – How to Prepare for Them

Natural disasters are a 24/7, anywhere-everywhere, equal-opportunity event. We may not be home when one happens. What if we’re at the market, in our car, or out walking? It’s essential to recognize how even small events can become life-threatening within moments. Disasters can be overwhelming, so how can we prepare for them and their devastating effects? Come away with solid ideas you can implement if needed

Harper: The Vatican Part II

Take a journey inside the walls of the Vatican. Explore the Belvedere Gardens, Vatican Library and the Vatican Museums and see the great works of artists such as Raphael, Michelangelo, and the masterpieces of classical sculpture. Learn about the contributions and foibles of some of the more famous (or infamous) Popes. Discover lesser known parts of this complex structure. Even if you haven’t been to Rome, you will come away with a better understanding of this amazingly fascinating city.

Harper: Stepping into Illinois History

Celebrate the Illinois Bicentennial by investigating the fascinating historical sites in our state. Discover the ancient Native American city at Cahokia Mounds, the seat of the French government at Fort de Chartres, and Camp DuBois where Lewis and Clark spent the winter before their Voyage of Discovery. See how early Illinois residents lived in Bishop Hill and Nauvoo, and visit the homes of Presidents Lincoln and Grant.