30 November 2011

Well [Spoken] Wednesdays: Dr Gamble edition

I took two classes with Dr. Gamble. The first was a one-credit seminar that assigned as much homework as a three-credit core class-- though I did learn to find sloppy citations and read five books about prostitutes in the Wild West.

In the second, I turned out to be the eldest student. This was amusing as I'm usually not the eldest anything (except child in my family) and I could pretend to be the experienced and authoritative sage simply by virtue of having a few semesters on everyone else. Even apart from that, it was Jolly Good Fun All Round, which happens when you're a senior with an unshakeable GPA and a good relationship with your professor and a brand new boyfriend waiting for you back home.

Ahem. The marginalia of Dr. Richard Gamble.


American Civil Religion

"I brought a few things for show and tell today."
"Now you can feel smug and superior, which is the purpose of higher education anyway."
"I crave a boring nation."
"We are like exhibits at the zoo-- don't tap on the glass."
"I'm not even sure what I think about this. I'm just going to mess with your minds."

"There's the sacred church doing its sacred thing."
"Now I've lost my piece of paper. That's what I get for arrogance."
"Doesn't that diagram explain everything you ever wanted to know?"

Western Heritage II 

“Hm...I’m just talking to myself. I’ll join you in a moment.”
"From this point on, we will be drowning in material."
“You can prove anything with history.”
“Hey, where are the decapitated people?”
“We will now impose our triangle on the world.”
"You have been sent to me as an affliction."
“I am the change I’ve been waiting for, come to think of it!”
"What if the explanations we use to justify this world's misery only make it more miserable?"
"I'm not quite sure that feathers are an aphrodisiac."
"You can''t protect your rights without the habits of a free people."
"Nobody was alive in medieval Europe."
"Would you like another mint julep here in antebellum America?"
"You can measure the wrong thing very precisely."
"As young idealists, we often fail to see how much of life is taken up by mundane things. The great challenge, then, is to live the mundane life well. To live it all well. To seek God's glory everywhere-- to be a vessel of His grace in all life's details, whether high or low."*

Student: "Don't shatter our illusions, Dr. Gamble!"
Dr. G: "You should be used to that by now."

*This was, incidentally, my collegiate finale: the last thing I wrote down in the last class of my last semester at Hillsdale.

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