We ‘hear’ what we want to hear and all too often that is a preconceived notion.
I still remember my first real object-lesson in teaching. I had just started as a teaching assistant and they had me working in a class on early American History. The professor spent a good deal of time on the Puritan colonists that semester. By “spent a good deal of time on” I mean he railed on about this particular subject for hours while we slowly fell behind the syllabus, …which was fine with me actually, but quite a few students balked at this approach.
The professor did his best to debunk one common misconception about the Puritans; the notion that they came to America for religious liberty. In his view, it would have been more fair to describe the Puritans as coming to America because their efforts to oppress others had been thwarted in England and Holland. He could go on in great detail about various things they did which…
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