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.