“Ignorance, when it is voluntary, is criminal….We grow more happy as our minds take a wider range….Some showed that the end of their studies was to gain the dignity of instructing.”
I also share Jacques Barzun’s belief that my responsibility as teacher is to help my students become responsible for themselves:
“The present business of the undergraduate is to create a Self he can live with.”
— Begin Here: The Forgotten Conditions of Teaching and Learning
During my residence at the University of Pristina, February-June 2012, I will be teaching twentieth-century American literature and working with graduate students on their literary research.
I will also conduct my own research, which will have this purpose: To conduct surveys and interviews to determine how the literacy histories of students and professors in the Department of English at the University of Prishtina have influenced how students learn and how professors teach. These questions will focus on participants’ memories of learning to read and write Albanian, and on their memories of learning to read and write English. I will also inquire to what extent the conflict in Kosovo in the 1990s has influenced their sense of purpose as a university student or professor.
This blog is intended to share my reflections on what I observe and experience.