Herbst Program of Humanities

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Since 1989, the Herbst Program has equipped engineering students with the right tools to gain intelligent and relevant access to the great ongoing conversations of human existence. Our core classes are small (12-14), highly interactive and practical. We emphasize the development of communication and thinking skills that will enhance both your life and your career. As a program of "applied humanities," we wrestle with how a more skillful engagement of literature, philosophy, film, drama, music, and art can enrich, inform, transform and enliven how we choose to engage ourselves, others and our world.

All Herbst classes count toward Humanities and Social Sciences requirements in the College of Engineering and Applied Science.

Herbst Students Say ...

"Herbst was a breath of fresh air in my engineering education.  While traditional engineering classes seem to focus on straightforward "plug and chug," Herbst seminars provided me with an opportunity to analyze situations with many different answers ...   Having been in the workforce for several years now, I often find myself in situations of complete uncertainty.  Successfully navigating these open-ended challenges requires developing an idea while accepting and adapting to feedback ...  It's not just like being in a Herbst seminar; it's like writing a Herbst essay!" - Nick Little (AeroEngr '09)

"I cannot say enough about the Herbst program, and not just because it afforded me my first opportunity to leave the country to spend a Maymester in Italy (though that was an experience of a lifetime!).  I would never have been exposed to Greek philosophers, Italian artists, and lesser-known novels of American novelists without Herbst.  The intimate classes, engaging discussions, and emphasis on critical thinking outside of a technical area were invaluable."  - Heather Doty (BS/MS CivEngr '01)

Herbst Lunchtime Seminars 

A directed reading group for engineering faculty and staff during the academic year
Wednesdays, 12:00-12:50 p.m. in ECOT 831

The Herbst Program of Humanities hosts a series of drop-in brown bag seminars for engineering faculty and staff throughout the academic year. Bring your lunch and join us to learn and share your thoughts and insights on a variety of great books. For more information, email herbst@colorado.edu.
 

First up in September:  The Friendly Persuasion by Jessamyn West
This episodic 1945 novel centers on the Birdwell family, American Quakers raising a family in 19th-century Indiana.  Eliza is a preacher; her husband, Jess, is a traveling nursery-man.  Both are kind, generous, determined, and devout -- but Jess has a few traits that a preacher's husband should not cultivate.  He pines for music, he always turns a Sunday drive into a horse-race, and he has an irreverent sense of humor.  There is no great drama here -- just the business of sharing a life, raising children, and weathering the storm.  The writing is lovely and lilting, and the stories will stay with you for a long time...

Wed., Sept. 10th - Chapters 1-4
(Music on the Muscatatuck, Shivaree before Breakfast, The Pacing Goose, Lead Her Like a Pigeon)

Wed., Sept. 17th - Chapters 5-8
(The Battle of Finney's Ford, The Buried Leaf, A Likely Exchange, First Day Finish)

Wed., Sept. 24th - Chapters 9-12, 14
("Yes, We'll Gather at the River," The Meeting House, The Vase, The Illumination, Homer and the Lilies)

You can order the book at http://www.amazon.com/The-Friendly-Persuasion-Jessamyn-West/dp/015602909X

 

COMING UP:
October - Hardy Fredricksmeyer on the movie Memento, on October 8th, 15th, and 22nd
November - New faculty member Paul Diduch on Shakespeare's Tempest
January - Anja Lange, TBA
February - New faculty member Andrea Kowalchuk on Euripides' Hecuba
March - Wayne Ambler: "A Week in Rome"
April - Scot Douglass, TBA

 

Important Announcements

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