What of the generalist?

This was one of the last classes of the semester, and I gave my students a class-long revision exercise (to be performed individually and in groups), which they took to rather well.

While I was listening to the hum of their suggestions to one another – they appear to have learned something this semester, which is gratifying to me! – I jotted down a list in my notebook titled “Classes I Hope To Teach Some Day.”
– Postmodern fiction
– The essay
– Writing culture/arts criticism
– Film history/theory
– How to read a book
– How to watch a film
– From fiction to film (i.e., adaptation)
– World cinema
– Theology of aesthetics (or, alternately, theology of storytelling, or perhaps theology of the everyday – fashion, food, design)
– Basic web development and design

I can’t decide whether I need to specialize, because it’s academia, or generalize, because I am resolutely against the decline of the polymath. Also, I can’t decide if I’ve got ADD or am just voraciously, omnivorously interested in everything. Obviously, I’ve got problems.

One thought on “What of the generalist?

  1. It means you are a writer, and get to study anything that interests you, and still call it, “work.”

    Did you ever read How To Read Like a Professor? It would be a great addition to your “how to read a book” class!

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