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13 Results

  • A Descent Into Dante’s Inferno: An Allegorical Journey, Then & Now

    It’s the year of Dante! 2021 marks the 700th anniversary of the death of the father of the Italian language and author of The Divine Comedy, a magnificent poem consisting of 14,233 hendecasyllabic verses written in terza rima, which was invented by Dante (aba, bcb, cdc…). La divina commedia profoundly influenced the entire Western culture, from Botticelli, Blake, and Dalí, to Milton, T. S. Eliot, and Joyce, among others. The last grand work of the Middle Ages, it is also a harbinger of the Renaissance and Humanism. We will examine Dante’s Inferno, the first canticle of The Divine Comedy, through the historical and literary point of view as we read some of its most poignant verses in Italian and English. Recommended for purchase and used in class is Robert M. Torrance’s Dante’s Inferno, A New Translation in Terza Rima, Xlibris, 2011. Photo: Dante shown holding a copy of the Divine Comedy, next to the entrance to Hell, the seven terraces of Mount Purgatory and the city of Florence, with the spheres of Heaven above, in Domenico di Michelino’s 1465 fresco. Source: Wikipedia
  • African Music & Culture: An Interactive Performance

    Featuring artists, Myra Maimoh, Tausi Zaina, JJ Koso, and more. Explore the incredible and diverse music from three different countries in Africa at this live, interactive concert experience. Showcasing original music, spoken word, art, and real life stories by artists from Cameroon, Kenya, and Liberia, this unique event is not only entertaining, but also offers an opportunity to get fully immersed in Africa’s cultural diversity. Interact with the artists and ask questions in a judgment free environment. Presented by an organization whose mission it is to empower immigrants with ties to Africa, employing them to use and share their talents to help bridge the cultural divide and fully participate in and contribute to a growing economy.
  • An Activist's Guide to Town Government

    Explore the ins and outs of Arlington’s town government and learn how you can get involved and make a difference. We’ll discuss what happens in daily operations and how Arlington’s legislative branch, Town Meeting, works. Learn where the levers of power are, and how to apply pressure to them to make a change. Understand the months of decision-making that create our town budget, as well as how and when the public can influence the process. Whether you are interested in becoming a Town Meeting Member, getting involved in one of Arlington’s many committees, or simply want to clarify how your local government works, this class will demystify the inner workings of your town and demonstrate how town government is truly open to all who want to participate in it.
  • Constructive Conversations Across Political Differences (Online)

    Please note this class will be held online. Political differences can damage relationships—but it doesn't have to be this way. How do we maintain or rebuild respect with family, friends, and colleagues who hold very different views from ours? Join this interactive workshop to learn useful models of engaging in difficult conversations. In a safe space, we’ll go over a variety of scenarios and have plenty of time to practice and gain effective skills for these encounters. Topics will include why rapport might be broken and how to build it back up, how to defuse tension and change the tone, and how to identify and avoid trigger words. We’ll also talk about moral foundations and how they can differ between political parties, and learn about groups that are working to repair relationships across the political divide.
  • DNA & Genealogy

    Ancestry Verification Using DNA results to build a family tree can be daunting. For folks who have one (or more) DNA tests and want to use their matches to find birth parents or verify ancestors, this class will get you started. Matches will be sorted to find common ancestors. Tree building from matches to common ancestors and back from those common ancestors to you (and unknown birth parents or known ancestors you want to verify) will be demonstrated and practiced. DNA tests and matches on ancestry.com and or 23andMe.com, with free uploads for more matches to ftdna.com, myheritage.com, and gedmatch.com will be reviewed. Leave with a plan to get to your answers. Advanced Matching Techniques For those who have completed a basic review of matches and want to get more from their DNA results. There is a wealth of information in DNA match share clusters. Even more information on how you are related to matches and ancestors can be found by comparing segments. We’ll use the free “DNA Painter” app as one tool to visualize shared segments and research which ancestor might be the origin of segments. This class will demonstrate and provide practice time using tools that can help you become a “DNA expert.”
  • Extended Reality Technology

    Drop into an alternate reality as you explore immersive technologies that are revolutionizing the way people learn and interact with each other. Extended Reality (XR) is a term that encompasses Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, and Mixed Reality. This workshop will give an overview of some of the latest developments in XR technologies and give you the opportunity for hands-on experimentation with AR via iPads, VR via the Oculus Quest 2, and MR via the Microsoft Hololens.
  • Local Efforts Towards Zero Carbon Homes

    Moderator: Amos Meeks, PhD, Precinct 3 Town Meeting Member and previous co-chair of Sustainable Arlington Panelists (All Arlington Residents): Tom Ehbrecht, Sustainable Arlington Scott Samenfeld, HeatSmart, Menotomy Weatherization Program Participant Ezekiel Wheeler, Business and home solar user Seth Federspiel, Climate Program Manager, City of Cambridge Community Development Department Coralie Cooper, Arlington’s Clean Energy Future Committee, Arlington Mothers Out Front Meet Arlington residents and business owners who have taken steps to making their homes emit less carbon dioxide. With ample time to ask questions of these experienced and knowledgeable neighbors, learn how they have switched their heating, cooling, and cooking systems away from fossil fuels through new installations and assistance from various local organizations. Hear firsthand how an electrified home can become carbon free and stop emitting greenhouse gases when combined with opting for up to 100% renewable electricity. In many cases, the efficient systems and insulation solutions improve home comfort, can save money and, most importantly, help slow climate change.
  • Net Zero: Arlington‘s Effort to Eliminate Greenhouse Gas Emissions

    Ken Pruitt, Arlington’s Town Energy Manager Ryan Katofsky, Net Zero Action Plan The Town of Arlington is actively working to eliminate local greenhouse gas emissions across all sectors by 2050. Join two energy professionals who helped write Arlington’s first Net Zero Action Plan to learn what net zero means, why achieving it is a key part in responding to the climate crisis, and how electrification fits into the picture. Hear about the Town’s top priorities as it starts on the journey to net zero. Whether you rent or own your home, find out what you need to know and what you can do, from planning your home’s energy future to supporting local warrant articles and state legislation, and more.
  • Raising Antiracist Kids: A Parent Workshop Series

    This workshop series is for parents and other caregivers who want their children to be informed about race and committed to racial justice. In a supportive and cooperative environment, participants unpack the rationale for race-conscious parenting practices, explore models from Kids for Racial Justice’s children’s programs, and prepare for conversations with their own children. Participants are encouraged to try things out at home between sessions. Please note: While some of the topics are geared towards White parents/caregivers, the strategies discussed may be helpful for anyone. Folks of all racial backgrounds are welcome to participate in the workshop series. Session 1: The rationale for race-conscious parenting; developing a critical lens Session 2: Healthy racial identity development; White antiracist role models Session 3: Discussing racism with children Session 4: Taking action with children
  • Seize the New Normal

    Our potential is often diminished by fear, low self-esteem, and other limiting patterns—many of which have been exacerbated during the pandemic. In this interactive online class, renowned coach, CNN expert, bestselling author of Solemate and co-author of Speaking of Success with Jack Canfield and Stephen Covey, Lauren Mackler, reframes our “new normal” as an unprecedented wake-up call to living life more fully and authentically, and provides practical tools for overriding self-defeating patterns, liberating your potential, and creating a fulfilling life you love.
  • The Science of Happiness

    Do you ever find yourself wishing you could feel happier? Many of us do, believing it will happen when our lives change—when we find a new job, get a raise, or lose 10 pounds. However, experts are realizing that our well-being can be positively affected through changing the way we think. We shouldn’t rely on external circumstances for our happiness, but instead, work on what we have more control over—our thinking and our actions. While we may not be able to control the thoughts that pop into our head, we can learn to influence which ones we choose to dwell upon. We create and strengthen channels in the brain when we repeat certain thoughts. By observing our thoughts, we can consciously choose which pathways in the brain we want to strengthen (like water through a riverbed). If you can create new thinking habits, you can potentially improve your overall well-being. Learn more about this revolutionary concept and get practical tools for changing your mind and achieving a new, positive mindset.
  • White People Challenging Racism: Moving From Talk to Action

    While this five-session workshop welcomes participants of all identities, the focus is on racism as a system that White people created, maintain, and need to take immediate action to end. In this small online group setting you will examine the role of White people in dismantling racism, in becoming antiracist, and in building an equitable society. You will explore the impact of White privilege and how being unaware of that advantage helps perpetuate racism. Write about your own racial awareness journey. Enhance your understanding and capacity for action through discussion of short readings, videos, and other materials. Share everyday racism-related situations where you may not have effectively responded and, using role plays, work out effective ways to challenge racism. Develop a specific plan for challenging racism in the workplace, an organization, or in the community, while being encouraged to find other people in your life who can provide support and serve as an accountability partner in implementing your plan. Please note: Attendance at all sessions and completion of all assignments are required. Each participant will receive a phone call from one of the facilitators prior to the start of this program to review the commitment and class requirements.
  • Zero Waste: Goals for Home, Work & the Community

    “Zero waste” seems aspirational to some and pure gibberish to others. Schools, cities and individuals claim they have already achieved this incredible degree of waste reduction, but how do they define “zero”? How are they feeding themselves, for example? Given the amount of food packaging, food scraps, takeout containers, mailing envelopes, old paint, stained clothing, and ratty old furniture there is out there, is there really a way to eliminate these things from the waste stream? At the same time that we work to make personal goals, what can we accomplish at the community level? How can we better support each other to reduce waste? In this class we will investigate success stories from other parts of the country and the world. As Arlington plans updates to our trash and recycling programs, what should our goal be? What should we try, what should we avoid, and how close to zero waste can we aspire to get? Bring your ideas and questions, and be ready to be challenged to think differently.