Is my curiosity able to express itself? Is it growing? In my opinion, one of the essential qualities that an authoritative, democratic teaching practice ought to reveal in its relationship with the freedom of students is a sense of its own self-confidence. It’s a self-confidence that expresses itself in a firmness of action or of decision in regard to its respect for the freedom and autonomy of students, its ability to discuss its own positions, and its openness to reviewing both itself and its previously held positions.
If the teacher is imbued with self-confident authority, there will be no need for a speech about it at every available instant. If there is self-confidence regarding its legitimacy, there will be no need to ask anyone: ‘Do you know to whom you are speaking?’ (pp. 85)