Celebrating the Good Life Kayla steinmetz, brandy jensen, daniel volya, and erin snyder

Beethoven's Ode to Joy

  • People: Schiller, Beethoven, and Bernstein
  • Universality
  • Brotherhood of Mankind
  • Art as a reflection and celebration of humanity
  • Questions: What is a modern day Ode to Joy? How has technology affected appreciation of music?

Art Objects

  • Author: Jeanette Winterson
  • Art and Universality
  • Learn to appreciate art individually
  • Art and beauty never seperate
  • Important quotes: “Art opens the heart” (Winterson 7); “It is not so much influence as it is connection” (Winterson 12); “Art, all art, is the communication cord that cannot be snapped by indifferences or disasters” (Winterson 20)
  • Questions: Winterson says that “true art, when it happens to us, challenges the ‘I’ that we are.” In what ways does art change a person’s outlook on life? Any Personal experiences?

The Sabbath: A Palace in Time

  • Author: Abraham Joshua Heschel
  • Aristotle's view vs. a biblical view
  • Set aside time to celebrate life: "a day for the sake of life" (Heschel 14)
  • Rest takes discipline
  • Less common to observe Sabbath today
  • Questions: What things do we do that are relatable to the Sabbath? Do you think that rest, such as observing Sabbath, is a good way to stop and celebrate life, or do you view it as a waste of time? How important is rest in the search for a good life?

The Super Bowl: A Modern Day Example of Celebrating

  • Nationally celebrated event in the United States
  • Mirroring in other cultures
  • Contrasts with the idea of observing Sabbath
  • Important quote: “A celebration in general crosses the line if it’s choreographed, if it’s excessive, if it’s prolonged.” (Mather)
  • Sports can be nationally celebrated but also universally expressing the objective, which states, “celebrations of the good life are 'universal' or particular to a place, time, and audience.”
  • Questions: Is the American celebration of the Super Bowl excessive? What role does the celebration of sports have on the good life?

Discussion Questions

  • Is art actually necessary for a good life?
  • Do we celebrate for ourselves or because of societal expectations? If it is for ourselves, is it just to bring enjoyment into life or is there a meaningful purpose behind it in finding a good life?


Created with images by Erik Cleves Kristensen - "Painting" • Piano Piano! - "Beethoven - Symphony No.8 & No.9 - Gwyneth Jones, Hanna Schwarz, Rene Kollo, Kurt Moll - Wiener Staatsopernchor & Wiener Phil., Leonard Bernstein, DGG 2707 124" • Sam-H-A - "National Gallery of Art" • Arieth - "challah shabbat challah board" • WikiImages - "american football super bowl nfl" • Pixoman - "question mark red sky"

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