May 02, 2001

Massad, Joseph
[CLME W3042] Palestinian and Israeli Politics and Societies

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

One of the best, most worthwhile courses I have ever taken. I came into this class knowing next to nothing about the situation in the Mid East, and now I feel like I have an intimate grasp of the history and origins of the conflict. Prof. Massad is a funny, engaging, and passionate lecturer and not afraid to criticize Israel rather vocally. As a result, expect many intense, but always polite, arguments between Massad and pro-Zionist students. From what I can tell though, he never lets his biases influence his grading, so you can expect fair treatment regardless of your political views. The one draw-back is the papers, which are basically a regurgitation of the readings and require no independent analysis or research. There was a lot of complaining about this though, so maybe he'll change it next year.

Workload:

There is A LOT of reading, but if you can keep up with it, it is generally interesting and helpful. Two 8 page papers.