C.A.L.L. paves way for pirate invasion at Central’s Superstition Mountain Campus

September 12, 2008

APACHE JUNCTION, Ariz. - From Blackbeard to Captain Jack Sparrow, pirates have walked the plank of American culture since before the nation was founded.

For five consecutive Tuesday mornings starting Sept. 23, swashbuckling instructor Karen Cook will recount the history and film legacy of the dastardly villains and heroes from the high seas.

Pirates, Buccaneers and Privateers: History and Film is a five-week course sponsored by the Central Arizona College’s Lifelong Learners (C.A.L.L.) program.

The class will meet 10 a.m.-noon from Sept. 23 through Oct. 21 in Room 441 of Central’s Superstition Mountain Campus in Apache Junction. The fee for the class is $20 for C.A.L.L. members and $30 for non-members.

A former curator of education for the Arizona Historical Society Museum, Cook will lecture on pirate history and lore while also showing a trio of pirate films followed by a light discussion.

The success of Johnny Depp’s Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy has triggered a younger generation’s interest in the old blackguards.

“It’s like magic,” Cook said of the pirates’ return to pop culture. “Every Halloween children dress up with eye patches and fake mustaches while donning plastic cutlasses – and the adults are right there with them. Our fascination with pirates is in our genes, I think, which is why I felt compelled to shed a little light on the subject.”

Pirates have a much longer history than running amok in early Colonial times.

“The myths go deep,” Cook explained. “We tend to associate pirates with a 100-year period in history known as the Golden Age of Piracy, but pirates have been in historical record since the 7th Century B.C. My class will include information about those folks as well as scallywags like Captain Kidd, Blackbeard, and the famous women pirates - Anne Bonny and Mary Read.”

Did pirates really make people walk the plank? The answers will be revealed in Cook’s class on Tuesday mornings.

Central Arizona Lifelong Learners (C.A.L.L.) is an enrichment program that provides a variety of informal, low-cost, high-quality classes, study groups and field trips for adult learners of any age. Classes are open to everyone.

To enroll or to receive more information about the C.A.L.L. program, please contact Vera Walters (480-677-7707 / vera.walters@centralaz.edu) or Joel Beck (480-677-7721 / joel.beck@centralaz.edu). The C.A.L.L. office may also be reached toll free by calling 800-237-9814 (x7721).

Visit the C.A.L.L. program on the web at www.centralaz.edu/call.

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