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Vision Quote of the Day

John Sexton

Education & Law

Now, I got a great deal of credit, within legal education, for creating a paradigm shift in the way law is taught in the United States by starting and pressing at NYU something called "the Global Law School Initiative" -- which really kind of broke the boundaries of American kind of ethnocentrism about law. And there were a lot of things we did to implement that. So here I am climbing the Pyramid of Teotihuacan -- terrified, because I have a fear of heights, but I'm going to do this for my daughter. She's scampering up. And I hear Charlie's voice coming back to me, from 1958 -- very distinct memory of him -- we had read the Book of the Dead, he had the Pyramid of Giza on the wall -- and he says, "Boys -- " -- because we were all working-class kids, "Boys, you will never see these pyramids, because you can't drive to them. But there are pyramids south of here that you haven't heard of because the British did not rob them for their museums." And I said -- it was Charlie that first introduced me to ethnocentrism. And he really created the Global Law School Initiative. It wasn't me. It was just growing out -- and he was the one that impelled me into teaching. And when I started with the girls -- I mean, I worked with those kids a hundred hours a week, because I'd put them in a car on Thursday and we would drive off to wherever it was -- the tournament was -- that week, and we wouldn't be back 'til Sunday. And even as a sophomore, or junior or senior, as I was doing college, I was with them from three o'clock 'til ten o'clock every night, and then off on Thursday and back on Sunday. And then off for these six weeks. It was the center of my life -- which, of course, led to a terrible college record.
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