Class #67

The Death Of Ivan Ilych & Job: Reckoning With Life, Reckoning With God

Jim Severance & Les Longden

September 8 - September 14


instructor imageIvan Ilych in some ways prefigured Sinclair Lewis's Babbit a half century later—Babbit “materialistic, complacent and conformist.” But following a mishap that became life threatening, Ilych found himself staring into the abyss. Russian novelists are famous for probing the psyche. Tolstoy memorably does that in this short story.

Job, too, is a man who suffers. He asks “Why?” and “Why me?” He refuses to take his suffering in silence. Job's friends offer him numerous cliched answers—labeled as wisdom—for explaining and handling his suffering. Job insists on protesting his suffering and takes his case before the deepest mystery of all—God.

This class will be a conversation in which some existential questions will be considered. You should read beforehand and bring Tolstoy's short story and any translation of Job to class.

Jim Severance lives on a farm in southern Wisconsin. He has long believed that Job is the most arresting book in the Bible. He is also taken with the great Russian novelists.

Les Longden is a former pastor, university chaplain, cross country coach, marathon runner, author and professor at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary. Now retired, he enjoys reading and discussing great books and ideas with friends. One of his most frequent conversation partners is Clearing instructor Jim Severance.

Jim will contact students prior to class.

Level: All Levels

Pricing (per person):
$1045 Dorm Room Package*
$1145 Two-Person Room Package*
$1705 Single-Person Room Package* (limited availability)
$615 Commuter Package** (limited availability)

*package includes tuition, lodging & 16 meals
**package includes tuition & 7 meals