Readings in Urdu Literature I

Sep 2020

Aftab Ji has been one of my favorite professors! I have taken multiple classes that he has taught and he is equally amazing in all of them. I think what makes him such a great professor, aside from the fact that he is extremely knowledgeable about the material, is that he is also very obviously passionate about what he is teaching. His personality and excitement shows through in his work and makes the students equally excited about learning. By the end of the semester you learn about him as a person outside of class, not just as a teacher. I think language classes are very easy to mess up because grammar isn't always the most interesting thing to learn about, but Aftab Ji makes the daunting task of learning a language so much fun! The stories and poems he brings to class are always fascinating, and class is very rarely just a mundane discussion of grammar and spelling. Instead, we talk about philosophical ideas, spirituality, current events and so much more. He can recite complicated poetry with ease and always has the answer to students' on the tip of his tongue. He's also very caring about his students and always makes sure he is available to anyone who needs extra help. If you do badly in his class, there's no way it's because of his teaching.

Feb 2006

What a sweet lady! She's so passionate about poetry that its sort of embarrassing because I don't have that passion, especially as a South Asian. This class is for those who enjoy taking a relaxing class during their hectic coursework. Light reading although can take some time if you aren't familiar with the Urdu language, especially since some have tons of Persian in it. Good-hearted lady who really wants you to do well and enjoy Urdu. Plus she grades each student on an individual basis, i.e. not comparing him/her to the rest of the class.

Sep 2003

Prof. Pritchett is a sweet and helpful lady.She's also famous in southasian studies circles, but you wouldn't know it from her friendly, self-deprecating manner. If you have an elementary or an intermediate level grasp of Urdu, you'll enjoy and greatly benefit from the class. If you are directly from India or Pakistan, or your parents speak it at home and you are fluent, avoid this class. Her accent is sometimes a little too...errr...well, let's put it this way--if you were blindfolded and she spoke Urdu to you, you would know you were not in India or Pakistan. She is extremely knowledgeable on history and culture but lacks analytical depth needed to understand tough poetry and prose. I sense she is threatened somewhat by native speakers with a background in Urdu studies and very at ease with non-Southasian Indophiles, and can be cold to you if you are in the first group. I appreciate her enthusiasm and effort in Urdu Studies, but she should only be teaching at the undergraduate level. To give you an indication of what to expect: First class, expect maybe 15 peopleto show up. 5 or 6 will be fluent or near fluent speakers or grad students. Next class expect the 5 or 6 fluent speakers and any grad students with a southasian background not to show up...for the rest of the semester!