A teachable moment?

Last semester I read “The Man Eaters of Kumaon” to one of my classes. In one story, it references a woman wearing a sari; my students had no idea what that was, I described what it looked like and received a bunch of blank stares… then I said, it’s like what Raj’s sister wears in “The Big Bang Theory” and suddenly everyone could visualize a sari.

Then there was that awkward moment when I realized that I’ve never seen Priya Koothrappali actually wear a sari, compounded with the weird taste in my mouth after just using a contemporary sitcom to explain a complex historical moment… it left me wondering: how in the heck did my accidentally inaccurate explanation suddenly enlighten my class??



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