Oh, America, are you really going to make me so happy?
This semester I taught a book of slave narratives - oral histories taken down in the 1930s from ex-slaves - alongside Toni Morrison's Beloved. Many students mentioned that they hadn't really considered what it meant to have an African-American presidential candidate, just from a socio-cultural-historical perspective. (Forgive them, they are 19 and rather sheltered.) While I don't think it changed anyone's vote (which was never my intention, anyway), I think it changed their understanding of the significance, and gave them a feeling of seeing history being made that they hadn't felt before. I find that pretty exciting in and of itself.