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Understanding Loneliness: Literature, Philosophy,Theory

at Brooklyn Institute for Social Research - Online

(27)
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Description
Class Level: All levels
Age Requirements: 21 and older
Average Class Size: 14
Teacher: Samantha Hill

Flexible Reschedule Policy: This provider has flexible, free rescheduling for any-in person workshop. Please see the cancellation policy for more details

What you'll learn in this philosophy class:

How are we to understand loneliness today? It appears that we are facing a mass epidemic of loneliness—one perhaps exacerbated by virological pandemic of COVID-19. Britain has appointed a Minister of Loneliness to counter rising rates of isolation. Approximately 20-43 percent of American adults over the age of 60 experience “frequent or intense loneliness.” And, it is clear from medical research that loneliness has significant health impacts: lonely people are more likely to develop chronic health conditions and die younger. What are the causes of mass loneliness, and what consequences might it have, not only for individuals, but also for cultural and political life?

In this course, we will examine the political and cultural aspects of loneliness through political theory, philosophy, and literature. We will ask: From what does loneliness stem? Is it, as Sigmund Freud argued, native to the human condition; or is it, per Erich Fromm, a function of capitalist life? What does it mean to be lonely? Are there different forms of loneliness? Is there a difference between solitude and loneliness? Is there a connection between the rise of loneliness and the resurgence of nationalism and illiberalism? Does social media exacerbate loneliness? What does a politics of loneliness, whether against or for, look like? As we consider loneliness in its multiple dimensions, we’ll read from works by Hannah Arendt, David Riesman, Arlie Hochschild, William Shakespeare, Herman Melville, Sigmund Freud, Erich Fromm, and Ralph Waldo Emerson, among others.


Remote Learning

This course is available for "remote" learning and will be available to anyone with access to an internet device with a microphone (this includes most models of computers, tablets). Classes will take place with a "Live" instructor at the date/times listed below.

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Refund Policy

Upon request, we will refund the entire cost of a class up until 1 week before its start date. Students who withdraw after that point but before the first class are entitled to a 75% refund. After the first class: 50%. After the second: 25%. No refunds will be given after the third class.

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Reviews of Classes at Brooklyn Institute for Social Research (27)

School: Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

The Brooklyn Institute for Social Research was established in 2011 in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn. Its mission is to extend liberal arts education and research far beyond the borders of the traditional university, supporting community education needs and opening up new possibilities for scholarship in the...

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