Biography & Autobiography Programs
The Screenwriter and the Superstar: Frances Marion, Mary Pickford, and The Girls in the Picture

Author Melanie Benjamin discusses her new novel, The Girls in the Picture, the story of the friendship and creative partnership between two of Hollywood’s earliest female legends, screenwriter Frances Marion and silent-movie superstar Mary Pickford.

Date
Monday, January 22, 2018 - 6:45 p.m.
Chris Matthews on Bobby Kennedy’s Indomitable Spirit

MSNBC’s Hardball anchor Chris Matthews shares an in-depth look at Robert F. Kennedy, a man who was both a pragmatic politician and an idealist who was an inspiration to millions.

Date
Wednesday, January 24, 2018 - 7:00 p.m.
Gauguin: Artist as Alchemist

Gloria Groom of the Art Institute of Chicago examines Gauguin’s radically creative fascination with craft and decorative arts, as reflected in a major new exhibition mounted by the museum. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)

Date
Thursday, January 25, 2018 - 6:45 p.m.
Celebrating Brahms: The Man, His Music, and His Legacy
6-Session Daytime Course

Saul Lilienstein examines Brahms’ enduring influence and the breadth of his extraordinary output—from symphonies, concertos, and overtures to chamber music, songs, and choral music—in a series of programs highlighted by musical and DVD recordings.

Date
Tuesday, January 30 to March 6, 2018 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
The Making of a Monarch: English Kings, Queens, and Their Mums

Tudor and Renaissance scholar Carol Ann Lloyd Stanger examines the fascinating relationships of kings and queens and their mothers from the 12th century to today, illustrating that although they didn’t hold official public positions, the women who rocked the royal cradle changed the course of English history.

Date
Saturday, February 3, 2018 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.
Ulysses S. Grant: The Embattled President

President Ulysses S. Grant was as controversial in politics as he was in the military. Historian Charles W. Calhoun offers a fresh look at this oft-criticized presidency and offers insight into how Grant navigated another treacherous battleground.

Date
Thursday, February 8, 2018 - 6:45 p.m.
Alexander Hamilton: A Washington Presence
All-Day Tour

Alexander Hamilton always called New York home, but his image and influence is found all around Washington. Join local historian Kathleen Bashian and scholar Denver Brunsman on a tour of sites that reflect the vision and leadership of this Founding Father—well before he was reinvented as a Broadway musical phenomenon.

Date
Friday, February 9, 2018 - 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
The Lives of Benjamin Franklin

Historian Richard Bell explores aspects of the public and private life of America’s favorite Founding Father, tackling his experiences as writer and printer, inventor and philanthropist, husband and father, and reluctant revolutionary.

Date
Saturday, February 10, 2018 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.
Wallis in Love: Andrew Morton on the Untold Life of the Duchess of Windsor

Wallis Simpson—the infamous “woman I love” for whom Edward VIII abdicated his throne—continues to fascinate us. Historical biographer Andrew Morton draws on his new book to offer insights into the personality and motivations of a complex and controversial American who changed the course of the monarchy.

Date
Tuesday, February 20, 2018 - 6:45 p.m.
Alexander Hamilton: A Washington Presence
All-Day Tour

Alexander Hamilton always called New York home, but his image and influence is found all around Washington. Join local historian Kathleen Bashian and scholar Denver Brunsman on a tour of sites that reflect the vision and leadership of this Founding Father—well before he was reinvented as a Broadway musical phenomenon.

Date
Friday, February 23, 2018 - 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
The Conservative Legacy of William F. Buckley Jr.

The political philosophy—and personality—of William F. Buckley Jr. were significant forces in shaping a uniquely American conservatism that reached its apex of influence in the election of Ronald Reagan. Presidential historian Alvin Felzenberg considers what Buckley’s movement achieved and what may befall it in the age of Trump.

Date
Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 6:45 p.m.
Savonarola: The Moral Dictator of Florence

How could a lowly Florentine preacher almost singlehandedly overthrow the mighty Medici family at the height of the Renaissance? Historian Janna Bianchini traces how the fiery Girolamo Savonarola upended the civic and cultural norms of a great city and installed himself as the head of a ruthless, ruling theocracy.

Date
Wednesday, March 21, 2018 - 6:45 p.m.
Caravaggio: Theater and Light

Art historian Nigel McGilchrist follows Caravaggio’s life and development as a painter, and traces his indelible influence on artists including Goya, Bernini, Rembrandt, and Vermeer. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)

Date
Thursday, March 22, 2018 - 6:45 p.m.
Grant Wood: Beyond American Gothic

A new exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art reveals Grant Wood as a complex, sophisticated artist whose image as a farmer-painter was as mythical as the fables he depicted in his art. Sarah Humphreville, senior curatorial assistant at the museum offers an overview of the exhibition and insights into lesser-known aspects of Wood’s life and career. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)

Date
Wednesday, March 28, 2018 - 6:45 p.m.