Stephen Greenblatt

Uncut Gems
Screening followed by Q&A with Benny Safdie, co-director

with Benny Safdie
Thursday, July 16, 2020
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Uncut Gems was a critical favorite last year and Adam Sandler’s standout performance as a fast-talking, Jewish-American gambling addict who runs a jewelry store in the city’s Diamond District, won raves. Following a screening of this award-winning film, Benny Safdie, who directed this film with his brother Josh, will join Academy Fellows and other teachers for a Q&A.

Benny Safdie produces and writes films with his brother Joshua that have premiered at renowned international film festivals including Cannes, Venice, New York Film Festival and Sundance, and exhibited at the Film Society of Lincoln Center and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. His films include Uncut Gems, Good Time, Heaven Knows What, Lenny Cooke, and Daddy Longlegs. The Safdie brothers have diverse practices that extend beyond time-based media. Safdie co-founded Mmuseumm with Joshua Safdie and Alex Kalman, a modern natural history museum situated in an elevator shaft in Cortlandt Alley that showcases contemporary artifacts.

Telling Stories Out of School

Thursday, July 9th, 2020
6 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Teachers have the most fascinating, difficult, and important job on the planet, and their workdays are filled with stories. Join us for an evening of teacher stories inspired by an Academy for Teachers master class on storytelling led by Seth Barrish and Mike Birbiglia.

13th: Screening & Discussion

with Dr. Yohuru Williams and Sari Rosenberg
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
7 p.m. – 9:15 p.m.

Join us for an evening of reflection and discussion as we screen 13th, the 2016 documentary by award-winning director Ava DuVernay. The film explores mass incarceration as a form of racialized control—an extension of slavery—and features a host of voices, from Cory Booker and Jelani Cobb to Angela Davis and Khalil Gibran Muhammad.

Dr. Yohuru Williams is the Dean and McQuinn Distinguished Chair of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of St. Thomas. He is an acclaimed activist and scholar who is presently finishing a book entitled In the Shadow of the Whipping Post: Lynching, Capital Punishment, and Jim Crow Justice in Delaware, 1865-1965.

Sari Beth Rosenberg teaches U.S. history at the High School for Environmental Studies. Her gifts in the classroom are matched by her active presence in conversations about the teaching of history. In 2019, she received the 2019 Paul Gagnon Prize by the National Council for History Education, an award that recognizes a K-12 history teacher’s exceptional historical scholarship or contribution to the teaching of history.

Imagination & Childhood

with Nancy Tarshis
Thursday, May 14, 2020
4 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

What are the limits of imagination? Why do we care about unleashing it in the elementary classroom? After exploring how the imagination drives, binds, and challenges, we’ll hit the pause button, turn away from our screens, and to step into our own imaginations. (For K-2 teachers and K-4 special education teachers.)

Nancy Tarshis is a speech-language pathologist, special educator, and author. Currently, she is Director of Early Childhood Programming at The Quad Preparatory School, a nationally renowned K-12 program dedicated to twice-exceptional children. Previously, she was a member of the clinical team at Children’s Evaluation and Rehabilitation Center at Einstein College of Medicine. She is co-author of We Thinkers! Volume 1 Social Explorers and We Thinkers! Volume 2 Social Problem Solvers and The Group Collaboration Play and Problem Solving Scale.

Fleabag: The Inside Story

with Amy Hungerford
Thursday, May 7, 2020
4 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

What does the outrageously oversharing Fleabag (she of the eponymous Amazon Prime series) have to tell us about inner life? About solitude? And why is a priest the only character who perceives the silences in which her mouthy asides to the audience take place?

Amy Hungerford is executive vice president for Arts and Sciences and dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Columbia University. Previously she was Professor of English and Divisional Director of Humanities at Yale University, where she specializes in 20th- and 21st-century American literature. In the summer, she teaches at the Bread Loaf School of English, Middlebury College’s M.A. program serving (mainly) secondary school English teachers. Professor Hungerford’s teaching is also known worldwide thanks to her popular, and free, online course “The American Novel Since 1945.” She is the author of The Holocaust of Texts: Genocide, Literature; Personification; Postmodern Belief: American Literature and Religion Since 1960; and, most recently, Making Literature Now. In addition, she edited the Norton Anthology of American Literature, Volume E, “Literature Since 1945.”

Gloria Steinem & U.S. History

with Amy Richards
Tuesday, May 5, 2020
4 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

Gloria Steinem made history and history made her. This class will consider the past 60 years of American history through the life of this great feminist.

Amy Richards, a leading voice in contemporary feminist thought and action, is the author of We Are Makers: Real Women and Girls Shaping Our WorldManifesta; Grassroots; and Opting In. She’s a producer of the Emmy-nominated series “WOMAN” on Viceland and an executive producer of The Glorias, due in theaters fall 2020. She created the Third Wave Foundation and Feminist Camp.

Telling Better Stories

with Andy Goodman
Wednesday, April 29, 2020
4 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

Every good teacher knows that the best way to teach is through stories. Spend an hour with Andy Goodman thinking about the elements of a good story and then tell a true story of your own.

Andy Goodman is co-founder and director of The Goodman Center. Along with Storytelling as Best Practice, he is author of Why Bad Ads Happen to Good Causes and Why Bad Presentations Happen to Good Causes. He also publishes a monthly journal, free-range thinking, to share best practices in the field of public interest communications. Andy is internationally known for his speeches and workshops on storytelling and has led over 500 trainings for clients including CARE, The Nature Conservancy, Boys and Girls Clubs of America, NOAA, the San Diego Zoo, MIT, Princeton, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, GE, Bank of America, and many others.


with Allen M. Spiegel
Monday, April 27, 2020
4 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

Just a few months ago, the word “microbes” would have led most of us to think of our gut microbiome or perhaps probiotics. Today, the first thing we think of is the novel Coronavirus. In this mini class, we’ll attempt to understand what this difference says about the world we inhabit.

Allen M. Spiegel, a widely renowned physician-scientist, was Dean of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine from 2006 to 2018, and remains on the faculty as Professor of Medicine (Endocrinology) and Molecular Pharmacology. Prior to joining Einstein, he was Director of the National Institute of Diabetes & Digestive Diseases & Kidney Diseases at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the culmination of a distinguished 33-year-career at the NIH. His research on signal transduction helped to clarify the genetic basis of several endocrine diseases. A member of the National Academy of Medicine, Dr. Spiegel earned his bachelor’s degree summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Columbia University in 1967. He received his M.D. degree cum laude and Alpha Omega Alpha from Harvard Medical School in 1971 and completed his clinical training at Massachusetts General Hospital.

“Investiture at Cecconi’s,” a poem by James Merrill

with Jeff Nunokawa
Thursday, April 23, 2020
4 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

This class will consider a great poem written in the midst of an earlier epidemic that shattered New York.

Jeff Nunokawa has been a professor of English at Princeton University for nearly thirty years. He’s written and taught widely, on topics ranging from Victorian literature to the history of the essay to the intellectual uses of social media. At present he’s at work on a book that may be called something like Mid-Century Middle Class, about being brought up middle class, middlebrow, mid-century by old-school New Deal, mixed-race, mixed-feelings-about-the-melting-pot parents. He is also writing a book about first sentences in literature, from Homer to the present. Nunokawa began his career teaching middle and high school, and he has been honored and happy to be in contact with middle and high school teachers at the Bread Loaf School of English, where he has taught since 1999.

Frederick Douglass’s Dream for a Multiracial America

with David W. Blight
Thursday, April 16, 2020
4 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

Following the Civil War, Douglass thought a multiracial utopia was within reach. This mini master class will explore “The Composite Nation,” his 1869 speech which offers a blueprint for a multicultural America.

David W. Blight teaches American history at Yale University and is one of the nation’s foremost authorities on the US Civil War and its legacy. He is the author of many books, including Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory, which won eight awards, among them the Bancroft Prize, the Abraham Lincoln Prize, and the Frederick Douglass Prize. His Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for History.

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