Tuesday Courses: Registration

N.B.: Course times, dates and locations listed are subject to change. Should this occur it is in order to obtain the best possible classroom space for members. Thank you for your flexibility, understanding and patience.

W20-12 Shaw Festival Preview

These spirited lectures will enrich your theatregoing experience. Talks on selected plays being offered this season at the Shaw Festival will be spiced with lively anecdotes, readings, short scene presentations, discussions, and background information on authors and theatre history. Enjoy coffee, tea, and cookies along with informal discussion during the halftime break. List of plays in order of presentation: Shaw’s provocative Devil’s Disciple; J.M. Synge’s poignant Playboy of the Western World; Alice Childress’ scathing comedy, Trouble in the Mind; the ageless epic Mahabharata; Eugene O’Neill’s Desire Under the Elms; and Sondheim/Weider’s musical revue about attempts on presidents, Assassins.

Vrenia Ivonoffski is founding artistic director of ACT II STUDIO and professor of acting at George Brown Theatre School. She has over 30 directing credits, has written 14 produced plays. and has taught at Ryerson Theatre School, University of Guelph and Sheridan College. She is a member of Theatre Ontario’s Talent Bank, has won Ryerson’s GREET teaching award (2002), and her show, Leacock Live! was Patron’s Pick at the 2010 Toronto Fringe Festival. She is a past president of the Toronto Association of Acting Studios (TAAS) and received the 2014 Maggie Bassett Award by Theatre Ontario for her contribution to theatre in Ontario.

Limited to 30 participants

Dates: Mar.24 – Apr.14 (4 sessions)
Time: Tuesdays,
10 a.m. – 12 p.m.*
Location: VIC502
Fee: $85
Instructor: Vrenia Ivonoffski
*Please note starting and ending times

W20-13 Studies in the History of Technology NEW

We live in the knowledge-based economy, the origins of which are rooted in the path taken by advances of science since the Age of Enlightenment. This course looks at the basic concepts and principles underlying the march of technology, as an advancement of science and as the driver of economic expansion. The first session commences with the concepts, historical origin, and development of the principles and terminology of intellectual property, particularly patent law, over the last 800 years. In the second and third sessions we will look at the development of the printing press and advances in navigational abilities that have had profound consequences. These technological advances changed the world. In the last session we will look at developments in the cyber world to examine issues of the collection, use, and abuse of big data, privacy, theft of trade secrets, examples of the spread of false information and other problems that have arisen in our times.  It will also touch on new regulatory regimes that attempt to address a number of these known problems.

This is a lecture course with some time for questions and discussion. An electronic reading list will be distributed to interested participants.

Ken Bousfield is a Patent Lawyer (University of Toronto) and Professional Engineer (Mech. Eng., U of W). He has practised patent law for 25 years. He has significant experience with railroad equipment and previously worked for an aircraft manufacturer.

Limited to 40 participants

Dates: Jan.28 – Feb.18 (4 sessions)
Time: Tuesdays, 10:10 – 11:50 a.m.
Fee: $45
: Ken Bousfield

W20-14 What’s Up Doc? Your Health and the Healthcare System

Most of us feel fortunate to have our universal healthcare system in Ontario. But it is not perfect – it never was and never will be. How to interact successfully within this system and with your family doctor should be of utmost importance to you. This course will give you insight into many aspects of our healthcare system, including its history and organization, how your family doctor thinks, the role of preventive medicine, studies, guidelines, regulations, and select medical conditions and legends, as well as some controversies, and the risks and benefits of our myriad of pills and tests. Having taken the course, each participant will be in a better position to interact with their doctor and weigh the advice he or she dispenses. Hopefully you will end up better able to navigate our system as a more informed and critical patient. Since we have all been personally involved with our healthcare system and are all “experts” in our own way, class participation is greatly encouraged.

This course is a series of lectures, case presentations, crosswords and questionnaires, with ample opportunity for discussion.

Please note that this course was previously offered at LIFE in the 2019 spring term.

Dr. Mark Wise recently retired from a 40-year career as a family doctor in Toronto. During that time, he worked in private practice, emergency departments, seniors’ residences, tropical and travel medicine clinics and overseas in lesser developed countries. He spent 15 years as the medical advisor to CUSO-VSO and several other NGOs. He continues to study and teach.

Limited to 40 participants

Dates: Jan.28 – Mar.3 (6 sessions)
Time: Tuesdays, 10:10 – 11:50 a.m.
Fee: $55

Location: Chelsea - Monarch
: Dr. Mark Wise

W20-15 World Religions  NEW 

Humans have long speculated about their origins, wondered about their relationship with the world around them, and pondered the meaning of life. Different answers to these issues have been offered by the world’s religions. In this course, we examine the founding narratives and figures, beliefs, development, understanding of life and death, ethics, and rituals of seven major religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Daoism, Confucianism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam). The course provides an opportunity to explore these religious traditions and illustrates the diversity of world religions.

Participants will learn from an expert in the subject in a series of illustrated lectures.

Rahim Samnani is an instructor at McMaster University, where he is currently completing his PhD in early Islam and early Christianity. His research focuses on the lives of Jesus and Muhammad, examining the New Testament and the Qur’an, as well as other available sources that depict their lives. Having over five years of teaching experience at Queen’s University and McMaster University, Rahim’s teaching interests include world religions, Islamic thought and history, the Crusades, and early Christianity. 

Limited to 80 participants

Dates: Jan.28 – Mar.17 (8 sessions)
10:10 – 11:50 a.m.
Fee: $95

Location: VIC203
Instructor: Rahim Samnani

W20-16 Book Talk

Come and join the discussion about books in this lively, thought-provoking group where we explore, debate, and enjoy an assortment of contemporary novels and biographies. You will be notified of the first book once you have enrolled in the course. Books for the remaining classes will be decided by the group at the first meeting and presented by members at each subsequent meeting. Participants are encouraged to bring their own book suggestions. 

This class involves participant presentations and lively discussion. 

Deborah WingatePatricia O’Sullivan, and Lindy Small are pleased to moderate this longstanding group for LIFE. Deborah and Patricia are retired librarians, and Lindy is a retired educator. They enjoy books of all types and have been avid readers since childhood.
Limited to 16 participants

Dates: Feb. 11, 25 and Mar. 10, 24 (4 sessions)
Time: Tuesdays, 12:10 – 1:50 p.m.
Fee: $45
Location: POD361
Lindy Small, Deborah Wingate, and Patricia O’Sullivan

W20-17 Fabulous Women Artists You May Never Have Heard Of  NEW

While the work and lives of female artists like Frida Kahlo, Helen Frankenthaler, and Annie Leibovitz have received lots of well-deserved attention, it’s time to open ourselves up to the offerings of other exciting female artists. This course will delve into some of the underdiscussed female artists like Nona Faustine, Annie Wang, Ellen Gallagher, Ness Lee, Amy Sherald, Mikalene Thomas and more. This course may include at least one class in which we will venture out to experience female-created art and meet its creators or a talk from a local female artist.

This course is a combination of lecture, film clips and discussion, taught by an expert.

Rosalin Krieger earned a master’s degree in Sociology and Equity Studies at Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, and is a global lecturer, academic coach, writing instructor, editor, writer, visual artist, and food cultural guide based in Toronto.

Limited to 60 participants

Dates: Jan.28 – Mar.17 (8 sessions)
Time: Tuesdays, 12:10 – 1:50 p.m.
Fee: $95
Location: KHW061
Instructor: Rosalin Krieger

W20-18 Lights! Camera! Music! - Silent Movies Were Never Silent NEW

Professional musician/musicologist Jordan Klapman introduces, discusses and accompanies a remarkable collection of classic film comedies, dramas, and scenes made prior to the sound era. Learn about the fascinating lives of the famous pioneers of American cinema, including Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd and several Canadians: Quebec-born Mack Sennett, Coburg’s Marie Dressler, Toronto-born Mary Pickford, and many other legends of the early silver screen.

This course will include lectures, high-quality video film restorations, and live musical accompaniment by Jordan Klapman.

Jordan Klapman
is a professional pianist, accompanist, bandleader, music director, composer, and music educator. Since 2005 he has presented unique popular musical lecture series throughout the GTA and beyond, including over 16 music history courses at Ryerson’s LIFE Institute since 2012.

Limited to 60 participants

Dates: Jan.28 – Mar.17 (8 sessions)
Time: Tuesdays, 12:10 – 1:50 p.m.
Fee: $95
Location: Chelsea - Monarch
Instructor: Jordan Klapman

W20-19 Organizing, Managing, and Enhancing Your Photographs

This course is for those people who want to better organize and manage their digital photographs and learn basic photo enhancement and editing techniques. In addition, the course will introduce various photo-sharing techniques so that you can share your photos with friends and family. The course will utilize photo enhancement and organizing programs that either come with your computer or can be downloaded free from the internet.

Prerequisite: For PC users with a working knowledge of computer basics.  Students are encouraged to bring their own computer to class, but it is not necessary.

Harold Hutner is a life-long photography buff who has taught photography courses at LIFE for several years and enjoys helping others learn how to manage their digital photographs.

Limited to 4 participants

Dates: March 3 - 24 (4 sessions)
Time: Tuesdays,
12:10 – 1:50 p.m.
Fee: $45
Location: VIC607A
Instructor: Harold Hutner

W20-20 Do People Deserve Second Chances? The Value of Forgiveness NEW

Sweet mercy is nobility’s true badge.
William Shakespeare

This course will explore the idea of forgiveness to discover why it is difficult and under what conditions it should be granted. Drawing from key thinkers within diverse religious and secular traditions, such as Desmond Tutu, Martha Nussbaum, Martin Luther King Jr., and Martin Buber, we first will examine what is involved in genuine forgiveness – on the part of both the forgiver and forgiven – so that the forgiven are allowed to make up for the harm or injury they have caused others, while reintegrating into the community from which they’ve been ostracized. We’ll ask what kind of responsibility a wrongdoer must take before forgiveness is possible and whether some acts, whether or not sanctioned by law, are beyond forgiveness. We’ll examine the goal of forgiveness from both the individual and community standpoint and how forgiveness helps rebuild trust. Finally, we’ll consider to what extent our individualistic society can be a forgiving one and which personal and collective virtues can be developed in this process. Participants may choose to think about and discuss wrongs committed against them and whether and how they are prepared to forgive those responsible; conversely, they may also choose to remember wrongs they have committed and what it means to forgive themselves.

Participants will learn from an expert in the field through a series of illustrated lectures and discussions. A list of selected readings for the course will be distributed on the first day of class. In addition, handouts will be provided throughout the course to explore the virtues and challenges of real-life cases of forgiveness.

Dr. Paul Salvatori, PhD from the University of Ottawa (Philosophy), is a philosopher, educator, and journalist. He is a regular contributor to NOW Magazine and other publications, writing on issues of community and social justice. He has also taught in the liberal arts, social science and humanities at both the university and junior college levels. His interest in forgiveness stems from a concern about the growing “culture of outrage”, where many are prone to condemn wrongdoers rather than ever forgive them. Aside from his academic work, Paul is a reggae artist who incorporates themes of love and forgiveness in his music. 

Limited to 30 participants

Jan. 28 – Mar. 3 (6 sessions)      
Time: Tuesdays, 12:10 – 1:50 p.m.
Fee:  $55
Location: EPH207
Instructor: Dr. Paul Salvatori

W20-21 Major Conflicts in the Post World War II Era NEW

Since the end of World War II, by comparison, the world has experienced relative stability. Yet major regional conflicts and wars have ensued that still threaten world peace and stability. This course examines the political history of some of the major lingering conflicts of the post-war 20th century right up to the present. These include the India-Pakistan dispute over Kashmir, the breakup of Yugoslavia, the Israeli-Arab/Palestinian conflict, the Iraq War, the Syrian Civil War, the rise of Islamic Jihad, and more. The course chronicles the origins of these modern-day conflicts, their tragic consequences, and the successful and often failing efforts for their peaceful resolution.

This is a lecture course led by an expert in the field.

Amnon Zohar is a retired hi-tech entrepreneur. Born and educated in Israel, he is a graduate of the Israeli Military Academy for Computer Sciences. Amnon studied Political Science at York University and International Relations at Tel-Aviv University. He has offered several courses at LIFE on the Middle East, football (soccer), and leadership.

Limited to 60 participants

Dates: Jan.28 – Mar.17 (8 sessions)
Time: Tuesdays, 2:10 – 3:50 p.m.
Fee: $95
Location: Chelsea - Monarch
Amnon Zohar

W20-22 Makers and Shakers of the 19th Century France NEW

Calling all history and biography fans and lovers of active learning! Join us to study the history of France from Napoleon I’s abdication in 1814 to the outbreak of the First World War 100 years later. During this turbulent period, the country saw repeated violent uprisings as it moved haltingly from autocratic government to a democratic republic, while Paris served as the world’s cultural capital. We’ll learn about such dramatic events as the Revolutions of 1830 and 1848, the Commune of 1871, and the Dreyfus Affair of the 1890s through examining the lives of notable figures from the realms of politics, literature, art, music, entertainment, and science and technology. The list of figures to choose from will include Napoleon III, Victor Hugo, Hector Berlioz, Claude Monet, Sarah Bernhardt, Louis Pasteur – and two dozen more.

This course will employ LIFE’s study group format. Each class member will research, prepare, and make a 20- to 25-minute presentation on an historical figure of their choice, based on reading a biography. There will also be two guest presentations. All presentations will be followed by questions and group discussion with the instructors serving as content consultants.

Frank Nicholson, PhD (history), is a retired civil servant and association executive and long-time Francophile and history addict, who has travelled widely in France and co-moderated several history-related courses at another later-life learning organization before joining LIFE.

Randal Holloway is a retired provincial public servant whose hobbies include scuba-diving and amateur astronomy. Randal has been involved in later-life learning for several years and moderated a study group course on 19th-century France at another later-life learning organization before joining LIFE.

Limited to 16 participants

Dates: Feb.4 – Mar.31 (8 sessions, no class Mar.10)
Time: Tuesdays, 2:10 – 3:50 p.m.
Fee: $65
Location: KHW061
Instructors: Frank Nicholson and Randal Holloway


Accessibility: The LIFE Institute is committed to accessibility for persons with disabilities. Please contact the office 2 weeks in advance of the first class if you have any particular accommodation requirements.