Connecticut College Magazine · Winter 2004


The Fight for Human Rights

The Tundra by Tank

Why I teach
Voices from the classroom

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David Canton

David Canton
David Canton

Jacob and Hilda Blaustein Assistant Professor
of History
Joined CC faculty: 2003

When I was younger, I wanted to be a medical doctor or a lawyer. Coming from a working class neighborhood in the Bronx, I wanted to give back to my community. But with teaching, I have a transformative impact on my students and myself. The goal of a teacher is to challenge your students’ assumptions — sometimes for the very first time in their lives.

I don’t want to make my students think like me, but I want to give them the skills and tools to understand other perspectives. If they are liberals, conservatives or radicals, my job is to demonstrate the historical origin and impact of each position on American society.

For me, teaching is autobiographical. It has changed my own way of looking at race, class and gender. Teaching has changed the way I look at the world.

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