The professor is in class to incite, cajole, inspire, and assign matters so that a young man or woman reads for the first time a book they may never have heard of. This is what he owes them. They want to know, moreover, not just what Plato had to say but what their teacher has to say. Yves Simon, in a famous passage, that I never fail to stress, tells us that there are three kinds of students: those only interested in grades, those who already know everything, and the eminently teachable, those who will allow him, in a short time in their youth, to take them through things which it took him into old age to figure out. The professor hopes that they all finally become “eminently teachable” and that he is worthy of teaching them.

From James Schall,”A Final Gladness,” The Last Lecture at Georgetown




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