June 21, 2010

Rajpurohit, Dalpat Silver_nugget
[MDES W1613] Intermediate Hindi II

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

I have taken Dalpatji's intermediate-level Hindi class for two semesters now, and I can honestly say that he is one of the best professors in the Middle East and Asian Languages and Cultures department, if not the best Hindi professor the department has got.

Dalpatji was always more than willing to help his students. He even initiates student meetings to discuss your progress in the class, and makes time to sit down with students and accomodates them in any way possible.

The course was very organized and structured - Mondays were devoted to reading comprehension (including ghazals, poetry, short stories, and excerpts from novels), Tuesdays were devoted to grammar (grounded mostly in Usha Jain's Advanced Hindi Grammar, but some topics were discussed because students expressed curiosity in them), Wednesdays were for presentations, film, and verbal practice, and Thursdays were for Urdu. The only downside to such a structured course was that it was difficult to find time to actually practice speaking in Hindi-Urdu. But if you enjoy the language enough, you'll find a way to practice outside of class.

Overall, I would definitely recommend taking this course, and I'd strongly encourage anyone to take Dalpatji's section. You can tell that he cares about the subject and his students, which is a rare combination at Columbia. Plus, he is hilarious and quite witty, so you'll always be entertained!


Very light and completely managable for a 5-point course.

One assignment Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday nights, along with a weekly journal. Occasional quizzes which are pretty easy.

A midterm that includes an oral/verbal exam, and a final exam. A short individual presentation (less than 5 minutes) at some point during the semester, and a final group presentation (around 10 minutes).