November 04, 2018

Kobrin, Rebecca
Jews and the City

A GREAT course. The structure of this course is designed around geography, with each week focused on Jewish life in a different city. I think the topic matter itself is somewhat niche, but if you're interested in the topic, this course lives up to its promise - the readings are interesting, and this is Rebecca Kobrin's area of knowledge, so getting to do these readings and have these conversations with her is a treasure.

Workload:

- weekly reading: there is a fairly significant amount. you certainly don't have to do it to succeed in the class, but as a small seminar, this class is much better if you at least do some of the reading or read summaries, etc.; I can't imagine I would have gotten much out of the class without doing the readings
- 3 papers - one reading response type paper about the readings for a class you will be responsible for facilitating, one material history essay on an item that has to do with your family's migration history, and a 15 page term research paper on a topic of your choice. graded VERY fairly

November 04, 2018

Kobrin, Rebecca
Jews and the City

A GREAT course. The structure of this course is designed around geography, with each week focused on Jewish life in a different city. I think the topic matter itself is somewhat niche, but if you're interested in the topic, this course lives up to its promise - the readings are interesting, and this is Rebecca Kobrin's area of knowledge, so getting to do these readings and have these conversations with her is a treasure.

Workload:

- weekly reading: there is a fairly significant amount. you certainly don't have to do it to succeed in the class, but as a small seminar, this class is much better if you at least do some of the reading or read summaries, etc.; I can't imagine I would have gotten much out of the class without doing the readings
- 3 papers - one reading response type paper about the readings for a class you will be responsible for facilitating, one material history essay on an item that has to do with your family's migration history, and a 15 page term research paper on a topic of your choice. graded VERY fairly

May 18, 2007

Kobrin, Rebecca
Jews and the City

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

This was one of the most genuinely rewarding classes I have had at Columbia, no doubt due to the professor. She was a bit hard to read, but was completely committed to the class and her students. On all our work, she gave us comprehensive comments. She brought a vast library of knowledge to the subject of Jewish history, which all the students benefited from, but always took time to explain more elementary concepts to the class when some students were not familiar with them. She did a good job of getting through the material, although her syllabus was occasionally a bit heavy on the reading. Classes that were rescheduled due to Jewish holidays she arranged to have in the evenings and ordered dinner for us. She also frequently brought home-made and store-bought cookies to class for us. I have seriously never seen a professor so committed to my appetite before. It was crazy, but it was really sweet too. I think sheÂ’s new to teaching at Columbia, but sheÂ’s worth taking a seminar with!

Workload:

Presentation of a topic one week, including posting 4-5 questions online and reviewing assigned texts in a short paper of about 1000 words, and a final essay (15-25 pages for undergrads, a bit longer for grads). Also, the weekly reading is about 200 pages and is neccessary for class participation.

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