Seminar programs offer in-depth examinations of topics in an intimate, small group setting, fostering interactive discussion and opportunities for personal growth.

Sponsored by: Mr. and Mrs. James H. Carney II, and Leonor de Gonzalez

CHECK BACK SOON FOR INFORMATION ON THE 2017 SEASON! Below are featured speakers from 2016.

The Idea of Honor - from Dignity and Respect to Contempt and Shame
Tamar March, Ph.D.

The concept of honor was once central to western codes of behavior. In this seminar, we will explore to what degree this concept still governs decisions and actions in our time, and whether honor and conscience as practiced today are intertwined. The following authors will fuel our discussions: Kwame Anthony Appiah, George Orwell, Tim O’Brien, Ernest Hemingway, Edith Pearlman, Alice Munro, and Calvin Trillin.

Tamar March is Founder and President Emerita of The Arden Seminars, Inc. and a Senior Fellow at the Association of American Colleges and Universities. March received her B.A. from Brooklyn College, M.A. from Radcliffe College, and Ph.D. from Harvard University in Romance Languages. She served as dean of the Radcliffe Center for Educational Programs at Harvard University from Fall 1996 to Summer 2002.

American Masterworks
Susan Rosoff 

This three-day program turns the spotlight on remarkable masterpieces by American artists. See portraits of colonial Americans full of subtle symbolism, and journey with artist/explorers like Frederic Edwin Church and Martin Johnson Heade into great landscapes here and abroad. Understand the mindset of Winslow Homer, join renegade Grant Wood, and connect with Georgia O’Keeffe who responded to a quickly modernizing society. Don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy how these artists and others demonstrated their enormous talent, creating masterworks that still resonate with us today.

Susan Rosoff is the founder and managing member of Susan Merrill Rosoff, Arts and Museum Consulting, LLC. Previously she served as Curator of Education at the Orlando Museum of Art, where she developed many award-winning programs for adults including lectures, workshops, seminars, and art appreciation classes. In partnership with the University of Central Florida she taught graduate and undergraduate art history classes including Twentieth Century Art, Art of the Last Twenty-Five Years, and Non-Western Art. She has received the Briarcliff College Alumnae Award as well as awards from United Arts of Central Florida, the Florida Alliance for Arts Education, and the Florida Art Education Association.

The World of Wolf Hall
Judy M. Pittenger

Hilary Mantel’s novels and the BBC series have given history fans the magnificent world of Wolf Hall, the turbulent times of Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn, Thomas More, and Thomas Cromwell. Mantel is intrigued by the fictive nature of received history—the problem of knowing the truth about the past. This program will consider the political and religious environment of 16th century England, providing context for Mantel’s novels and the works they have inspired.

The King James Bible - A Celebration More Than 400 Years in the Making

Whatever our faith or belief, as speakers of English we have been influenced by the power of this translation of the Bible, authorized by King James in 1604. The very rhythm, cadence, and phraseology of modern English resonates with the beauty and majesty of this text. The ringing rhetoric of Lincoln and Churchill is firmly grounded in the sonority of the psalms, the wisdom of Ecclesiastes, the sublimity of the Gospel of John. Paradise Lost, Handel's Messiah, even “Charlie Brown's Christmas” are all grounded in this text. Through word and image, we will consider the 405-year history of this remarkable work.

With a B.A. and a M.A. in Modern European History from Stanford University, Judy Pittenger taught history and literature at Roland Park Country School for twenty-two years. In 1991 she was named by the National Endowment for the Humanities as the Teacher-Scholar of Maryland. She has lived, studied, and traveled extensively in England and has taught literature to adults in Oxford University’s Continuing Education Program. In Baltimore she has taught literature to adults for the past decade and also lectures frequently.

Masterworks of Literature Seminar Series
Michael Verde

Michael Verde leads stirring literary discussions of life-changing books. His intellectually riveting presentations draw people together around a common imaginative and social experience. Books and people come alive in these programs. Join us as we revisit or visit for the first time three great works of literature and explore the enduring qualities that make them valuable to us.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Márquez
Life of Pi by Yann Martel


Great Teachers of the Spirit Seminar Series

There are a handful of teachers in human history whose teachings change not only what we know as history, but what we mean by "human." Three such world-turning teachers are this series’ subjects: Socrates, Buddha, and Jesus. Each presentation will focus on the central insights of one teacher, will be grounded in the work of particular authors, and will deepen awareness and appreciation, not offer an authoritative final answer or an opinion of who is the “greatest.” Each presentation will include an intermission midway for lunch and conversation with other participants in a spirit of companionship.

Buddha: Awakening from Illusions
Friday - Socrates: The Quest of Wisdom
Jesus: The Word Made Flesh 

Michael Verde grew up in east Texas, where he read so much it alarmed his high school counselor. He graduated with honors from the University of Texas, earned a M.A. in literary studies from the University of Iowa, and a M.A. in theology from the University of Durham, England, where he graduated at the top of his international class. In the English classroom, Michael was named Teacher of the Year in only his third year of teaching, at Lamar University. He is currently finishing a Ph.D. at Indiana University in the area of empathetic communication.

If you prefer to order by phone, please call (772) 231-0707 x136 to reserve your space today.

VBMA Adult Public Programs Refund Policy
All Sales Are Final; please review your reservations carefully before submitting. We are unable to offer refunds or exchanges beginning sixty (60) days before a scheduled program. However, the value of cancelled reservations may qualify as a tax-deductible donation; please notify the Museum at your earliest opportunity before the program date. Occasionally, programs are cancelled or postponed due to circumstances beyond the Museum’s control. When this occurs, you may elect to have your reservation honored for the rescheduled date or you may receive a refund if applicable. In some cases, the performance contract may set refund limitations. All refunds or exchanges are subject to a $10 non-refundable convenience fee.



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