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Mythic Couples and their Modern Meanings: Heloise and Abelard

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University of Philosophical Research

3910 Los Feliz Boulevard

Los Angeles, CA 90027

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Take an intellectually gifted young woman and place her under the tutelage of one of the most brilliant men in the world at the time. In fact, move him into her home to facilitate the education. What could go wrong? This story from 1132 CE explains in great and fascinating detail what did go wrong (and right) in that scenario. We can tell from the title of Peter Abelard’s work—The History of My Calamities—how he feels about it, but as usual, things are not as simple as they appear. This story is a fascinating and passionate account of the life of the mind—of two minds, in fact—and the affairs of the heart. Join us for this unique and “true” story that is a window onto the Medieval world and into the human heart.

About the Series

There is something about two or (as a philosopher would say) twoness. Sure, one or oneness is the ultimate reality, but twoness speaks to that which is more than one—multiplicity, the many, manifestations—in other words life itself. If one is our aspiration, two is our reality, the place from which we reach for the one. Also, it’s difficult to tell a good story about the one because stories function through conflict and tension, and for that you need at least two. Accordingly, the stories we have told ourselves throughout the world and all through history are stories of two, especially couples. In this President’s Class, we examine some of these great stories of couples. We will learn what they symbolize to the cultures who told them and what the can mean for us today. Welcome to Mythic Couples and their Modern Meanings.

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University of Philosophical Research

3910 Los Feliz Boulevard

Los Angeles, CA 90027

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