The Public Interest

The future of teaching

William Arrowsmith

Winter 1967

During the Roman Saturnalia even slaves were permitted to speak freely, even about slavery. I am here in this American carnival city to speak, I suppose, for the classroom teacher, and I claim, o decani praesidesque, the ancient privilege of immunity for saying almost exactly what I think. I expect to be discounted as either innocent or impertinent, but that hardly matters. “So long as a man is trying to tell the truth,” wrote John Jay Chapman, “his remarks will contain a margin which others will regard as mystifying and irritating exaggeration. It is this very margin of controversy that does the work. No explosion follows a lie.”

Download a PDF of the full article.

Download

Sign-in to your National Affairs subscriber account.


Already a subscriber? Activate your account.


subscribe

Unlimited access to intelligent essays on the nation’s affairs.

SUBSCRIBE
Subscribe to National Affairs.