Review Comment

[MDES W3923] Central Questions in Islamic Law

December 04, 2012

Hallaq, Wael Silver_nugget
[MDES W3923] Central Questions in Islamic Law

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

All these reviews forget to address the crucial fact that Hallaq is a brilliant man, who will deconstruct your entire vision of the world. He explains the shortcomings of the state and of Enlightenment concept, presenting students with a mindblowing alternate world view. This class is as much about Islamic Law as it is about the Western Orientalist system, and you will leave class blown away every week. Your perception of the world will change entirely.
He is also extremely available and kind to his students. And incredibly funny!

Workload:

Do the readings (around 100 pages a week, sometimes more or less) they're interesting, weekly response, end paper, easy end exam.

December 04, 2012

Hallaq, Wael Silver_nugget
[MDES W3923] Central Questions in Islamic Law

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

All these reviews forget to address the crucial fact that Hallaq is a brilliant man, who will deconstruct your entire vision of the world. He explains the shortcomings of the state and of Enlightenment concept, presenting students with a mindblowing alternate world view. This class is as much about Islamic Law as it is about the Western Orientalist system, and you will leave class blown away every week. Your perception of the world will change entirely.
He is also extremely available and kind to his students. And incredibly funny!

Workload:

Do the readings (around 100 pages a week, sometimes more or less) they're interesting, weekly response, end paper, easy end exam.

September 04, 2011

Hallaq, Wael Silver_nugget
[MDES W3923] Central Questions in Islamic Law

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

Before taking this class I was under the impression that it is super hard, but it was not. Prof. Hallaq is such a great Professor. So organized, knowledgeable, funny, and not intimidating. He was very friendly and ready to answer any questions. The class make-up was interesting. Not as many Muslims as an earlier review indicated, but there were definitely a lot of JTS kids. I precisely remember one kid who always asked questions very offensive to Muslim Americans in particular, but who gives a flying fig newton? Very great class. Grading of the final paper was very easy. I got an A and my friend got an A+-- we never read or did anything besides the presentation

Workload:

About a 100 pages of reading a week. Sometimes he randomly calls on people to summarize the reading. I was never called on Presentation, really easy particularly if you have some idea about your reading
Final paper easily graded, I wrote about something random. I don't think it even related to Shar'ia law for the most part. haha

January 06, 2011

Hallaq, Wael Silver_nugget
[MDES W3923] Central Questions in Islamic Law

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

Like the review below said, Hallaq is excellent. Very engaging, very funny. However, it did bother me somewhat that the class (Central Questions in Islamic Law) wasn't tightly structured, but of course, that's a matter of personal preference. He does have a very clear narrative for the class, which sometimes could become overwhelming. Nonetheless, he's a very cool guy, and obviously, super knowledgeable and passionate about the subject—and full of funny stories and tidbits of information. As for the class make-up, it was largely a good group; there were bearly any people who were terribly annoying.

Workload:

Very light

-Weekly readings (100+ pages a week) but you really don't have to do them
-A five minute presentation which literally takes 5 minutes to compose and then give as he stares out a window
-A 5,000 word paper that was pretty easily graded despite the threat that only 30% of the class would receive A's.

I'd recommend.

December 22, 2010

Hallaq, Wael Silver_nugget
[MDES W3923] Central Questions in Islamic Law

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

Prof Hallaq is great. Super smart, super engaging, he's a great professor and a funny guy.

Central Questions to Islamic Law is a good choice with not too much work. Weekly readings, one 5 min presentation on a reading and a big old research paper at the end. You can write about whatever you want which is nice. Though beware, he tends to call on people randomly to summarize readings...fear of his disapproval is enough encouragement for most to read, but many get away with not.

Class draws an interesting crowd. About half Muslims, a quarter JTS, and a smattering of other interested parties. He loves engaged students and gets off on class participation. No prior knowledge of the subject matter is necessary, despite what one might think. He does offer suggestions for background reading for the uptight.

Workload:

Weekly readings
1 five min presentation
25 page research paper at the end
no exams

Directory Data

Dept/Subj Directory Course Professor Year Semester Time Section
MELC / MDES MELC MDES W3923: Cntrl Questions in Islamic Law Wael Hallaq 2012 Fall T / 2:10- 4:00 PM 1
MELC / MDES MELC MDES W3923: Cntrl Questions in Islamic Law Wael Hallaq 2010 Fall T / 2:10- 4:00 PM 1