Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Another Ally in Academia

My European Literature teacher created a sensation in the class today by coming out as a Republican. We were discussing John Milton's Paradise Lost and digressed onto the topic of rejection from college. That was when he seized the moment to criticize the mis-emphases of modern learning theory.

As far as I could tell, he seemed to have a major beef with self-esteem. He never stated that it's over-emphasized in public school, but all of his quotes point to it. "[This school] has the worst quirks. All you guys think 'MY LIFE IS OVER IF I DON'T GET INTO HARVARD.' You know what I think? I think society shelters the youth a little too much. I've taught at many different schools and I would have to say that students in this one handle rejection the worst. When I was in school we faced rejection all the time, so when I applied to Harvard and I didn't get in, it came as no shocker to me." The reaction of the class was rather hilarious. The students were pretty much stunned, especially this extremely liberal girl (I just found out she was in charge of the "Casulties in Iraq" map), who, while normally talkative, didn't speak for the rest of the class. When I commented, "welcome to the self-esteem generation," he responded with, "exactly."

This teacher already had conservative inclinations. Over the past 3 months, he's dropped a few subtle hints that he disagrees with the way kids are currently being taught. His teaching style is also rather rigorous and classical. By that I mean he opens up the class to a moderated symposium and teaches us in a very Socratic manner. Even when we say something that he agrees with, or if we say something that hits close to the target, he always plays devil's advocate until we hit the bullseye.

Later on during the Paradise Lost discussion, we were discussing the stance of Humanists vs. the stance of Catholics. I asked him about his stance on issues, and that was when he dropped the bombshell: "I'm not as conservative as I make myself out to be, but I'm a Republican." When I asked him if he was a RINO (a term most real Republicans should be familiar with) he responded with "definitely not." I wish I could have probed him a bit more, but by then, the class had ended. Still, it's nice to know that someone within the higher powers shares my views and would support me in a debate. Yet another Republican English teacher. Brilliant.


At 7:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

university of southern california


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