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The second RCAH Parents College will be held from Friday, August 2, through Sunday, August 4, 2013. Interested in attending? Contact Dawn Janetzke via email or phone at (517) 884-0383 by April 12, 2013. Enrollment will likely be limited to 20 participants.
Last summer's topic was sacrifice, and we discussed philosophical arguments, analyzed famous paintings, watched contemporary film, and put our heads together from virtually morning until night. The final fabric arts project--a quilt with 12 squares done by each of the participants--accompanied by a booklet of artist's statements grace the Main Office of the RCAH.
The topic for summer 2013 is forgiveness. Like sacrifice, forgiveness has a long religious, philosophical, social, and political history. It is an ideal topic for interdisciplinaty exploration. We will begin with the personal moral dilemmas that surround the practice of forgiveness. What reasons, if any, are there for preferring it over vindictiveness (some would say simply revenge) when a truly horrible wrong has been done? How does it differ, if at all, from acts of mercy? Should it depend upon sincere repentance by the wrongdoer? Is it possible to forgive oneself?
At an institutional level, forgiveness today is often hailed as an important altemative to criminal punishment. New ideals such as reparative and restorative justice have been developed where established forms of criminal justice seem to have failed. We will look at some of these attempts to institutionalize forgiveness such as the famous South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission and also local efforts in the United States to incorporate forgiveness as a remedy for some of the shortcomings of the criminal justice system, especially where youthful offenders are concerned.
To complement this year's texts, we will also be considering other forms of expression and modes of representation, including photography, painting, and film. As is our custom in the RCAH, we will put our shoulder to the wheel so that participants are able to express their own views in a new medium. This summer we will be working on a printing project using our own letter presses in the RCAH art studio. Arie Koelewyn, a regular artist-in-residence in the RCAH, will be our guide on this project.
Parents College participants will stay in Snyder-Phillips and dine in the Gallery cafeteria. Classes will also be held right in Snyder-Phillips, and Steve Esquith will serve as lead instructor. There will be no tuition charged, and the fees for housing and meals are as follows:
Single room: Friday, August 2 and Saturday, August 3 -- $35 per night
Double room: Friday, August 2 and Saturday, August 3 -- $25 per night per person
Meals will be a total of $75 per person for 3 meals per day for 3 days in the Gallery.