2018 Best Should Teach Lecture
and Awards Ceremony
Featuring Keynote Speaker:
Walter C. Klein Professor of Chinese History and Anthropology
Harvard College Professor
Also Invited Guest Speaker:
Associate Professor of Media Studies
Past Gold Award Winner
Full Bios Below
“Habits of the Mind: Global Approaches to Teaching and Learning”
There has been a growing concern in liberal arts education over the past two decades to develop a more robustly global emphasis for the curriculum. However, the results have been somewhat less successful than one might have hoped. In this talk, I will look at promising approaches that have been generated at both the college and K-12 levels to create a more cosmopolitan approach to education.
Michael Puett Full Biography
Michael Puett is the Walter C. Klein Professor of Chinese History and Anthropology at Harvard University. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. from the Department of Anthropology at the University of Chicago, and at Harvard he holds a joint appointment in the East Asian Languages and Civilizations and Anthropology departments. His scholarship focuses on the interrelations between religion, anthropology, history, and philosophy. In his research, Puett aims to bring the study of China into larger historical and comparative frameworks. He has published many articles on early Chinese history (c. 1200 B.C. - c. 755 A.D.), and on classical Chinese ritual, social, and political theory. Puett is the author of The Ambivalence of Creation: Debates Concerning Innovation and Artifice in Early China (Stanford, 2001) and To Become a God: Cosmology, Sacrifice, and Self-Divinization in Early China (Harvard, 2002), as well as the co-author, with Adam Seligman, Robert Weller, and Bennett Simon, of Ritual and its Consequences: An Essay on the Limits of Sincerity (Oxford, 2008). Puett has received multiple awards for his teaching and advising. In 2013 he was one of five faculty members named Harvard College Professors in recognition of his dedication to undergraduate education. Since 2012 his General Education course, “Classical Chinese Ethical and Political Theory,” has been the third most enrolled undergraduate course at Harvard. Prof. Puett’s experiences teaching this course became the basis for a book he co-authored with Christine Gross-Loh, entitled The Path: What Chinese Philosophers Can Teach Us About the Good Life (Simon & Schuster, 2016).
Invited Speaker: Polly McLean
"Dare to Teach: The Transformative Power of a Teacher"
The Arkansas Baptist College in Little Rock, the Langston High School in Hot Springs, the Lincoln High School in Kansas City, and the Stephen E. Douglas School in Chicago were the citadels of learning in segregated school systems. It is in these schools that Lucile Buchanan, one of the first Black women in Colorado to earn her teaching certificate in 1905 from the University of Northern Colorado and a BA degree in 1918 from the Department of Germanic Languages at the University of Colorado, spent 42 years teaching. These introductory remarks celebrate the best should teach initiative of teachers, who like Ms. Buchanan, transform lives.
Polly McLean Full Biography
Polly E. Bugros McLean is an associate professor of Media Studies and an affiliated faculty in the Department of Ethnic Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder. She received her masters from Columbia University and her PhD from the University of Texas, Austin. Her pedagogical and research interests include Intersectionality, issues of representation in popular culture, cultural and critical theory, racialized representations, African American women’s history, and globalization as it pertains to Southern Africa. She has been a visiting professor at the University of Zambia and Howard University, as well as a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Namibia. She is the recipient of numerous awards and honors including the 2007 Robert L. Stearns Award, the 2009 Edward R. Murrow Award for teaching excellence, and the 2014 Best Should Teach Gold Award. Her latest project explores the life of a great teacher: Remembering Lucile: A Virginia Family’s Rise from Slavery and a Legacy Forged a Mile High, 2018.