Theater & Performance Studies
Wilde, Beckett, and the Split-Visions of Comedy: A Stanford Summer Theater Course
Offered in conjunction with Stanford Summer Theater (SST), this course will explore the great tradition of comedy in the theater. We will start with the romances of Euripides and the light and dark comedies of Shakespeare, then work our way toward the political comedies of George Bernard Shaw, the brilliant wit of Oscar Wilde, the strangely humorous vision of Samuel Beckett, and the classic works of Thornton Wilder. The course will be built around SST’s fifteenth season, “He’s Funny That Way: Wilde and Beckett.” Students will have the chance to attend special preview performances of SST’s productions of The Importance of Being Earnest and Happy Days, as well as a film series and symposium.
Vital Issues in American Foreign Policy
This course will examine the most pressing issues in American foreign policy as President Obama begins his second term. The Syrian civil war, the ongoing Arab Spring and the turmoil in Egypt, the economic challenges facing the Eurozone, the unending Israel- Palestine question, nuclear threats coming from Iran and North Korea, the drawdown in Afghanistan and its consequences, revived tensions with Russia, China’s bold assertion of power in Asia—alone and combined, these threats create challenges that American foreign policy makers will need to handle with extreme care.
What specific qualities of character, conscience, intellect, and leadership made Abraham Lincoln the most fascinating and consequential of our presidents? How did a man with only a few months of formal education become the greatest orator and writer in American political history? With what resources did he confront the gravest crisis in that history? This course will reassess Lincoln’s legacy and pay particular attention to his intellectual formation, his political skills, the Lincoln-Douglas debates, his conduct of the Civil War, and his evolving views about slavery.
The Power of Sleep
Thirty years ago, 80 percent of people reported feeling satisfied with the quality of their sleep. Today, only 20 percent feel that way. Something has gone wrong! What accounts for this change? What are its consequences? How can it be reversed? In this course, students will learn about the fundamentals of sleep physiology and the effects of sleep deprivation on health and performance, while also developing a program for increasing sleep quality. If you want to understand how sleep works, the consequences of inadequate sleep, or improve your sleep, this is the course for you.
Marketing Without Money: SEO and Social Media
Creating buzz is a critical goal for both startups and established companies. To do so, almost nothing compares to the power of free on the Internet. Established companies such as Whole Foods leverage free blogs, Twitter, and Facebook to deepen customer relationships, while small businesses such as law firms and nonprofits use search engine optimization to get to the top of critical Google searches. Whether you are an entrepreneur or a marketing manager, this hands-on course will teach you the secrets of marketing without money.
Like a Rolling Stone: The Life and Music of Bob Dylan
Widely acknowledged as the single most important singer-songwriter in the English-speaking world, Bob Dylan has been copied, covered, and analyzed more than any other living popular artist. In his more than fifty-year career, he has written and recorded over 450 original songs and has sold almost 60 million albums. This workshop will take students on a journey through Dylan’s ever-changing world and follow this real-life troubadour from his formative years in New York’s Greenwich Village in the early 1960s through the turbulent and electrified decades that followed, and conclude with his most recent album, Tempest.