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Professor William R. Cook

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  • Dante's Divine Comedy |  The Great Courses

    Dante's Divine Comedy

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Ronald B. Herzman, Professor William R. Cook
    Overall
    (263)
    Performance
    (240)
    Story
    (244)

    Professors Cook and Herzman provide you with an illuminating introduction to one of the greatest works ever written. One of the most profound and satisfying of all poems, The Divine Comedy (or Commedia) of Dante Alighieri is a book for life. In a brilliantly constructed narrative of his imaginary guided pilgrimage through the three realms of the Christian afterlife, Dante accomplished a literary task of astonishing complexity. In these twenty-four lectures, as you follow Dante on his journey, you'll learn how medieval literature offers insights into fundamental questions.

    Patti says: "The Commedia for Modern Readers"
  • The Catholic Church: A History |  The Great Courses

    The Catholic Church: A History

    • ORIGINAL (19 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor William R. Cook
    Overall
    (348)
    Performance
    (314)
    Story
    (315)

    How did the Catholic Church become one of the most influential institutions in the world-a force capable of moving armies, inspiring saints, and shaping the lives of a billion members? Explore these and other questions as you follow the development of this important institution in 36 informative, fascinating lectures. With Professor Cook by your side, you'll step into the world of the early church, witness the spread of Christendom, and learn about the origins of fundamental church institutions.

    P. Johnson says: "Thorough history presented in a compelling manner"
  • Machiavelli in Context |  The Great Courses

    Machiavelli in Context

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor William R. Cook
    Overall
    (147)
    Performance
    (131)
    Story
    (131)

    Mention the name Niccolò Machiavelli and you might unleash a powerful response-even among people who have never read a word of his writing. The word "Machiavellian" conjures up images of an indistinct figure quietly making his way through the darkest corridors of power; a cold-blooded political liar; or a coolly practical leader - amoral at best - willing to do whatever is necessary in a world governed not by ideas of right or wrong, but by solutions dictated by realpolitik.

    mc2 says: "Wow!! Machiavelli - Refreshing and Contrarian"
  • St. Augustine's Confessions |  The Great Courses

    St. Augustine's Confessions

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Ronald B. Herzman, Professor William R. Cook
    Overall
    (109)
    Performance
    (93)
    Story
    (92)

    How should parents raise children, and how should schools educate children? Why are we attracted to things that are forbidden? What is time? How can we understand God, or the nature of evil? What is true friendship? To answer these questions, Professors Cook and Herzman look to the Confessions of St. Augustine of Hippo.

    Timothy says: "An Excellent Overview!"
  • Francis of Assisi |  The Great Courses

    Francis of Assisi

    • ORIGINAL (6 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Ronald B. Herzman, Professor William R. Cook
    Overall
    (85)
    Performance
    (80)
    Story
    (78)

    These 12 lectures by Professors Cook and Herzman will give you a rounded, fully informed introduction to the luminous Francis of Assisi and will tell the intellectually and spiritually rewarding story of how his influence has glowed across the centuries.Just who was Assisi? Despite his continuing influence and the fairly ample writings about him that date from his own time, Francis remains somewhat elusive in history. Yet these lectures expertly unlock two sources that are the most revealing and plentiful-written narratives of Francis's life and the images created for Franciscan churches.

    Jonathan Homrighausen says: "Loved it"
  • Tocqueville and the American Experiment |  The Great Courses

    Tocqueville and the American Experiment

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor William R. Cook
    Overall
    (43)
    Performance
    (38)
    Story
    (39)

    Participate in a spirited exploration of Alexis de Tocqueville and his unique observations of this young nation that resulted in the two volumes of Democracy in America. How is it possible that perhaps the greatest book about U.S. democracy ever written was penned by a Frenchman visiting this country 175 years ago? Why is it still relevant in today's ever-changing political landscape?

    Lance says: "Great introduction to Tocqueville"
  • The Lives of Great Christians |  The Great Courses

    The Lives of Great Christians

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor William R. Cook
    Overall
    (56)
    Performance
    (52)
    Story
    (51)

    Meet some of Christianity's luminary figures-the followers of Jesus who have practiced and preached their beliefs for centuries. Whether well known or obscure or even nameless, their actions and achievements, their abilities and energies have changed the course of history and the nature of belief. These 24 inspirational lectures will inspire you by the many ways these figures found to live lives of faith.

    Pamela Rafdal says: "Cherish able information"
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