Friday, May 2, 2008

The End of an Era

Professor Paul Miles' last HIS 380 lecture

"In the last century, we've developed doctrines, taken new approaches, fought wars, and negotiated foreign policy. I congratulate you for staying the course" - Professor Miles

Today marked Professor Miles' last HIS 380 lecture; he will continue to teach here, but his much-beloved "The US and World Affairs" is a fixture of the Princeton experience. Nearly everyone in the class takes it because someone else encouraged them to do so, and the last lecture today in McCosh 50 was filled to the brim with current students of the course as well as those who had taken it in previous years. Lecturing for 30 minutes, then raising his hands in Churchill-initiated peace signs, Miles left the room to a standing ovation that continued after his departure.

Miles is one of the professors who students will remember fondly years from now, his accent, Vietnam anecdotes, and wry sense of humor making him a symbol of what we will consider quintessentially Princeton at reunions in years to come. His class is one of the best in a department which I consider to be absolutely stellar (as a History major, I am a bit biased, but there are good reasons to support my decision). Post some of your favorite classes and professors! HIS 380 will return in the fall with another professor, so don't worry if you missed out this year - but do try to take a class with this vaunted professor of American foreign affairs.