An Afternoon of Learning to Celebrate the 85th Anniversary of the Scarsdale Adult School
- Friday, 17 November 2023 12:14
- Last Updated: Friday, 17 November 2023 12:23
- Published: Friday, 17 November 2023 12:14
- Joanne Wallenstein
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You're invited to celebrate 85 years of continuing education at the Scarsdale Adult School afternoon of learning on Sunday December 3, from 1-4 at Temple Israel, New Rochelle. Click here to sign up.
Full program enrollees will receive a signed copy of King: A Life (2023) by keynote speaker Jonathan Eig. Additional signed copies will be available for purchase at the event.
Gently used coats and books for any age group will be accepted for donation to other local nonprofits.
The celebration begins with keynote speaker, Jonathan Eig, in conversation with Lori Rotskoff from 1:00pm to 2:15pm. The celebration continues with three concurrent lectures from 2:30pm to 3:30pm from notable SAS instructors Nicholas Birns (Breakout Session One), Francis Morrone (Breakout Session Two), and Tey Meadow (Breakout Session Three). The day concludes with a Champagne Reception and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony from 3:30pm to 4:00pm.
Schedule of Events
1:00pm-2:15pm – Keynote: Jonathan Eig, King: A Life (2023)
Eig's latest New York Times bestseller, King: A Life, was long-listed for the 2023 National Book Award. Vividly written and exhaustively researched, the book is an intimate portrait of Martin Luther King, Jr., the courageous and often troubled preacher who demanded peaceful protest for his movement but was rarely at peace with himself. The acclaimed author will appear in conversation with Lori Rotskoff, cultural historian and moderator of many SAS book discussions. Informed by insatiable curiosity and formidable storytelling gifts, Eig will illuminate how he uncovered revelatory information about MLK and his complex relationships with the FBI, his wife and children, and fellow activists, as well as broader lessons learned while researching previous subjects, including Lou Gehrig, Muhammad Ali, and the visionary inventors of the birth control pill. He will also speak about upcoming theatrical, TV and film adaptations; Universal Studios has optioned the rights to King: A Life for a film by executive producer Steven Spielberg and producer/director Chris Rock. Time will be reserved for Q&A.
JONATHAN EIG has been praised by documentary filmmaker Ken Burns as a “master storyteller." He was born in Brooklyn, began his writing career at age 16 working for his hometown newspaper, the Rockland County Journal News, and graduated from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. He worked as a reporter for the New Orleans Times-Picayune, the Dallas Morning News, Chicago Magazine, and the Wall Street Journal and as a feature writer for the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, Chicago Magazine, and other publications. He has authored six books, including his most recent King: A Life. His previous book, Ali: A Life, won a 2018 PEN America Literary Award and was a finalist for the Mark Lynton History Prize. Eig's first book, Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig, reached No. 10 on the New York Times bestseller list and won the Casey Award. He has appeared on the Today Show, NPR's Fresh Air, and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. But his greatest claim to fame, according to his parents, is that his name once appeared in a Jeopardy question (which was solved correctly for $200). He lives in Chicago with his wife and children and shares office space with the laundry machines.
LORI ROTSKOFF is a cultural historian, writer, and educator committed to adult education. She is the author/co-editor of two books and the recipient of grants from the American Historical Association and the Radcliffe Institute.
2:30pm-3:30pm – Breakout Session One: American Protest Music in Literary and Cultural Contexts
Political protests influenced the lyrics and literature at the time of Scarsdale Adult School’s founding. Learn about and listen to American protest music from the 1930s to 1950s, including the works of Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, and Billie Holiday. Contextualize the music scene within the broader currents in and problems of American literary culture.
NICHOLAS BIRNS is an adjunct instructor at NYU and is the author of many books and articles on modern world literature. He has written on Moby-Dick and published in Leviathan: A Journal of Melville Studies.
2:30pm-3:30pm – Breakout Session Two: New York Art Scene Circa 1938
Eight-five years ago, émigré artists were fleeing Europe to settle in New York, the Federal Art Project sponsored by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) under the New Deal was underway, and new art museums and galleries were beginning to populate the city’s landscape. Explore the influence on the New York art scene of Fernand Léger, George Grosz, Pavel Tchelitchew, Hans Hofmann, and Salvador Dalí, and American artists Reginald Marsh, Edward Hopper, Jackson Pollock, Stuart Davis, and others. Step back in time to view scenes from and learn the origins of the now famous Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Downtown Gallery, the Julien Levy Gallery, and more. Vintage photographs illustrate the thoroughly researched narration of the city’s rich cultural history.
FRANCIS MORRONE is an architectural historian and writer and the author of eleven books, including, with Robin Lynn, Guide to New York City Urban Landscapes (W.W. Norton, 2013) and, with Henry Hope Reed, The New York Public Library: The Architecture and Decoration of the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building (W.W. Norton, 2011), as well as architectural guidebooks to Philadelphia and to Brooklyn. He was an art and architecture critic for the New York Sun for six and a half years, and his writings appear in such publications as the Wall Street Journal, the New Criterion, City Journal, and Humanities. He received the Excellence in Teaching Award from NYU School of Professional Studies, and the Landmarks Lion Award of the Historic Districts Council. Travel and Leisure magazine named him one of the 13 best tour guides in the world.
2:30pm-3:30pm – Breakout Session Three: Transgender Kids Today
Something about gender is changing. From courtrooms to classrooms, discussions about transgender children seem to be everywhere. Why do some children have strong gender identities that differ from what others expect? What is fueling the current controversy? What should trans children be able to do? What can they really know about themselves? Explore the current political moment and the families and children it impacts. Audience questions about trans youth and their lives will help guide the discussion.
TEY MEADOW is an Associate Professor of Sociology at Columbia University, where she conducts research on contemporary issues related to gender and sexuality and teaches courses to undergraduates and PhD students on gender and sexuality, queer theory, qualitative methodology, law, and the analytics of risk and uncertainty. She is the author of Trans Kids: Being Gendered in the Twenty-First Century (University of California Press, 2018) and the co-editor of Other, Please Specify: Queer Methods in Sociology (University of California Press, 2018). Meadow’s published works appear in academic journals and focus on a broad range of issues, including the emergence of the transgender child as a social category, the international politics of family diversity, the creation and maintenance of legal gender classifications, and the ways individuals negotiate risk in intimate relationships.
3:30pm-4:00pm – Champagne Reception and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
Our celebration will end with a champagne reception and, of course, there will be cake! Raise a toast for the debut of a figurative SAS Hall of Fame to honor those whose efforts have contributed to SAS’s success and longevity. The inaugural inductees will be Alfred Hunt and Harriet Langsam Sobol. These two long standing teachers have been engaging students and developing a devoted following for years at SAS, with Hunt leading history and current events courses and Sobol organizing writing and book discussion classes. Jonathan Cobert, who provides the live entertainment in the popular Movement to Music classes, will be performing.