The Silent Seether

I had a Silent Seether in one of my classes last semester. That's my name for someone who hates your class--and probably you--and you don't know it until course evaluations.

This Seether gave the course below average marks in everything--including my command of spoken English. That's how I know they were really unhappy. I'm a native English speaker.

What bothers me--even scares me--about Seethers is you have idea they're there. For example, I know when a course has gone off the rails. I've been teaching 13 years. In that case, I expect lower evals. Or when I get into it with a student and she and I clash all semester despite my best efforts. Or a student is reprimanded for acting out. Or I won't accept their late work. Or they get a grade they don't think they deserve.

But the Silent Seether.

They smile. They laugh at everyone's jokes. They take notes. They turn in their work on time. They could be making an A or a B. And all along, inside their guts or hearts, hate is boiling.

There's nothing I can do about the Seether unless they let me know their pain. Then, perhaps, maybe, we can address it and reach an understanding. Until then, I'm sorry you hate me and the class, Silent Seether. And, please, be careful! I worry about your health.
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3 Response to The Silent Seether

September 26, 2010 at 1:51 AM

I'm not sure I'm a "silent seether", but unless I'm really peeved about something, I'll rarely make any comment about it. I just get on with it and will consider putting it on the evaluation at the end if I think it's necessary.

Anyway- they rated you low on your command of spoken english? Thats harsh- sorry you have to deal with passive aggressive people in your classes!

September 30, 2010 at 7:05 AM

ms. robin - while the silent seether may lurk, you must remember his arch-nemesis, the knowledge seeker, might be in his company. sure the knowledge seeker might not turn in papers on time, or fully grasp what is going on but the best part about the knowledge seeker is that he really does love the class.

as a former knowledge seeker i can tell you that your class my first semester is the reason i switched from an anthropology major to an English major. perhaps i should have told you this before, but your class was one of the most exciting and insightful courses i ever took.

i know i didn't participate very much in class, and i'm sure at some point i had a bad attitude, but i do want to thank you for being so awesome. screw the silent seether.

September 30, 2010 at 7:18 AM

OMG, Merdith you just made my day! Thanks so much. : )

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