Friday, September 18, 2009


I have two very different professors this term.

My professor for Research Methods is a Ph.D. from Harvard full-time professor. She assigned all readings and papers the first day of class. It is a lot of work but there is almost no interaction with her. Boring class but at least I know what is expected and am able to get it done. It is a tremendous amount of reading. The professor seems a little bored.

My professor for Historiography is a Ph.D. from University of Chicago. He knows everything and reads everything. He is only a part-time teacher and does it because he loves it. (He says he has "anon-academic job to make money) He offers extremely detailed comments to everything I write. Like the Research Methods professor, he assigned all the readings and papers (also a tremendous amount) at the beginning of term, or so I thought. As students post papers the professor is reminded of things that are "very interesting" remind this professor of other books and he adds them to the reading list. For example, I wrote something about de Touqeville, Justice Joseph Story, Hegel, some 18th century German legal historians, James Otis, George Bancroft, and how the roots of German legal positivism and Prussian state-idolatry lead to WWI,WWII, Nazi-ism and Communism. The next thing I know, the professor gets all excited writes an essay in response, asks the whole class for comments, and assigns a new book for the entire class to read. Thankfully I don't have to buy it because it is in the Public Domain and available on line. Unfortunately, it is another book I have to read. And he does this once or twice a week. I love his enthusiasm and how he wants us all to be the world's best historians, but now we are up to 9 additional books fort his class.

This Historiography class is a semester's worth of work all by itself!!! I'll be glad wen this semester is over and I can start taking the Ancient and Classical courses.

No comments: