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Truth, Justice and Loving What You’re Learning


“I heartily accept the motto, ‘That government is best which governs least’; and I should like to see it acted up to more rapidly and systematically.”

With those words, the opening sentence of Thoreau’s essay, “Civil Disobedience,” Brian Gellman ’19 was transfixed. For him, it was the most influential reading in his jurisprudence, law and justice studies course. “I took that one reading and wove it through the rest of the class ­– everything we did,” says Gellman, an intended history major.

The course was Truth and Justice, the American Way, and Gellman spent an hour in his professor’s office late in the day talking about the Thoreau essay, later feeling slightly guilty that he’d probably ruined the professor’s dinner. The course was Gellman’s favorite so far outside his major. He suspects he’ll take more from the jurisprudence, law and justice studies course offerings. There’s a lot he’d like to learn, and the coursework makes sense for him.

“I feel like it will totally overlap with my history major,” he says.

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