What does it mean to "expose" students to historical studies?
Updated: Sep 3, 2019
I am teaching a large lecture class (for the second time) this semester. This is supposed to be an "exposure" class for the history department. I thought really hard what it means to "expose" students to historical studies over the summer, and it reminded me of how I felt when I started doing history.
I am quite new to the discipline of history. I started my Ph.D. in political science and switched to history after two years, and that was my first post-high school education in history. I loved the sense of tangibly knowing something--what states did, how that turned out, how people lived, what they saw, and how they felt. But more exciting for me was the realization that a historical analysis can be a lot more provocative and creative than other disciplines, with the only rule being providing strong evidence and persuasion. I loved that rebelliousness.
I set the primary goal of this semester's teaching to make students get excited about history's creativity and rebelliousness. This is another semester of experiment.