Review Comment

[PHIL V3751] Social and Political Philosophy

January 06, 2013

Sidorsky, David
[PHIL V3751] Social and Political Philosophy

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

One weekend afternoon, Professor Sidorsky sits two feet away from me at Tom's counter. He has to know that I'm a student of his, right? No one else is at the counter. People say he's afflicted with terrible eyesight but I did raise my hand once or twice in class. Even if he doesn't remember anything else about me, I'm still wearing the same stupid jacket that I always wear in the third row.

He orders the exact same thing I'm eating.

What the hell is he getting at? Is he getting at something?

We sit together in silence. I keep glancing over, hoping to make eye contact. He smiles at the waiter but never looks in my direction.

Can I tap him on the shoulder? I'm afraid he'll break. Sidorsky takes 30 minutes to hobble across College Walk. They say he used to be a famously liberal scholar but I worry that he doesn't want to talk to a lowly non-philosophy undergrad on his time off. And don't old people want to wait before being spoken to? I don't know. I don't know. One time I told him that he was miscategorizing anarchism and he didn't end the conversation but didn't really respond to me either. I take out my cellphone and pretend to look busy. I don't want to go through that again. He wrote a funny comment on my midterm and called one response "interesting." It was my favorite course of the semester so far and it could only go down from there.

Workload:

There are six topics covered over the semester (authority, rights, equality, liberty, justice, democracy). All you have to do is purchase one $30 coursebook. The lectures and readings complement each other nicely. Sidorsky takes attendance, although no one knows if this means anything. Each class topic has 2-5 readings, none of which were book-length. Relatively easy...I kept up with the readings for the first half of the class and did all of the second semester readings during reading week (not recommended).

No other homework, only an in-class midterm and final. Even the philosophy majors were knocked on their asses by the tests. Half of the class didn't finish within time limits, and the questions are interesting but difficult to study for (asking for your opinion on a subject instead of a summary).

I got a B+ on both tests even though I have little prior knowledge of philosophy. Grades ranged from B- to A. Sidorsky isn't as harsh with grades as you'd think an older professor would be, and he bumped everyone up by a couple points as well.

September 04, 2012

Sidorsky, David
[PHIL V3751] Social and Political Philosophy

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

It wasn't until I began studying for the midterm exam that I realized how much I liked this class. That sounds like a really strange backwards compliment, but hear me out. Yes, Sidorsky is very old, yes, he can barely see, and yes he tends to move through the material rather slowly. As a result, some people gchat throughout class, some fall asleep, and some just don't bother showing up. But despite his slow pace, or perhaps because of it, Sidorsky presents concepts clearly and extremely organized. It's clear that he has been teaching this forever, and it pays off. Reviewing my notes, I realized how much I had learned, and I loved how organized and clear my notes were- a direct result of Sidorsky's lecturing style.

If you are interested in political philosophy, I would recommend this class to you. But if you prefer fast-paced, discussion-based classes, you probably won't love this prof.

Workload:

Sidorsky let the class choose between either a midterm/final or a paper. My class chose the tests.

April 09, 2008

Sidorsky, David
[PHIL V3751] Social and Political Philosophy

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

I loved this class, especially because I took it alongside CC. I would frequently use the information on the philosophers in this class that overlapped and sound extremely insightful in CC discussion. I did absolutely no work in the class. I just came to class, listened, and took notes. At the same time, the midterm and finals were absolutely beastly. I couldn't finish either one on time and I wrote more on them than I've ever written in my life. I also don't think it was an easy A at all. I really did buckle down to study for the tests, and I couldn't manage to get any higher than a B+. The thing is, I really don't think going over the readings would have helped at all.

Workload:

Not much reading and not necessary at all. Really long, arduous midterm and final. An ungraded paper. By no means an easy A.

January 11, 2004

Sidorsky, David
[PHIL V3751] Social and Political Philosophy

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

All the reviews you've heard about Sidorsky ring true. He is old, can't see worth a damn and tends to repeat himself to the point where you want to shoot yourself-- that is if you are even awake to hear what the lectures. With that said, it's probably a blessing he's so repetitive. Given that you attend class, you are to sure to retain some of the main points he expounds upon. He covers six concepts in total and said concepts will be ingrained in your head for good. An easy A if you have the willpower to attend most of the lectures (see, you don't even have to attend all). I do like him quite a bit as a professor. He knows his material and if you read his articles, you'll find that he's extremely intelligent and articulate. He also makes subtle jokes that are quite hilarious-- once again, you must be awake to hear and take note of said jokes.

Workload:

Midterm and Final. Listen to him and rewrite them on the exams. You'll do fine.

January 17, 2002

Sidorsky, David
[PHIL V3751] Social and Political Philosophy

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

Prof. Sidorsky did a fantastic job with this class. Despite the trend of many professors, Sidorsky didn't just reproduce the readings, with his lectures, he complemented the text with his own analysis and examples. Sidorsky is approachable, funny, and willing to answer questions. This has been my favorite class at Columbia and I'm a physics major.

Workload:

Weekly readings, midterm, final. Sidorsky is extremely reasonable with his grades. Attendance is recommended.

December 23, 2001

Sidorsky, David
[PHIL V3751] Social and Political Philosophy

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

I loved the class. I sat in on it just to check it out the first day and loved it. Sidorsky is a very sweet men, he is what I imagined college professors being.

Workload:

Not too much at all, very interesting reading that the prof goes over very well. He chews it up over and over again. He is supposed to be an easy grader, but this is his hardest class. I heard other classes are easier.

Directory Data

Dept/Subj Directory Course Professor Year Semester Time Section
PHIL / PHIL PHIL PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy David Sidorsky 2010 Spring MW / 1:25- 2:40 PM 1
PHIL / PHIL PHIL PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy David Sidorsky 2008 Fall TR / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1
PHIL / PHIL PHIL PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy David Sidorsky 2007 Spring TR / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1
PHIL / PHIL PHIL PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy Arthur Kuflik 2006 Spring MW / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1
PHIL / PHIL PHIL PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy David Sidorsky 2005 Spring TR / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1
PHIL / PHIL PHIL PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy Arthur Kuflik 2004 Spring MW / 4:10- 5:25 PM 1
PHIL / PHIL PHIL PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy David Sidorsky 2003 Spring MW / 2:40- 3:55 PM 2
PHIL / PHIL PHIL PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy David Sidorsky 2003 Fall TR / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1
PHLB / PHIL PHLB PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy Ken Shockley 2003 Spring TR / 1:10- 2:25 PM 1
PHIL / PHIL PHIL PHIL V3751: Social & Political Philosophy David Sidorsky 2001 Fall TR / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1