All courses will meet at the Waters-Moss Memorial Wildlife Preservation Area, primarily in the Moss Building and occasionally in the Hillcrest Community Center unless otherwise indicated.

Contact Osher@Mizzou

Email or call 573-882-8189.

To register for classes, call 573-882-8189.

Tuesday courses

Fall 2019 Semester

Poet from St. Louis: T. S. Eliot and the Revolution in Modern Poetry [8 Sessions]

10:00 - 11:30 a.m., Moss A  
Tuesdays: Sept. 10, 17, 24; Oct. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

An internationally famous poet and Nobel Prize winner, T. S. Eliot was born and raised in St. Louis and once told an audience at Washington University that “St. Louis affected me more deeply than any other environment has ever done.” Some of his earliest short poems have St. Louis settings, and his famous “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” takes the name Prufrock from a St. Louis merchant and its fog and claustrophobic streets from St. Louis as well as London and Paris. After he settled in London, Eliot published the poem that revolutionized the style of modernist poetry, The Waste Land. Despite an unfortunate marriage and work as a bank clerk, journalist and editor, Eliot produced celebrated poems such as “Sweeney Among the Nightingales,” “The Journey of the Magi” and the poem that marked his conversion to Anglo Catholicism, “Ash Wednesday.” As World War II threatened and then broke out, Eliot wrote the work that was celebrated as a patriotic and religious masterwork, Four Quartets. Any edition of Eliot’s poetry may be used, and the teacher will supply additional texts.

Instructor: Timothy Materer is an emeritus English professor at the University of Missouri. He has written six books on modern literature and has received MU teaching awards. He has frequently written and taught courses on T. S. Eliot.  

French Conversation [8 Sessions]

10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., Moss B  
Tuesdays: Sept. 10, 17, 24; Oct. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

Are you able to speak French enough to be chatty, at a level somewhere between intermediate and fluent? Are there two or three years of French study or its equivalent somewhere in your high school and/or college history? Reinvigorate and polish your French skills, play along with enthusiasts, strut vocabulary and gesture, and communicate with each other in a friendly, accepting setting. Speaking only French, you will read, act out and discuss passages from French literature, examine themes, imagine new endings and generally immerse yourself in the French language. There will be a choice of oral presentations and communicative activities relating to our reading and on various other topics of interest; some purely fun, but all encouraging serious communication. We end with a French film and a French déjeuner to which we all contribute. 

Instructor: Aline Kultgen is a native French speaker who taught French in Ontario, Canada, and for the Columbia Public Schools for a total of 25 years. She has been teaching French at Osher since 2006. 

Cancelled: What’s New? American Poetry Forges Ahead Toward Diversity, Inclusion, Social Justice [8 Sessions]

*Dr. Dillingham hopes to offer this course in a future Osher semester.
1:00 - 2:30 p.m., Moss A  
Tuesdays: Sept. 10, 17, 24; Oct. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

Limit 30 students.  

In spite of perennial gloomy predictions of the death of poetry—often asserted by practicing poets, sometimes by political or cultural critics—the evidence of publications—books and poetry journals, both printed and online—as well as the proliferation of public readings, poetry slams and performance poetry, argues that poetry in America is in a period of expansion and energy, with new voices, new styles as well as variations on traditional styles and forms. This course will look at numerous examples of recently published poems from formerly underrepresented or even unheard groups—African American, Asian-American, Native American, LGBTQ, Feminist—attending to their exploration of the possibilities of language under the pressure of new viewpoints, new politics, new sexualities, and more. Samples of poems for discussion will be provided each week, and students will be encouraged to share examples that interest or challenge them. We will find that the boundaries and definitions of poetry are expanding, not so much erased as reconfigured to accommodate and validate the new. 

Instructor: Thomas F. Dillingham earned his bachelor’s degree from Princeton University and his doctorate from Boston University. He taught English literature, especially 18th and 19th century British poetry, folklore, world mythologies, science fiction and contemporary poetry. He has published book reviews and essays in a number of journals, including Myths and Tales, Pleiades, Blake Quarterly and Missouri Review. 

Democracy Lab [8 Sessions]

2:00 - 3:30 p.m., Moss B  
Tuesdays: Sept. 10, 17, 24; Oct. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

Limit of 30 students.

As Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” In this class we will look at what various innovators are doing to improve our democracy and what we ourselves might do. The class will explore a range of current issues, depending in part on the interest of class members. Short readings will be assigned between classes. Expect to engage in small-group, interactive dialogues during this course. 

Instructor: Sarah J. Read has more than 25 years of experience in resolving complex issues as an attorney, mediator, facilitator and consultant. Sarah is a frequent speaker and writer on issues related to civic engagement, and has led several dialogue-based courses at Osher. Ms. Read received her B.A. Degree, cum laude, from Yale University and her Juris Doctorate degree with the Order of the Coif from the University of Wisconsin. 

Islamophobia: Fact or Fiction [4 Sessions]

3:00 - 4:30 p.m., Moss A  
Tuesdays: Sept. 10, 17, 24; Oct. 1 

Believe it or not, Islamophobia is on rise. Learn about Islam from very authentic sources. Through our “Faith Over Fear” trainings, participants will learn effective strategies to better advocate against a narrative of fear and divisiveness in our country. Additionally, the collaborative effort,“Shoulder to Shoulder,” envisions an America where people of all faiths and cultural backgrounds are treated respectfully, fairly and with dignity. We advance our vision by directly engaging faith leaders in the United States to be strategic partners in countering discrimination and violence against Muslims. 

Instructor: Rashed Nizam, M.D., D.O., FCPS, FAAO, is a board-certified ophthalmologist who has resided in Columbia since 1997. He is the founding director of the Mid-Missouri Eye Center in Moberly, a diplomat for the American Board of Ophthalmology and a fellow for the Institute of Clinical Ophthalmology, Kiryu, Japan. He is involved in various interfaith activities, including Faith Voices of Columbia, and sits in the board of the Religious Program Advisory Committee (RPAC) for the Missouri Department of Corrections.