Village University Fall 2020

All Fall Village University classes will meet online using Zoom.
Since our offices are still closed, we would appreciate if you would make your donation online. Click here to donate online. Email us with questions at


We will discuss the current composition and history of the Court as well as the President’s legal disputes with the House of Representatives and other Court challenges to the Executive Branch. In that review we will explore whether the Court is still an independent body or has it become just another political branch? We will also analyze several leading cases decided in 2020. These cases concern: the subpoenas of the President’s tax returns; LGBT discrimination; DACA; insurance companies reimbursements and the birth control mandate under Obamacare; abortion; separation of Church and State; the Sixth Amendment requirement of a unanimous jury; Robocalls and the First Amendment; and “faithless electors” in Presidential elections. There are required readings and vigorous and respectful discussion is encouraged. All the cases are new and prior participants are most welcome.

4 Tuesdays, September 29th – October 20th, 9:30-11:30 am


Reading Lau tzu’s Tao Te Ching with Tony Fairbank

The Tao Te Ching is one of the great classics of Chinese (and world) philosophy, and has been translated into English more than any other Chinese text. In this six-week course we will look at this short Taoist classic bilingually—that is to say, we will base our discussions on the Chinese original, along with the recent English translation by Red Pine (Bill Porter). In this way, we will be able to see the poetry and structure of the language, while paying attention to important Chinese terms and ideas not otherwise accessible to non-Chinese readers. Whether you are a native-born Chinese reader, a student of world philosophy, or simply someone who wants to read the words of one of humanity’s brightest candles, this online course should prove enjoyable, educational, and enlightening. Required text: Red Pine, Lao-tzu’s Taoteching, Copper Canyon Press; 3rd Revised edition (2009). Paperback and Kindle editions available.

6 Tuesdays, September 29th – November 3rd, 2:00-3:30 pm


What is a symphony? When did it first appear? Where did it come from? This course will answer all of these questions – and more – before diving deeply into some of the great symphonies written by such composers as Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Stravinsky and Shostakovich. Finally, we will try to answer the question, “Why have no significant symphonies been written in the last 50 years?” This is a listening course, and no knowledge of music or music theory is required.
9 Wednesdays, October 7th – December 16th, 11 am-12 pm
*Participants who were enrolled in Keith’s Spring class are automatically enrolled for the fall.


Have you ever considered what distinguishes snapshots from fine art photographs? Have you thought about how intent, point-of-view, image style and/or composition impact the strength and meaning of a photograph? Would you like to learn the language of photography to better appreciate images and broaden your grasp of the medium? By focusing on the ”art of photography,” this 5-week course will examine how artists employ photography to creatively express ideas, messages and emotions. Several guest photographers will make presentations to share their work. During these sessions, we’ll utilize the language of photography as a tool for discussion and learning. While the course won’t concentrate on photo techniques per se, we’ll surely touch on types of cameras, exposure, digital features, printing and the like. Since all of us take photos — in one form or another — a richer understanding of the medium and creative methods should be valuable to everyone. At the last session, you’ll have the option to share your own photography with the class. You need not be a “photographer” to enjoy and benefit from the content of this course.
5 Thursdays, October 8th – November 5th, 10:30 am – 12 pm

The Village University, established in 2003, was inspired by Elliot and Alma Ring, and offers courses for mature learners who are seeking stimulating study and conversation about interesting topics. The courses are taught by academics, scholars, and educational leaders who volunteer to share their knowledge and inspire others. The volunteer instructors bring the best university-level learning experiences to Concord and Carlisle. Our dedicated coordinators include Richard Cornell, Nancy Cronin, Gini Goulet, Ellie Gower, Nancy Hendrie, Bill Koenigsberg, Carol Murphree, Murray Nicolson, Meryl Schwartz, Alma Ring, Phil Stark, Rosalie Weiss, and Win Wilbur.

CCACE is thrilled to be able to offer Village University programs to our community members. We request a donation of $60 for the first course and $30 for each additional Village University course. Adult & Community Education is made possible through student fees, with student financial aid made possible in part through a grant from the Concord Carlisle Community Chest. The Village University is supported entirely by voluntary donations and your donations help us promote the programs.