Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

Marcus D. Allen

What I teach: “African American Politics,” “Black Political Thought,” “Congress and the Legislative Process,” “Contemporary Urban Politics,” “American Pluralism,” “Senior Seminar” and “Research Methods.”

What keeps me excited about teaching: With each semester, we [students and professors] are privileged to a world of new knowledge, whether that knowledge is exposure to new subject matter or a new interpretation of ideas previously examined.  I cherish the enlightenment we find in ourselves, as we embrace the process of discovery, and it is that engagement of discovery that firmly roots my excitement about teaching.

Why I chose Wheaton: The innovative curriculum and the respect for the use of nontraditional forms of pedagogy.

My research focus: African American/racial politics and Legislative politics.

The connected course I’m teaching now and what I hope students get from it: “Congress and the Legislative Process” and “Black Political Thought.” In Congress, I would like students to appreciate the complexity behind the rules of engagement in our democracy. In “Black Political Thought,” it is my hope that students appreciate the complex nature of African American’s struggle for universal freedom through the agency of political and social philosophy.

What I want every Wheaton student to learn: I would like for every Wheaton graduate to understand the capacity to be agents of change begins with engaging self-reflective thought about the world and creatively mapping a plan of action.

One of the best books I’ve read: The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi.