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Discussion Groups

Discussion Groups

Welcome to WEA Sydney's Discussion Group Program! The Discussion Group Program is a distance education based program with course range runs from history and literature into topics of philosophy and social sciences. Designed for group study (minimum of 6) at home or in a club or other community setting.

All DGP courses listed in the WEA Sydney Discussion Group Program Catalogue are available for enrolment – so don't miss out!

Simply check the availability of your chosen course with WEA Sydney as several courses get booked quickly. Full course information can be found using the links below.

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The Grandeur of Ancient Egypt

Ancient Egyptian civilisation has tantalised countless generations. This course is a fascinating survey of the history and society of the world of the Pharaohs, vast in wealth, technology and intellect, yet revering death and built on the forced labour of slaves. It will take you into the lives of the Egyptian people through the remarkable finds of... [More]

The World of The Venerable Bede: Anglo-Saxon And Celtic Britain

The Venerable Bede (c.673-735) was one of the leading scholars in early medieval Europe and ‘father’ of English history. He lived during one of the most vibrant periods of Anglo-Saxon civilization and played an important role in its evolving society. This society witnessed the transformation of England both religiously and socially with the spread... [More]

Sharing the World: People and other Animals

Animals are an intrinsic part of literature. From childhood to maturity, we read about rabbits in coats, lost dogs, man hunting whales and clever foxes. We share this earth with thousands of other species: we love and eat them, skin and tame them; and we write about them. In this course we explore some literary animals, our connections to them and... [More]

Separatism - Why Nations Break Apart

This course looks at how and why nations fragment, why parts break away, and considers whether this could happen in Australia, with separatist movements in Western Australia and Norfolk Island and among some indigenous groups. How could indigenous ‘recognition’ and ‘sovereignty’ co-exist within Australia’s constitutional structure? Sometimes... [More]

Eve, the Apple and Medieval Society

Medieval theologians believed the nature of Eve’s disobedience, as told in the book of Genesis, was sexual and thus viewed women as a persistent source of sexual temptation. This course examines medieval society’s attitude to sex, love, romance, marriage, courtly love and various other alternatives through authors such as Andeas Cappellanus and... [More]

Aristotle On The Happy Life

Aristotle’s Nikomachaen Ethics is a book on how to prosper in life. Bearing in mind that all of us live in communities and states, we cannot prosper alone. What I do affects others; and what others do affects me. Accordingly ethics is an issue for everyone. But although Artistotle’s work is a philosophical treatise, it is written in an easy style... [More]

Armchair Travels

This course let’s you visit six extraordinary destinations without leaving home. We will discuss the history of these places, what continues to draws travellers and options for ‘virtual travel’. We will visit Rapa Nui (Easter Island) unique, remote, mysterious; Vladivostok Russia, once closed to outsiders, now Russia’s gateway to the East; Kasane... [More]

Religion and Politics Around the World

Agitation for guarantees of religious freedom, perhaps within an Australian Bill of Rights, have encouraged debates about the ideal relations between religion and politics at the personal level, between church and state at the institutional level. How far should governments be able to regulate religious activity? How far should religious principles... [More]

Royalty & Riches, Looters & Collectors - The Wonders of the Art Museums of Today

Millions of people each year visit the major Museums of art from London to New York and from Paris to St Petersburg. But who were the individuals or families that amassed these amazing collections? What are the stories behind the masterpieces? How did major art works travel between countries as war booty from the 1500s to looted art in WWII? Some... [More]

From French Royalty to Empire – Art and decorative elegance from Louis XIV’s Versailles to Napoleon

French monarchs managed their images as carefully as any self-branded celebrity today. How did Louis XIV use the artisans and artists of the day through his patronage to enhance and dazzle his image as Sun-King? How did he make Versailles the representation of himself to be envied and copied by monarchs all over Europe? Louis XVI and Marie... [More]