SCANS – Seniors College


To take SCANS courses you must register at a cost of $155.25 per year (fee subject to change). This allows you to take as many SCANS courses as you wish for one year in Bedford, Chester, Dartmouth, Halifax, Liverpool, Mahone Bay, Truro and Tantallon. Online registration is available.



Scans courses at the Mahone Bay Centre

Information and Registration for the Spring 2017 SCANS term will
take place at the Mahone Bay Centre on Tuesday, March 20 at
10.30am. Meet the Instructors, ask questions about the courses and
learn more about SCANS.

Online Registration

Online applications for course registration will be accepted starting March 22 on the SCANS website. Applications received before 5:30 pm on March 27 will be included in a computerized random draw to make up the class lists. Members will be notified of their status promptly by email. Courses that are not full will remain open to
further registration.


A Cauldron of Struggle: Ideology, War and Art in the 20th Century
Instructor: Faye Pickrem
Mondays, 2.00pm – 4.00pm
April 16 – May 21, 2018 (6 weeks)

Revolution, war, and upheaval are inevitably entwined with visions of a ‘brave new world’ of change, reform, and progress. But for whom? At stake in any struggle are competing ideas of power, culture, and truth – the demolition of certain physical and ideological boundaries and construction of a new world order, whether utopian or
dystopian. From the 1917 Russian Revolution to the vast European theatres of war to the killing fields of Vietnam and the hunt for Hussein in Iraq, competing ideas of culture, truth, and power are at stake. This course examines literal, metaphorical, and cultural
representations of war and revolution through literature, visual art, documentary journalism, and manifesto.

The course is divided into three sections: “Modern Times”, “I Have a Dream”, and “Shock and Awe”. It is by no means a comprehensive study of war art, nor an analysis of the tactical aspects of particular wars. Rather, this is an overview of rhetorical and artistic
representations of war and struggle. We will dip into the writings of war poets, explore the ideas in The Communist Manifesto and Reading Lolita in Tehran, listen to Bertolt Brecht’s audio testimony to the House Un-American Activities Committee, discuss snippets of film from Eisentein’s October, Chaplin’s Modern Times, and Coppola’s Apocalypse Now, read Bush and Blair on WMD (Weapons of Mass Destruction), and discuss civil rights – Kent State, Martin Luther King, the struggle for women to be legally
recognized as ‘persons’. We will contrast the depiction of Vietnam in the fiction of Bao Ninh as opposed to that of Tim O’Brien, contemplate Michael Kamber’s Photojournalists on War: The Untold Stories from Iraq, and witness the fascist propaganda of Leni Riefenstahl. We will look at and think about a cross-section of war paintings. Mostly we will talk about what we encounter in these images and writings of war. What emerges out of this cauldron of struggle? Is it dream vision or nightmare, a brave new world or what poet Wilfred Owen calls the old lie once again?

Faye Pickrem taught English Literature and Cultural Studies at Trent University in Peterborough for many years. Faye grew up in Halifax and received her Bachelors and Masters degrees from Dalhousie and Acadia respectively; she has done post-graduate work at the University of London and Strathclyde University, with doctoral studies at York University. In 2006, Faye was nominated for TVO’s Best Lecturer in Canada. In addition to renovating a heritage home in Lunenburg, Faye enjoys writing, theatre and film, travel, gardening, and good conversation. She currently divides her time between Lunenburg and Toronto as a communications consultant and writing coach.


A Beginner’s Guide to the Italian Renaissance.
Instructor: Greg Galbraith
Tuesdays, 10.00am – 12.00pm
April 17 – May 22, 2018 (6 weeks)

This course is a six-week visual romp designed for anyone curious
about an age that saw a more analytical and intellectual approach
to life take hold, as the focus of attention shifted from the Church to
humans and the world around them. While the majority of time will be devoted to the art and artists of the era, time will be given to the significant events, notable personalities, and the underlying spirit that spurred an expansion of thought, creativity and commerce that rivalled, if not surpassed, the Classical World.

Greg Galbraith is a graduate of the University of New Brunswick who thoroughly enjoyed 34 years teaching secondary school English, history and physical education in Vancouver and Halifax. Early in his career he was asked to develop a new Western Civilization 12 course that radically changed his approach to learning and teaching. Being a visual learner who loves stories, he began taking art history courses and soon realized that images, particularly of art and architecture, greatly enhanced his students’
interest and ability to recall significant events/eras. Frequent trips to Italy, with and without students, fostered his passion for the Italian Renaissance, a topic he has not taught since moving back to the Maritimes in 1998. In a sense, the course he is offering to teach will be a personal Renaissance for him.


History and Politics of the Oil Industry.
Instructor: Michael Collins
Fridays, 2.00pm – 4.00pm
April 20 – May 25, 2018 (6 weeks)


A more or less, (and skimpy), history and politics of the liquid which fuels our society. Ambition, technical expertise, skullduggery, high and low diplomacy, treachery, military requirements, and capitalism “red in tooth and claw”.

1. A quick run through the history of exploration and development of
the industry. Heavy initial emphasis on North America.
2. Standard Oil and the business genius of John D Rockefeller
3. Russia, South Sea Trading and Hard Nosed Dutchmen. A quick trot
along twister and devious paths.
4. The Desert Kingdom. USA enters the Middle East and trades Iran
for Saudi Arabia.
5. World War and Industrial War. Japan and Germany risk all for the
prize of “black gold”.
6. Provisional: Suez 1956. Protecting oil supplies and the last gasp of
Imperialism, USA cracks the whip and shows it does not need allies.

Dr. Collins studied at the University of East Anglia (Norwich) School of History and since
coming to Canada has taught courses on the History of Clothing and Fashion, the British
Industrial Revolution, The Soviet Union and 20th Century European History at Mount St.
Vincent, Saint Mary’s, Acadia and Dalhousie Universities as well as for SCANS. First career as an Oil Industry “gypsy” around the world. Then BA in Economic and Social
History and Soviet Studies. Then PhD from University of East Anglia (England) in Economic and Social studies. Teaching modern history (from 1750) British and European history and Soviet Studies. Clothing and Fashion unit designed to be used as a ‘hook’ to teach Economic and Social History about 15 years hence, but then got a mind of its own
and expanded every year. Retired from full time teaching but teaching part time until mid-2011 at Acadia, Mount St Vincent and St Mary’s.