Newport/Derby/Stanstead Lecture Series

Spring 2017

Lectures are scheduled for Wednesdays beginning promptly at 1:00 p.m. Lectures will be in the Conference Room at the Hebard State Office Building 2nd Floor, 100 Main Street in Newport, VT. Site is handicap accessible with ample parking.


Wednesday 22 March 2017
James K. Oliver: Into Trump’s World — the Launch

President Donald Trump’s administration is now two-thirds of the way through its “First 100 Days.” Obviously, it is very early to attempt a definitive assessment of Trump’s foreign policy. We can, however, examine the major assumptions, emerging policy frameworks and the institutional balance taking shape in the Trump’s foreign and national security policy administration. Finally, we shall take note of the Trump administration’s early relationship with Congress.


Wednesday 29 March 2017
Robert Chadwick: Prehistoric Origins of Religion

What does the archaeological evidence tell us about early human spiritual and religious beliefs? By examining human skeletal remains, burial goods, and Ice Age cave paintings in Europe, and associated artifacts from Africa and the Middle East, this illustrated talk will explore the initial forms of human spirituality, and trace its evolution through the early stages of civilization in Egypt and Mesopotamia.


Wednesday 5 April 2017
Allen Yale: Salem City – a Counterfactual History

In the centennial year of the founding of Newport City, this talk looks at the many boundary changes of neighboring Derby, and suggests that a legislative decision in 1797 might have resulted in a separate city not being formed in 1917. If that had been, it might then have been known as Salem City.


Wednesday 12 April 2017
Charles Colby: William Shakespeare: The Mystery of the Mask and What’s Behind It

Many of us know of Shakespeare as the writer from Stratford-upon-Avon who came to London. However, as the Encyclopedia Britannica intimates, there is another very different story of Shakespeare, that of a brilliant Elizabethan courtier and poet, who wrote and produced entertainments and plays for the Queen and her court. Doomed to write anonymously, he adopted the pen-name William Shakespeare. His life reads like a thriller, winding its way from climax to denouement, and eventually the obliteration of his name. This story is based on fascinating and compelling evidence found in official documents, personal letters, the writing of contemporary authors, and the plays themselves. We will have an in-depth look at one of the plays to illustrate how the author was obliged to hide what he wanted posterity to understand, and consequently what we should look for if we are to understand his meaning, his devilish humour, his nonsense and wit.


Wednesday 19 April 2017
Jack Eby: My Neighbour Totoro: An introduction to Japanese anime master Hiyao Miyazaki, and his musical partner Joe Hisaishi

My Neighbour Totoro is one of the best-loved children’s classic movies directed by Hiyao Miyazaki, most famous for his Oscar-winning masterpiece Spirited Away. Totoro is a gentle and sympathetic portrait of childhood. Miyazaki subtly mixes the real-life strain of two young children whose mother is ill in hospital with a magical world that sustains them through the struggle. Miyazaki’s long-time collaborator Joe Hisaishi captures these two worlds with a superb sound-track that mixes Japanese and western musical traditions.


Wednesday 26 April 2017
Michael Atkinson: The Exciting Vision of Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman has a great deal to tell us about what “ordinary life” has to offer – an exciting depth which can energize our every experience. His poetry is written in the language of ordinary people. His message is for everyone. Join us as we explore the vision of this remarkable American writer.


Wednesday 3 May 2017
Richard Morris: Backyard Birding in Stanstead and the Surrounding Area

Richard Morris will present a talk and slide show on the local bird population as recorded in the annual Audubon bird count in Stanstead, Ogden and Georgeville. It will be illustrated by photographic sightings. He will discuss which birds can expected to be sighted in the area from one season to another and how some locations differ from others.


Wednesday 10 May 2017
Daniel Miller: “This Is Not Your Grandfather’s Al Qaeda”: The Origins, Development, Vision and Future Trajectory of ISIS

Since its genesis during the Iraq War as a branch of Al Qaeda, the now-independent Islamist group ISIS (AKA the Islamic State/ISIL/Daesh) has supplanted its parent organization as the world’s greatest terrorist threat. This talk will discuss the rise of ISIS, the establishment of its so-called “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria, its apocalyptic vision, and trajectory going forward.


Wednesday 17 May 2017
Michel Forest: Frederick Simpson Coburn – 1871-1960

A native of Upper Melbourne in the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Frederick Simpson Coburn was a celebrated Canadian artist in his time. Having studied in some of the most prestigious art schools of American and Europe around the turn of the 20th Century, he was a masterful illustrator who became a successful and much sought-after painter of Canadian landscapes. He is particularly well remembered for his scenes where contrasting pairs of horses or oxen can be seen pulling timber laden sleds along snow covered roads and hills. We will discuss how success, time and changing Quebec politics have shaped his present place in Canadian art history.


Wednesday 24 May 2017
Joe Sherman: In Pursuit of My Car-Loving Ancestor, The First Guy to Drive Around the World

Joe Sherman’s ancestor Charles Jasper Glidden was the “Ulysses of the Motor Car.” Between 1903 and 1908, he drove about 46,000 miles through 39 countries. He became the first person to drive around the world by car. This talk will illustrate his odyssey. With his son Andrew, Joe Sherman retraced the route in 2003. They channeled their long-dead forebear’s adventure, got international attention, and three on-the-road interviews for Vermont Public Radio


Membership Information

Membership dues will support the development of the Institute’s future programs, which are shaped by the interests of our members. Payment of membership dues entitles subscribers to attend all 10 sessions in Newport as well as at the seven other Osher sites in Vermont during the Spring 2016 semester. Your active membership also entitles you to the discounted member rate for the new OLLI program on the UVM campus. For membership, complete the form on the site brochure and send with your check for $40 USD (individual) or $70 USD (couple). Any two people who sign up for the semester as a team are considered a couple. Non-members may attend individual sessions for $5 per session.

For membership, complete the form on the site brochure or click on this membership form. Mail your payment to (payable to “The University of Vermont”):

UVM OLLI Registration Office
460 South Prospect Street
Burlington, VT 05401

CONTACT MEMBERS (for information on the Osher Institute or the upcoming semesters lectures.)

John Logan 819-876-5026
Ann Montgomery 819-876-7837
Marvelene & Keith Richards 802-334-1254
Christine Gautier 819-843-4292
Annemarie Schadinger 802-334-0544
Dorothy Willard 802-754-2366
Suzi Dix 819-838-5131
Page Fairchild 802-843-6335

Become a member today!

Membership in the Newport Osher Lifelong Learning Institute entitles members to attend programs in other Osher Institutes established in seven other locations throughout Vermont, as well as EEE-Burlington (Elder Education Enrichment). Your active OLLI membership also entitles you to the discounted member rate for the OLLI on UVM campus programs. Simply present your membership card during the corresponding semester.

Special thank you to our community contributors:

  • Community National Bank
  • CCV – Newport
  • Goodrich Memorial Library
  • Green Mountain Coffee
  • Newport Natural Market & Cafe
  • NEK-TV
  • Vista

For a complete listing of all programs, see our listing in a pdf format.

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