Events and Programs
Annapolis Executive Seminars
2013-2014 Overview and Theme
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Executive Seminars Overview
St. John's College Executive Seminars aim to address fundamental questions of the human condition through a close reading and discussion of timeless great works of literature, philosophy, and political discourse. Faculty members, called tutors, meet with about 20 participants once a month for 90 minutes to discuss one of these enduring texts. The seminar discussion is exploratory; no previous knowledge of the author, text, or subject is required and participants refer only to books the group has read together. The tutors do not set an agenda of topics to be covered.
At the college, we believe that real learning happens when seminar participants take responsibility for understanding these beautiful but difficult works through discussion with others. In such discussion participants come to a deeper understanding of the reading and of the issues it raises. One of the tutors begins each session with a question that has no simple answer.
The character and course of the conversation are determined by the demands of the text and by the willingness of all members of the seminar to state their opinions clearly and reasonably. Such a discussion is not a debate: challenging the ideas of others or offering alternative thinking is encouraged, with insight as the goal.
For twenty years the college has offered seminars for professionals and executives in a number of cities. These seminars are specially structured to suit the needs of busy people who, immersed in careers and families, value serious conversation with their peers about ideas that have challenged humankind through the ages.
2013-2014 Theme: Eros and the Imagination
To understand ourselves as human beings, we need to ask about the nature of emotion and the role it plays in our lives. Love, or eros, as the Greeks called it, may be the most fundamental and influential of the emotions. When eros fills the soul, with it may come joy, delight, ecstasy, torment, obsession, rage, violence, and destruction. Does love conquer all? Does love have reasons that reason cannot comprehend? Is love a god, from God, or is it mere madness? Can we love and do what we will, or are we consumed? In this year’s seminar series, we look to imaginative texts from ancient Greece to the American south to deepen our understanding of this strange and powerful presence.
For more information, contact:
Phone: 410-295-5544 Fax: 410-295-6935
St. John's College
P.O. Box 2800
Annapolis, MD 21404
60 College Avenue
Annapolis, MD 21401