Teaching as Social Performance – Greetings, Little Stars!


I believe I led some very exciting and genuinely instructive classes so far this week, and I have felt myself to be an excellent teacher. But, as our reading and discussion of Marcel Mauss indicated, no superb performance can occur outside a dynamic social milieu. There is no such thing as a perfectly isolated genius. Indeed, there is no such thing as a perfectly isolated mind. If I excelled as a teacher it is because my students excelled as students. This is one of the very few things that permits me to experience the daily stream of depressing facts as a whole larger and more compelling than the mere sum of its dreary or appalling parts. If you have had less than a satisfactory experience in class, you might want to ask yourself whether you, for all that may be officially matriculated, have not yet really joined the community. There’s still time for that. Look into your heart and give it a try!

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