Queen's University Belfast will in November open its doors to 30-40 wannabe Jedi knights with a one-day course entitled "Feel the Force: How to Train in the Jedi Way."
The blurb explains that the training on offer "teaches the real-life psychological techniques behind Jedi mind tricks*, and examines the wider issues behind the Star Wars universe, like balance, destiny, dualism, fatherhood and fascism". It adds: "This course is a must for all Star Wars enthusiasts, although light sabres are not provided!"
Course Jedi master Allen Baird said he "hoped his novel approach would attract younger people to open learning", according to the Telegraph. He explained: "It is not just about the Star Wars films. It is also about the sociological and political issues that are addressed in the films."
Baird dismissed claims the whole thing is just a publicity stunt, offering: "I suppose the parallel is with the Scout Movement's use of Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book. It doesn't mean that one has to believe that the stories are true, but they can be used as a teaching aid. I am trying to find a platform through popular culture to bring people back to learning."
"Feel the Force: How to Train in the Jedi Way" costs £23. Details are available at the uni's website. ®
* The only Jedi mind trick we're interested in is the one used by George Lucas to convince millions of fans that the second Star Wars trilogy was as good as the first three films when it was in fact a complete load of cobblers. It worked, though, as the box office and merchandising receipts prove.