Her classes are rigorous. Her final exams are legendary. Her passion for teaching is unquestionable. And, for Sarah Doenmez, her tenure at Dublin School has surpassed a quarter of a century. Embarking on her twenty-fifth year of teaching at Dublin School, Ms. Doenmez reflects on education, history, and all things Dublin. She is currently teaching a course on The Holocaust along with her duties as Academic Dean.
Why do you teach and what do you love about History?
I teach because I love to explore ideas and questions, and hear students' ideas developing. I love to see students get enchanted with History when many assume it will be boring, and get excited about issues in the world around us.
Students come to realize that all aspects of human experience have historical dimensions to them, and that we gain insight from literature, art, music, and science as well as the more usual historical sources.
What sparked your interest in History?
I began looking into history because I was so pained at the existence of things like the Shoah and nuclear weapons and needed to know how and maybe even why evil had prevailed. I have found in this search that so many fascinating questions are embedded in and enlightened by history. History is the best because it encompasses all other fields! Perhaps history can help us answer questions like, "How much do I matter in the world?" Both the best and worst aspects of our collective existence are the result of particular stories and developments. Nothing is inevitable about the way we currently live, or about how we will develop in the future.