Early 20th Century history a topic at CRI

By John Nadeau | Mar 22, 2012

You may find it’s like opening a large time capsule.

With the guidance of Professor Kristi Busch, you’ll flash back to the first half of the American 20th century.

From political, social, and cultural perspectives, you’ll witness our country evolve from isolationism to become a major player on the world stage.

Prof.  Busch’s course, Cultural Explosion in 20th Century  America (1900-1950), will take place Fridays from 1 to 3 p.m. starting April 27 and concluding May 18.

It will be one of the spring term offerings of the Creative Retirement Institute (CRI), the lifelong learning program at Edmonds Community College.

“Decade by decade, we’ll explore the cultural phenomena of art, music, literature, drama, and philosophy,” Prof. Busch says.

“We’ll see how they shaped our modern consciousness, making us who we are today.”

Her presentations will be mostly lectures augmented by Powerpoint images and recordings, but she emphasizes there will be plenty of time for discussion.

She also stresses the course will not center on sweet nostalgia.

“Considering the country survived two major wars and the Great Depression during this time, there will be a dark side we won’t ignore,” she says.

Older adults like CRI students will remember some of the  events and trends that stand out in the first half of the century because they, of course, took part in that era.

“One of my questions will be what do you remember as a kid – the Depression, the Second World War, the Red Scare?”

She adds, “Even if they were there through the unfolding, they were not likely to see the bigger picture.”

Though she has offered this course several times to groups of older adults, she also has a version for high school students.

“That’s a different challenge,” she says,” because they just don’t have the same frame of reference, and I have to provide more information.”

On one occasion, in a discussion of pop culture, she found her young students didn’t know what a 78 r.p.m. record was, or a “45,” or a long playing record.

“As a matter of fact, I’m not even sure they knew what a record was,” she adds.

Obviously, older adults do have a much different background.

“To them, I say come and relive this cavalcade of history!” Prof. Busch says.

You can find out about her course and about 30 other CRI offerings by phoning  425-640-1830. Ask for a free course brochure.

Classes are open to all adults, regardless of educational background.

You’ll find fees are low, and financial help is available.



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